The solemn turn of four shovels of earth yesterday at the abandoned headquarters of the 10th Marine Regiment marked the beginning of a five-year effort to rebuild Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Marine Corps Air Stations New River and MCAS Cherry Point after the devastating effects of Hurricane Florence almost two and a half years.

Gen. Military and Veterans Affairs and George Rogers, Chief Executive Officer of RQ Construction, LLC, were attended by local and state government officials, as well as representatives from the military, civilians and contractors to commemorate the occasion.

Since the hurricane, the facilities have spent nearly $ 825 million of the $ 1.7 billion allocated to facility maintenance, restoration and modernization. Now they are expected to spend $ 1.15 billion on 31 military construction projects in the three facilities to replace 45 buildings damaged by Florence. The projects are grouped into seven separate packages, each averaging between $ 250 million and $ 300 million each. Five of these packages include projects at Camp Lejeune, the remaining two at MCAS New River and MCAS Cherry Point.

At breakfast before the groundbreaking ceremony, U.S. Navy Capt. Miguel Dieguez, Deputy Chief of Staff for Facilities and Environment, MCIEAST-MCB Camp Lejeune, which is in front of the bases. “For the next five years you will see construction work on an epic scale. It’s going to be a pretty exciting place. ”
More importantly, the improvements made to these buildings to withstand future weather events like Florence. “After the 2018 hurricane season, the Department of Defense learned many lessons,” said Dieguez. “We have changed our building standards to accommodate the more frequent extreme devastating weather events.”

Dieguez stated that strict building codes are enforced in accordance with a DoD-wide construction standard called the Unified Facilities Criteria.
“There will be more robust structural requirements,” he said. “You will see more metal roofs on buildings than ever before. Hangars no longer have vertical lifting doors. It has to be metal doors so that the multi-million dollar plane we put in will be there when the hurricane is over. ”

Dieguez said the funding will also provide the opportunity to make much-needed improvements to utility infrastructure, including hardening substations, burying power lines underground and installing remote monitoring systems at sewer lift stations.

When he turned to Alford, U.S. Navy Capt. Jim Brown, Commander of the Building Office in Florence, summed up the importance of his command’s role in restoring the base. “You are our customer and we are here to deliver combat strength. This installation is that platform. We have to bring it back to what it was, making it better and more deadly than before. We will try to do that. ”

Recording date: 04/23/2021
Release Date: 04/23/2021 12:29 PM
Story ID: 394595
Place: CAMP LEJEUNE, NC, USA
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