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Fort Lee prepares to host the Sustainment Center of Excellence.

Establishing the Sustainment Center of Excellence at Fort Lee, Virginia, will result in major changes to the look and feel of the installation. Once all base closure and realignment (BRAC) moves are complete, Fort Lee expects to nearly triple its daily population.

Increasing from an average daily population of 17,000 to more than 48,000 in less than 6 years requires major improvements, renovations, and revitalization projects. To succeed, these endeavors require communication and strong working relationships among the many different agencies, organizations, and tenant units residing on the installation. Success also depends on the solid community partnerships Fort Lee has with its neighboring communities.

"We have a lot of construction taking place, and we rely heavily on our community partners and the strong teamwork here at Fort Lee to make things happen," said Colonel Michael G. Morrow, Fort Lee Garrison Commander. "The economic impact after [BRAC] construction is complete will result in local economy growth of more than $1.7 billion by 2013. We have an amazing group of people that are forward thinking and have worked hard to address potential problems with solid solutions."

New and Renovated Facilities

Through its strong partnerships, Fort Lee has successfully bridged the gap in shortfalls, planned for future growth, and reduced strain on the installation. Plans for future growth include increasing childcare capacity by opening one new child development center and planning for the construction of two others. The installation is also planning a new 1,000-room temporary lodging facility that will be built by February 2012 to support the military and civilians students attending the Army Logistics University (ALU). ALU, which opened a 350,000-square-foot facility in July, will serve an average of 2,200 students per day. Part of the BRAC construction includes a new campus for the Ordnance School. The plan is to make the campus all-inclusive in order to provide the best service and support to the Soldiers attending the school. The campus will include softball fields, running tracks, a shoppette, a barber shop, and a troop medical and dental clinic. The dining facility on the Ordnance School campus will be the second largest in the Army, capable of feeding more than 1,500 Soldiers at every meal.

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Numerous other projects are currently under construction. These include a new shoppette and an expanded gas station that will double the number of gas pumps available, increase the number of car care bays, and have a Popeye's chicken restaurant. Fort Lee also has plans for additional expansion in 2013, including new swimming pools, two new gyms (one on the new Ordnance school campus and one on the ALU campus), two chapels, and a two-company fire station. Renovations of the two existing gyms and the Kenner Army Health Clinic are also planned.

Tenant Activities

In addition to the installation growth, two tenant organizations are also experiencing major growth and structural changes. The Defense Commissary Agency, which operates 255 commissary stores worldwide, is expanding its building to move more than 200 employees back onto the installation to comply with BRAC requirements.

The Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) is responsible for ensuring that Federal acquisition programs are executed on time, within cost, and according to performance requirements. DCMA currently has headquarters operations in California, Massachusetts, and Virginia. It will move most of its headquarters operations to Fort Lee and will occupy a building that formerly housed the Army Combined Arms Support Command, which moved to the new 218,579-square-foot Sustainment Center of Excellence headquarters earlier this year.

With support from the entire Team Lee family, Fort Lee is transforming into a state-of-the-art training facility and a home for Soldiers and their families that is second to none.

MATTHEW MONTGOMERY IS A PUBLIC AFFAIRS SPECIALIST FOR THE FORT LEE PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE, HE IS A GRADUATE OF THE MARINE CORPS COMBAT CORRESPONDENT COURSE.
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Author:Montgomery, Matthew
Publication:Army Sustainment
Geographic Code:1U5VA
Date:Nov 1, 2009
Words:644
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