One of Ponce’s most recognizable landmarks is Parque de Bombas, the city’s old firehouse building and now a firefighting museum. This brightly colored red and black candy striped building, located at the Plaza Las Delicias town square, directly behind the Ponce Cathedral, was Puerto Rico's first ever fire station.
The building was built in 1882, originally as the main exhibit pavilion dedicated to agricultural and industrial exhibits for the 1882 Exhibition Trade Fair. It was designed by a Spanish army officer, who also happened to be a professional architect. Made mostly out of wood, Parque de Bombas draws influence from Moorish and Gothic Victorian architecture, and consist of a large and open central space flanked by two lateral towers, two stories in height. The open space was used as garage facilities for the fire trucks, and the two towers as living quarters and exhibition areas. An elegant central two-sided stairway with elaborated cast iron railing leads to a mezzanine area used as administrative offices.
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