West Pierce Fire & Rescue — formerly known as the University Place Fire Department — is officially…More Pierce County Fire District 3. It operates out of a building to the east of Bridgeport Way West that opened in 2002. The University Place Police Department is also located in the Public Safety Building.
The fire department's history dates to the early 1940s, when a local family donated a tomato shed on Grandview Drive that became the department's first station. In 1941, it incorporated as a volunteer fire department, and was officially recognized as a county fire district three years later. In 1957, the department built a three-bay station on 40th Street West, which was remodeled twice and still serves as one of its two stations today.
As one of UP's founding institutions, the fire department is active in the community. It covers 8.5 square miles and more than 30,000 residents. In 2009, it responded to 3,555 calls, 73 percent of which were for emergency medical services.
In 2011, voters served by the neighboring Lakewood Fire District approved a merger of the two departments, and the two have been operating jointly ever since.