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Building to boost the 366th Fighter Wing capabilities

Master Sgt. Brian Richardson, 366th CES engineering superintendent, meets with construction workers at the Airman Center construction site, October 25, 2018, at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho. The 366th Fighter Wing was allowed approximately $56,000,000 to enhance building structures, mission readiness equipment and recreational areas for airmen around base.

Master Sgt. Brian Richardson, 366th CES engineering superintendent, meets with construction workers at the Airman Center construction site, October 25, 2018, at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho. The 366th Fighter Wing was allowed approximately $56,000,000 to enhance building structures, mission readiness equipment and recreational areas for airmen around base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Trevor Gordnier)

MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho -- Since the base was built in 1942, the Air Force has relied on infrastructure to facilitate key operations that make the Air Force’s mission possible.

In Mountain Home AFB history, the 366th Civil Engineer Squadron processes have stayed consistent while improvements and renovations keep base buildings and the flight line to code and boost the 366th Fighter Wing’s capabilities.

The largest project underway on base is at the flightline, Bravo Ramp, which was awarded for over $32 million.

Renovating Bravo Ramp will get rid of cracks from the previous ramp and greatly reducing the amount of foreign object debris and damage for years to come.

“The Infrastructure is aging,” said Robert Nelund, 366th Civil Engineer Squadron project manager. “Each piece of equipment or item has a limited lifespan and we prefer to replace them right before they are going to fail; because that’s going to have mission impact.”

Nelund described how aging facilities cannot keep up with innovative progress needed to enhance the mission, thus creating the need for updates in architecture.

“If you think of the facilities that were built in the 50’s, there wasn’t computers on every desk using electricity or making heat,” Nelund said.

Additional building upgrades include the Airmen Center currently being built at the Gunfighter Fitness Center. The Airmen Center is currently projected to be finished in December, featuring a theater room, music room, gaming room and a study area.

“The Airmen Center’s purpose is to enhance Comprehensive Airmen Fitness, which is very crucial,” said Senior Master Sgt. Andrew Toloza, 366th Force Support Squadron sustainment services flight superintendent. “Our mission is to provide over 500 dorm Airmen a recreation facility that meets their need and desire for community, while strengthening their mental, physical, social and spiritual health— all major pillars of CAF.”

The space the Airmen Center is currently inhabiting was not always vacant, it originally housed the Health and Wellness Center, which was recently relocated to the Medical Treatment Facility, showing just how quickly an area of a facility can be repurposed to fit the needs of the base and airmen.

“As the mission changed in Mountain Home, some of the buildings have been renovated toward the mission at that time,” said Master Sgt. Brian Richardson, 366th CES engineering flight superintendent. “Some buildings have already been through three different squadrons and renovated three times to meet those objectives; that’s why it’s very important to be constantly proactive when it comes to repairs on facilities.”

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