Construction is Booming at Fort Bragg

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More than $860 million in construction projects are underway on Fort Bragg, which has seen a tremendous amount of redevelopment in recent years, reports ENR Southeast.  At a luncheon in Haymount, Greg Bean, Fort Bragg’s director of public works, told the Regional Land Use Advisory Commission group that by next spring, nearly every building used by the 82nd Airborne Division will have been rebuilt, culminating a 20-year reconstruction plan that has cost almost $1 billion.

He said the overall building space on Fort Bragg has mushroomed since the last base realignment and closure round was approved in 2005, growing from roughly 30 million square feet to a projected 52.4 million square feet by next year.

All of that growth, Bean said, has led Fort Bragg to become the largest military installation in the United   States in terms of building space or population.  Put another way, he said, Fort Bragg now has more building space than at Fort Campbell, Ky., and Fort   Stewart, Ga., combined.  The Regonal Land Use Advisory Commisson recommends military-friendly policies and land uses to the local governments bordering Fort Bragg.

Bean said the Army in 2011 finished rebuilding the 82nd Airborne barracks for almost 8,000 soldiers. Gone are the open-bay sleeping quarters of the past, he said. “Every soldier has a private sleeping area, a shared bathroom and a shared kitchen, which is treating our soldiers like the great Americans that they are,” Bean said.  Here are some other construction areas he covered:

Special Operations

Bean said most of the construction projects underway across Fort Bragg are for special operations forces, which represents the growth in the military. Construction for special operations will total $133 million during this federal fiscal year ending in September; $97 million in fiscal 2015; and $121 million in fiscal 2016.

Fort  Bragg is redeveloping a 37-acre site, bounded by Gruber and Reilly roads, to become a training campus for the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School. Three buildings totaling $155 million in construction are planned for the campus by 2020.

New Schools

Fort Bragg’s schools built in the 1950s and 1960s have been or will be replaced within the next few years, he said. McNairMurrayElementary School will open next year, when construction will start on an elementary school in the Linden Oaks military community north of SpringLake.  An office building that will oversee all Department of Defense schools in North Carolina and South Carolina is being built on Fort Bragg, too.

Patriot Point

For the next decade, most of Fort Bragg’s growth will be on a 600-acre site between Chicken Road on post and Cliffdale Road off post. The area, called Patriot Point, is the former ammunition dump. Most of the growth at Patriot Point, he said, will be for special operations projects totaling $370 million through fiscal 2017.

Roads

The Army and the N.C. Department of Transportation are working to build what Bean described as the Murchison Road bypass through Fort Bragg. The section of Murchison Road from Fayetteville’s city limits to Honeycutt Road on post is complete, and the remaining section farther north is scheduled to open in 2017. Once built, Bragg   Boulevard on post will close to civilian traffic. The wider Murchison Road on post will be connected to Fayetteville’s Outer Loop, also known as Interstate 295, which is being built in stages.

According to Bean, the N.C. Department of Transportation is planning next summer to award an estimated $104.6 million contract to build a 5.8-mile segment of the Outer Loop between the All American Freeway and Cliffdale Road, at Fort Bragg’s Patriot Point.  Read More.