07/15/11 — SJAFB builds a new center

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SJAFB builds a new center

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on July 15, 2011 1:46 PM

A 43,000-square-foot facility poised to replace nine aging buildings on Seymour Johnson Air Force Base is still several months away from completion, but the most talked about component of the $10.6 million project has already found a home at the site.

A restored P-51 Mustang is currently suspended from the ceiling of the Consolidated Support Center foyer.

And base officials said the aircraft -- flown, at one time, by those who paved the way for current 4th Fighter Wing airmen -- will, like the building, be a symbol of pride for the nation's current fighting force.

MILCON project manager Bob Hankins said he is pleased with the progress of the construction effort that began in April 2010.

"The project has been going really, really well," he said. "It's about 75 percent complete."

And the finished product, he added, is expected to set a standard for future undertakings -- a new medical center and revamped base housing are currently in the works.

"It's going to be a premier showcase facility for Seymour Johnson, so we're excited about that," he said. "We're going to end up with a very, very nice facility."

Funding for the project came via Congressional insert and the contract was awarded to Duke Construction Co. LP, of Morrisville, in September 2009 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Savannah District.

Once the building is complete -- members of the 4th Fighter Wing's Mission Support Group, Legal Office, Contracting Squadron, Comptroller Squadron and Force Support Squadron are expected to move in by the end of October -- several decades-old buildings will be demolished.

But this particular effort, Hankins said, will be about far more than the creation of a "one-stop shop" for those currently stationed at the Goldsboro installation.

It will send a message that Seymour Johnson, at least in the foreseeable future, is here to stay.

"Seymour Johnson has been blessed with good projects," Hankins said. "They help to keep the base upgraded, but also make us more viable."