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Bethesda Fire Department Allegedly Using 'Scare Tactics' to Convert Fire Station into Housing

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There are plans for the Bethesda Fire Department's fire station to be converted into an eight-story apartment building, but many residents are speaking out, saying that it would be out of character for the nearby neighborhoods. Somerset Mayor Jeffrey Slavin described the fire department's board to The Washington Post, saying that they are not only "very adversarial," but also "tone deaf" to community concerns. While the fire department claims that they can't continue to provide their services without a modern station, Slavin believes that this is all "scare tactics." Meanwhile, the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rescue Squad (no relation to the Bethesda Fire Department) is also planning on rebuilding their station with a multi-story residential and commercial addition. The Washington Post reported that there is little public opposition to that project. The Bethesda Fire Department's project is expected to cost around $14 million at no cost to the fire department or taxpayers.

· Proposal to build apartments atop new fire station sparks debate in Bethesda [The Washington Post]