Four years after it was first proposed, construction has begun on East Aurora’s new Central Fire Station.

The 22,800-square-foot facility at 33 Center St. will replace a crumbling, 60-year-old firehouse at Oakwood Avenue and King Street that fire officials have deemed too small for modern firefighting equipment.

Picone Construction Corp., a Clarence-based company, this week began construction on the new $6.3 million fire station, which will include a single-story apparatus bay connected to a two-story administration building that will also include living quarters for firefighters. The fire station will be made of steel-framed construction with brick veneer, metal siding and include some masonry block construction.

The fire station is being constructed on the site of a former dental office that was demolished last September.

East Aurora village officials first proposed the construction of a new fire house in 2010. The fire department had pushed hard for demolishing the current firehouse – which was built in 1954 – and building a new one totaling about 30,000 square feet for $5.5 million, according to 2008 estimates. Another option that was explored was renovating the firehouse for about $2.8 million.

At the time, village officials were contemplating the construction of a new fire station, the fire chief noted that the floors of the existing firehouse were falling apart. Firefighters had long pointed out that the building no longer has the capacity to easily accommodate today’s firefighting equipment and larger trucks that carry more equipment than years ago.

In addition to borrowing, the Village Board created a $425,000 reserve fund for the new central fire station aimed at jump-starting the project. The money was transferred from the village’s undesignated fund balance.

The construction manager for the project is the LiRo Group, a Long Island-based engineering firm, and the architect is Bergmann Associates, located in downtown Buffalo.