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New CDF station to keep mountain charm

By GENEVIEVE

BOOKWALTER

After lots of letter writing and chats with state officials, Twain Harte is getting a new California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection station — and it's going to look a lot like the old one.

Instead of a modern metal model, the new Twain Harte station will stand on the Meadow Lane property and wear the same log-cabin siding as its predecessor.

"We all appreciate the esthetics of the Twain Harte station and how it fits into the community up there," said CDF Division Chief Andy McMurry.

"We made a push to make sure whatever replaced it wouldn't just be your standard-issue, gingerbread, cookie-cutter kind of thing."

Now more than 50 years old, the Twain Harte station is showing its age, McMurry said.

"It's kind of falling down. Equipment gets bigger and buildings don't, pipes rot — all that stuff," he said.

But thanks to letters from and discussions with the Twain Harte Design Review Committee, state officials agreed the town deserves a station that fits in with its Ponderosa pines.

"It was primarily a recommendation to the state, and they're going to do whatever they want, but they did agree to it as far as we know," said Michael McCaffrey, a member of the committee that wants to see a station with "mountain character."

McMurry said it will be a few years before builders break ground on the new station.

The state still needs to sell bonds to fund the project, and budget restrictions are holding up construction on other buildings — pushing the Twain Harte station toward the back of the line.

McMurry said he does not have an estimate on how much the building will cost.

But he said he was glad state officials kept the old style, and described the existing building as a jewel among CDF stations.

"I don't think I've run across anybody — whether I've been in San Diego or Humboldt County — who has been to the Twain Harte station who doesn't remember it," McMurry said.

Contact Genevieve Bookwalter at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


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