Fire Commissioner Announces Completion of $47 Million Project to Install Separate Women's Bathrooms/Lockers in Firehouses

December 12, 2016

Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro announced today the completion of an accelerated, three-year $47 million construction program to build separate bathrooms/locker rooms for women firefighters in all city firehouses. Since 2014, the FDNY has completed renovations in 47 firehouses and the Department now has bathroom/changing facilities for women in all of the city’s 214 active firehouses.

Commissioner Nigro’s announcement comes as the Department swears in of a new class of 330 Probationary Firefighters, including nine women - the second largest group of women to enter the training academy in FDNY history. The FDNY currently has 58 women firefighters and fire officers – not counting the nine who just entered Probationary Firefighter School.

“The city’s commitment to make sure that everyone is treated fairly and afforded the same opportunities has now achieved another milestone – the ability for all women firefighters to work in any firehouse throughout the city and have access to appropriate bathroom and changing facilities,” said Commissioner Nigro. “Our current women Firefighters – and the many more we are actively recruiting to join the Department – deserve this and it could not have been possible without the city’s commitment of capital funds three years ago to complete the most difficult construction projects to finish a job that began 14 years ago.”

The city began providing targeted funding to build and install separate bathroom and changing facilities for women in 2002. From 2002 to 2011, more than $30 million was provided to build/install facilities for those who identify as women in 54 firehouses – projects that were deemed the easiest and least expensive to complete. In the Fiscal Year 2014 budget, Mayor Bill de Blasio allocated $47 million in capital funds to complete work in the remaining 47 firehouses, all of which were more complicated construction projects requiring significant architectural design, structural work, and, in many cases - asbestos abatement. The majority of the 47 firehouses completed over the last three years were built between 1880 and 1937. In most cases, the firehouses remained open and in service during the work, which took approximately nine months, on average, for each project.   

There are 217 FDNY firehouses in New York City.  Currently, two of those firehouses are vacant and undergoing major gut rehabs which include building new facilities for women, and a third firehouse will undergo a full rehab and have new facilities installed this Spring.