Construction of a major new building at Robins Air Force Base is underway.
Officials held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday to mark the first phase of the Air Force Reserve Command complex, but earth-moving equipment had already broken ground.
The two-story building, located off Robins Parkway, will be 92,000 square feet and will cost $27.7 million. Completion is expected in 2019.
Two additional phases are also planned, which would consolidate the command’s nearly 1,000 employees into one building.
The move is also expected to help the base maintenance area as well. Currently the command resides in a building on prime real estate near the flight line, but the command does not have a need to be there. When the command moves, the base will be able to use the current building for offices that are directly involved with flight-line-related work.
Lt. Gen. Maryanne Miller, commander of Air Force Reserve Command, said the organization has been in its current building since 1953.
“The Air Force Reserve is expanding across the globe, and it’s important for us to all be together,” she said.
It could be a while before that happens. The first phase will hold 241 people, so the others will come later when the next two phases are done — and that could take years. The next two phases have not yet been funded.
The command has been working for more than a decade to get the new building.
Participating in the ceremony, along with Miller, were Houston County Commission Chairman Tommy Stalnaker, Warner Robins Mayor Randy Toms and 78th Air Base Wing commander Col. Jeff King.