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NASIC breaks ground for mission-extending construction project

U.S. Air Force Col. Maurizio Calabrese, National Air and Space Intelligence Center commander, speaks at the NASIC Intelligence Production Complex III groundbreaking ceremony Nov. 5 on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Calabrese’s organization is the service intelligence center for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Command. (U.S. Air Force photo by R.J. Oriez)

U.S. Air Force Col. Maurizio Calabrese, National Air and Space Intelligence Center commander, speaks at the NASIC Intelligence Production Complex III groundbreaking ceremony Nov. 5 on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Calabrese’s organization is the service intelligence center for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Command. (U.S. Air Force photo by R.J. Oriez)

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio — The safety and security of the nation’s air and space realms will be enhanced by a new addition to the National Air and Space Intelligence Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, where a groundbreaking ceremony was held Nov. 5.

The five-story Intelligence Production Complex III project, with an estimated price tag of $156 million, will add 255,000 square feet, divided into more than 980 workstations, mission-specific functions, meeting areas, 3D visualization capabilities, conference rooms and such amenities as mothers’ rooms, natural light and showers. Almost 700 new parking spaces will be included. The addition is scheduled for occupation in early 2025.

At the groundbreaking, Col. Maurizio Calabrese, NASIC commander, noted the center’s standing as the operational wing in the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance enterprise and the service intelligence center for the Air Force and U.S. Space Force.

“This event marks yet another milestone in the history of NASIC’s expansion from our humble beginnings at McCook Field in downtown Dayton in 1917 to various and numerous additions,” he said. “Our newest facility will continue to accelerate us into the future with added seat capacity, advanced laboratory capabilities and give us the ability to produce the nation’s finest foundational scientific and technical intelligence available for policymakers, our warfighters and our acquisition professionals.

“The investment made in this facility today will accelerate our ability to defend the generations of tomorrow in air, space and cyberspace – all right here from the great state of Ohio,” Calabrese said, adding his gratitude for the surrounding community’s support.

The NASIC commander read remarks from his leadership, Lt. Gen. Mary O’Brien, deputy chief of staff for ISR and Cyber Effects Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, directed to NASIC personnel.

“I want to be the first to congratulate you on this historic occasion. After years of hard work and dedication, this new facility is finally coming to fruition,” she wrote. “The facility is exactly what you deserve to continue to provide the decision-quality intelligence spanning the information warfare spectrum which is critical to the survivability of our forces at the tactical edge all the way up to the highest levels of government.”

Col. Eric Crispino, commander of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Louisville District, said, “We are proud to be part of these events and to help deliver for our partners here at Wright-Patterson. … We are excited to celebrate this milestone as we turn a new corner of the hard work of the construction phase.”

The project included rerouting the Prairies golf course and part of a road. Heavy equipment is expected to be on site by the end of November, he said.

Crispino thanked the high-performing project delivery team for its work and said Louisville District looks forward to working with the base’s 88th Civil Engineer Squadron and Air Force Engineer Center.

Kevin Cozart, senior vice president of Messer Construction Co., which has been involved in military construction projects at Wright-Patt for 80 years, said, “It is truly an honor to be entrusted to lead yet another project for our military and for the Dayton community.”

“This will be fantastic for this community but also great for our country because the work being done here is absolutely essential for the safety and security of every single one of us,” said U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, noting adversaries’ increasing threats from air and space.

He also pointed to Wright-Patt’s growing missions and number of personnel, which is projected to rise to 35,000 during the next few years.

U.S. Rep. Michael Turner said the excellent reputations of the men and women who work at NASIC are why the Department of Defense chose to invest in the building addition so personnel would have the latest and best equipment and facility.

“Their work assesses what our adversaries are doing, advises our men and women in uniform as they are on the battlefield and also looks to the future to tell us where we need to be, to try to make certain that we stay ahead always of our adversaries,” he said.

Mike King, regional representative for U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, said bipartisan support for Wright-Patterson Air Force Base resulted in the NASIC groundbreaking and noted Brown’s position as co-chair of the Senate’s Air Force caucus.

“We are certainly hoping we can make Space Command Center (headquarters for U.S. Space Command) be here at the birthplace of aviation,” he said.

In attendance at the groundbreaking, which was co-hosted by Calabrese and Col. Patrick Miller, 88th Air Base Wing and Wright-Patterson AFB installation commander, were Air Force and Army leadership and personnel; mayors from Beavercreek, Fairborn and Riverside; and representatives from the Dayton Development Commission and the NASIC Association.