Feb 27, 2013 8:00 PM by Matt Stafford

Construction jobs slowing down on Fort Carson

If you've been on Fort Carson recently or at least driven by, you probably feel like its always changing.

"That wasn't here before," says Hal Alguire, Director of Public Works for Fort Carson.

News 5 got to take an exclusive tour of the Mountain Post, as Alguire explains how all of these newly constructed pieces fit together, and he says a lot's changed since he got back in '02 as active duty from Korea.

"We've doubled in population and probably added several million square feet of new facilities," says Alguire.

It seems like something new is going up everywhere you turn.

"For several years we averaged over $500 million of construction on Fort Carson, each year," explains Alguire. That's a lot of projects and a lot of jobs -- important for civilians off-post.

With that large of a construction investment, it's allowed for a big down payment on conservation. Fort Carson has built 50 buildings with at least a silver rating from the U.S. Green Building Council. The headquarters for the 4th Brigade Combat Team is Fort Carson's first platinum rated facility; with a full network of tools designed to save energy and water.

"As we monitor the performance of the building, we can tell exactly where the energy requirements are," says Maj. Eli Adams with the Army Corps of Engineers.

"We'll continue to make improvements on Fort Carson, but the large construction that we've had over the past several years is not going to continue as we go forward," says Alguire.

So, the pace of construction may be slowing down, but that's with the exception of one very large project -- the new $700 million Combat Aviation Brigade.

The new CAB is expected to bring about 2,700 personnel, 4,000 family members, and more than 100 helicopters.

"We just recently got three UH-60 Black Hawks," says Sgt. Jonathan Thibault, who works with public affairs for the 4th CAB, 4th ID at Fort Carson. "Really excited about having those in," says Sgt. Thibault.

While the brigade is put in place we're also talking about 15 to 20 new buildings; hangars, barracks, re-doing the runway, a new control tower, a fire station.

"And we're also going to add a fitness center right across the street out here," says Alguire; all of the pieces the Army says are necessary for this brigade to become fully operational.

But from there, Alguire warns that the number of construction jobs on post could drop.

"This is the last major construction piece to the development of Fort Carson over the past several years," says Alguire. He says these projects are expected to take five or six years to finish.

Another big question is what affect could the sequester have if the federal government isn't able to form a deal, and a series of budget cuts and tax increases goes into action. We asked what affect that could have on these projects at Fort Carson. They say money for current construction and the design of next year's projects has already been authorized, but they can't say for sure when the future contracts will be approved.


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