By Rita Cook (original Focus Daily News article)
The Firehouse Gastro Park keeps the old building feel with a new crowd. Photos Courtesy of City of Grand Prairie
Grand Prairie Preserves History With A Destination Restaurant
GRAND PRAIRIE – The City of Grand Prairie recently partnered with a restauranteur to redevelop the city’s historic Fire Station #1 into a California-inspired eatery. Elements of the old fire station were preserved inside the building, including bay doors that can open and close. The restaurant, FireHouse Gastro Park, also features a coffee lounge, an outdoor seating area with games and an outdoor stage.
Historic Fire Station #1, located on Main Street, was the city’s first fire station. It was in operation from 1949 to 2014. In 2014, firefighters from Fire Station #1 were moved into a new fire station just down the street.
Amy Sprinkles, City of Grand Prairie Marketing, Communications and Libraries Director said, “Although it no longer housed firefighters, keeping it was important to the city’s history, ambiance of Main Street and potential unique use.”
City leaders envisioned a destination restaurant in the space, like what other cities have done with historic buildings. Sprinkles said the city did not want to lose control of the city’s historical asset.
“A partnership was the best solution,” she explained. “Carlee Ewers Smith [a Grand Prairie native] and Jason Alan Smith are the proprietors with whom the city partnered to realize this dream destination dining establishment.”