$32.6M fuel project gets green light at Selfridge ANGB

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Dan Heaton
  • 127th Wing
A new $32.6 million jet fuel storage and delivery system will be built at Selfridge Air National Guard Base. The construction contract, awarded to Garco Construction of Spokane, Wash., by the Defense Logistics Agency, is the largest single construction contract ever awarded at Selfridge.

The project will construct a hydrant fuel system to support rapid refueling of air refueling KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft and other aircraft assigned to, training at, or deploying from Selfridge.

"We are excited to see these kinds of improvements happening here at Selfridge," said Brig. Gen. John D. Slocum, commander, 127th Wing. "This new fuel storage and distribution system will help make your hometown Air Force safer and more efficient. It will also enable us to be better stewards of our environment""

Construction on the "fuel farm" project is expected to take about two years.

The new storage system and delivery system will replace an existing storage area at the base that was constructed in 1958. The new construction will feature three primary components:

. An above ground, 630,000 gallon storage complex.

. An eight-station hydrant refueling system that will allow even the largest Air Force aircraft to "pull up to the pump."

. A new, remote fuel truck unloading site that will further enhance safety and security on the installation.

"This kind of infrastructure investment is exactly what we need to posture Selfridge to be a cutting-edge military facility for continued aircraft operations in the future," Slocum said. "This project is a testament to the community and national support for Selfridge as a bedrock of enduring national defense and security for both our State and our Nation."

The new system will greatly facilitate fuel delivery to the 127th Air Refueling Group's fleet of KC-135s, which are primarily used for air-to-air refueling operations. Currently jet fuel is trucked from the base's fuel storage area to the KC-135. Once the new fuel hydrant system is operational, the KC-135s will be able to "pull up to the pump" to receive fuel.

"The hydrant system will reduce truck traffic volumes on the base, creating a safer and more efficient way to deliver fuel to our tanker aircraft," said Master Sgt. Eric Henderson, fuels superintendent for the 127th Logistics Readiness Squadron at the base.

Henderson said fuel trucks will continue to be used for smaller aircraft, such as fighters or helicopters, which take on significantly less fuel than the KC-135s at the base. In addition to Air Force operations at Selfridge, the Army, Coast Guard and Customs & Border Protection all have aircraft assigned to Selfridge.

Dan Frick, a mechanical engineer with the 127th Civil Engineer Squadron, said the project is the largest military construction contract, in dollar amount, ever awarded at Selfridge. It is certainly the largest to date in the 21st century, exceeding a $30 million operations and intelligence hub operated by U.S. Customs & Border Protection at the base, which opened in early 2011. The fuels project likely will feature the first new building of Selfridge's second century of operations; the base celebrates its centennial
on July 1, 2017.

Other recent major construction projects at Selfridge include:
* Renovation of existing taxiways and runways, $5.3 million, 2014
* Renovation and expansion of Joint Reserve Intelligence Center-Detroit, $6 million, 2013
* Reconstruction of the 127th Operations/107th Fighter Squadron building, $6.6 million, 2013
* Construction of a new aircraft munitions complex, $8.5 million, 2013
* A new digital airport surveillance radar and tower, $17 million, 2012
* Renovation of a Security Forces operations building, $4.2 million, 2011.

The project was designed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Omaha District. The Corps' Louisville District is providing the project management services.