New facilities at European installations support mission, improve quality of life

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By Jennifer Schneider, Air Force Civil Engineer Center Public Affairs / Published February 13, 2014

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO -- LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) --

The Air Force Civil Engineer Center's Europe division recently completed three large construction projects: a $15.4 million dormitory at Aviano Air Base, Italy, a $20.1 million fitness center at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, and an $11.2 million aerospace ground equipment maintenance complex at Ramstein Air Base, Germany.

All of the facilities are constructed to meet both Air Force and host nation construction design requirements, including a European directive for new buildings to achieve a "net zero" status by 2020 - producing as much energy as they consume, said Jason Burnside, AFCEC construction manager for the dormitory.

Aviano's new three-story dorm houses 144 Airmen and features a quad room layout, providing every four Airmen with private bedrooms and bathrooms and a shared living, dining and kitchen area. The dormitory's energy-saving features include a solar hot water system, projected to save $4,000 annually.

Spangdahlem's new fitness center boasts a gymnasium, indoor running track, cardio and weight rooms, racquetball courts, a climbing wall and a health and wellness center. The facility will eventually include an outdoor running track and sports field, which are currently under design.

"The project is part of an initiative to develop an area of land recently acquired by the Air Force, and will eventually allow for closure of (nearby) Bitburg Annex," said Elizabeth Tevault, the AFCEC design and construction manager for the project.

The fitness center will ultimately be surrounded by a new commissary, with construction starting this month, an Army and Air Force Exchange Service facility, which was completed in Nov. 2012, and a combined middle and high school, which is under design, Tevault said.

Another project in Germany, Ramstein's AGE maintenance complex, totals over 40,000 square feet and provides a maintenance facility, covered storage, an open-storage jet fueling station with a storage tank and a wash rack.

The AGE complex consolidates five existing facilities currently spread across the base.

"Once construction of the AGE complex is complete, the old facilities will be demolished," Tevault said. "The project will result in a more efficient operation for the AGE maintenance personnel and provide a reduction in the Air Force facility footprint."

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