News: Quality of life improves in Spartan Brigade
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Jason Epperson
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska - Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson’s newest barracks is ready to improve the quality of life for troops living on the installation following a ribbon-cutting ceremony Nov. 1, 2013.
Paul Degner, project manager for the 673rd Civil Engineer Squadron, said the project started in 2008, representing thousands of hours of planning, design and construction.
Degner said the new facility includes nearly 75,000 square feet of floor space and can house up to 192 soldiers. It features anti-terrorism force protection measures incorporated in the design to include the windows, bollards, gates and landscape features.
The building is LEED Silver certified, meeting the US Green Building Council Silver standards, meaning it will be very energy efficient, said Degner. The building materials are environmentally friendly. The sloping metal roof is designed to shed snow efficiently along with canopies at each entrance to prevent ice hazards at entrances, and a low-maintenance landscape. The facility is equipped with high efficiency condensing boilers, extra insulation, LED efficient lighting and an energy management control system. It houses a centrally located mail center and recycling room.
The $24.5-million world-class facility barracks is the new home to paratroopers assigned to the 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 377th Parachute Field Artillery Regiment.
Army Lt. Col Christopher J. Ward, 2-377 PFAR’s commander, was at the event to celebrate the event.
“This will be the barracks my soldiers will be moving in over the next few weeks,” Ward said. “We’re here to celebrate the opening of the building and to showcase where the Army has gone as far as the care for soldiers and ensuring soldiers have a good place to call a home away from home.“
Ward said the “dormitory“ style barracks have many new improvements.
“There’s still two to a room, but they have their own sleeping quarters and can be closed off for some privacy and they have common areas where they have a kitchenette, washer and dryer, storage space and a shared bathroom as well,” Ward said.
From a paratrooper’s standpoint, there is an eagerness to move in.
Pfc. Taylor Ford, (ribbon cutter) a Field Artillery Automated Tactical Data Systems Specialist assigned to B Battery, 2-377 PFAR said he won’t miss the old barracks.
“The barracks now are only a few shower stalls to an entire hallway and that can get kind of crowded, especially after activities,” Ford, a native of Fayetteville, N.C., said. “I’m pretty excited and glad that they are taking care of their junior enlisted, single enlisted single soldiers and I really appreciate that.”
Following the ceremony, attendees were given tours to see the inside of the facility.
Date Posted:11.05.2013 20:19
Location:JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, AK, US
Hometown:AIEA, HI, US
Hometown:CHUGIAK, AK, US
Hometown:FAYETTEVILLE, NC, US
Hometown:LEWISTON, ME, US