Before: The DungeonWhen the holiday season arrives, many of the special men and women of Atlanta’s Fire Station 16 spend the holidays on duty. Not only do these individuals risk their lives everyday, they also provide a lot of services to the community. Each December, they go above the call of duty by putting on a Christmas feast for the entire community. Because these firefighters work so hard and are so dedicated, designer Vern Yip is going to give back to them by making over Fire Station 16’s lounge and bunk room.
Around the firehouse this room is referred to as the dungeon. It is dark, dreary and the furniture is worn and weary. This is where the firefighters come to unwind and watch TV while on duty. So, this space needs to be comfortable and feel like a home away from home.
After: Leather LoungeTwo new leather sofas give them a comfy place to plop down and watch their new television. The white leather brightens up the space and is practical because it can be easily wiped down and cleaned. The stainless-steel coffee table is also very sensible and sturdy. Suspended globe lights and a table lamp provide softer light than the harsh overhead florescent fixtures. The firefighters have a new set of table and chairs for eating or playing cards. The built-in lockers are cleaned up and new lockers are added for extra storage. For a little more personality, black-and-white portraits of all 27 active members of the firehouse line the lounge walls. A red, white and silver Christmas tree makes the place merry and bright.
Before: Uncomfortable Bunk RoomThe firefighters work in 24-hour shifts, so they need a place to nap and to store some personal items. The only storage the firefighters have is the lockers next to the lounge. Also, with the high-traffic flow, the overhead florescent lighting isn’t practical. When turned on, it is too bright for sleeping, when turned off, it is impossible to see anything.
After: Privacy, Function and ComfortTen, new metal canopy beds provide the firefighters a room within a room. They can close the curtains for privacy and to block out light. Instead of glaring, overhead florescent lights, the new globe lights just illuminate a path down the center of the room. This is less disturbing to anyone sleeping, but still allows enough light for someone to pass through the room without walking into furniture.
Firefighters have to take regular qualifying exams. The bi-level desks in between the beds give them a place to study or they can use the desks as nightstands. The firefighters can stash their personal stuff in the leather storage ottomans that sit at the foot of each bed. To give the room a festive tone, handmade snowflake art is hung above each headboard.