Construction of the new basic military training facilities at Lackland AFB, Tex., is set to commence next May under an ambitious $900 million project to replace the base’s current dormitories and dining facilities, some of which date back to the late 1960s and are approaching the end of their useful life due to constant heavy use. The San Antonio Express News reported yesterday that, between 2009 and 2014, the service intends to erect 20 new structures at Lackland, including eight 1,200-person Airmen Training Complexes and four dining halls. They will be divided into two campuses that include running tracks, drill pads, and war skills areas, Lackland officials said in a release earlier this year. Airmen are expected to move into the first new dorm and start training in new facilities as early as 2011, the Air Force has said. Starting in Fiscal 2009, the Air Force is expanding BMT from 6.5 weeks to 8.5 weeks.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.