$8 million MXS facility consolidates operations
KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- A ribbon-cutting ceremony held at Kunsan Dec. 18 signified the completion of a new maintenance complex which consolidates 18 interrelated shops.
The new accessories shop cost $8 million and was completely funded by the Republic of Korea. It will be home to four functional areas within the 8th Maintenance Squadron: wheel and tire, hydraulics and electrical, external tank and the commander support staff.
"Before the new facility was completed, maintenance operations were performed out of several buildings scattered across three square miles," said Andrew Rajala, the resident engineer at Kunsan's U.S. Army Corps of Engineers office. "Now, all these sections are in a single area and there are fewer inefficiencies of transporting parts among the shops."
The two other phases of the project, the fabrication and armament shops, were completed in September 2011 for a combined $12.8 million.
Throughout the project, quality assurance (QA) and contract management was completed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The 8th Civil Engineer Squadron acted as a liaison between them and the customer.
One of the new building's occupants, Staff Sgt. Brice Gaston, is excited about how the facility will benefit the mission.
"This project is great and it's an absolutely beautiful building," said the 8th MXS alternate facility manager and vehicle control officer. "Having everyone right here instead of having to walk across base is really convenient. It also helps our squadron decrease our footprint on the base."
This equates to saved money and manpower, a part Rajala is glad he had in the project.
"My role was to oversee our staff of project engineers and QA representatives," he said. "We take great pride in knowing we were involved in a project that allows Kunsan to maintain the U.S. Forces Korea mission."