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Engine 38


Located in the Tacony neighborhood of Northeast Philadelphia, the new Engine 38 firehouse was built with the community in mind. The firehouse brings together in contemporary construction the notions of significant civic presence, Victorian scale, and Tacony’s rich early industrial history. Careful siting delicately integrates the building into the terrain – and activity – of surrounding Disston Park. A gabled roof, front porch, and use of vernacular brick further connect the building to its community.

CBP Architects designed the two-story, three-bay fire station to take maximum advantage of its sloped site. Primary fire department functions and apparatus bays are located on the partially below-grade first floor, at the same level as the major roadway, to minimize truck noise pollution. Support spaces and a community room are located on the second floor, level with the park grounds. An operable partition within the community room enables it to be divided; the rear half doubles as a fire department training room and includes separate storage and a stair connection to the first floor. An inviting front porch marries the community room to the park, expanding building activities outdoors. Vegetable gardens maintained by the firefighters provide a buffer between their daytime living space and firehouse parking. Designed to LEED Silver Certification standards, the project adhered to energy, material, and water conservation practices.

  • Project Category

    Institutional, Civic & Commercial

  • Client

    City of Philadelphia Department of Public Property

  • Location

    Philadelphia, PA

  • Number of Stories


  • Gross Floor Area

    12,000 sf

  • Program

    New Fire Station & Community Room