Downtown St. Petersburg Historical Building

Jun 2, 2020

A historical building that is a historic cornerstone of St. Petersburg’s vibrant local culture had a failing fire alarm that, after many years in use, ran the risk of becoming unreliable. The fire alarm panel was obsolete and replacement parts were no longer available, so the building needed an entirely new system that protected its retail and office spaces as well as the attached condominiums.

The project presented a unique combination of complex, contradictory factors. The new system must accommodate both residential and commercial use, and the upgraded fire alarm system had to be designed and implemented without interrupting the condo owners or retail businesses. Additionally, the historic building was constructed in 1926 and has had a place on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places since 1982. We had to preserve its architecture and history without compromising on the quality or strength of its new safety system. The replacement fire alarm had to be comprehensive while still suitable for multiple kinds of occupancy, as well as high-tech and code-compliant without jeopardizing the historic nature of the property.

CFC tailored its meticulous fire alarm replacement and installation process to the building and its multiplicity of uses. Our team spent many days walking the site, taking measurements, drawing the layouts of the living spaces, generating current blueprints with the information provided by the owner, and getting to know the space.

Our specialized design and engineering team went to work once we had a set of blueprints that mapped out the current layout of rooms and fire alarm devices. Our fire alarm systems include the latest technologies and integrations on the market, including control panels, pull stations, horn strobes, speakers, smoke and heat detectors, central station monitoring and automatic speakers. We developed a code-compliant system that was promptly submitted to the Authority Having Jurisdiction for permit review. The CFC team is well-versed in navigating the permitting process to make fire alarm upgrades and replacements hassle-free for our clients. Once a permit was issued, the real work began.

CFC Systems understands that while fire safety equipment is crucial to continued public safety, the installation of fire alarm systems can be inconvenient and detrimental for business owners and residents alike. As with all of our projects, we prioritized our clients’ needs and schedules when planning our installation. Our CFC technicians worked closely with the Home Owner’s Association to schedule access to the living units within residents’ preferred time frames. We then worked very early in the morning while installing the fire alarm components in the retail spaces so as not to impede on their regular hours of operation and detract from their potential earnings.

After the new system was installed, we scheduled testing with building management to ensure that connections to the elevator, fire pump, dampers, and generator worked properly. Seamless integration with pre-existing building systems is a key facet of both our design and installation process. All tests were successful, and our project’s result was a stress-free fire alarm upgrade.


CFC has become a staple in the Central and Southwest Florida communities throughout our 40 years of operation. We are invested in helping our local businesses thrive with the utmost security and peace-of-mind.