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Des Moines International Airport

The 132d Fighter Wing is located at the Des Moines International Airport. The Des Moines International Airport is owned and operated by the City of Des Moines. Since the spring of 1995, passenger traffic at the Airport is up by 25 percent.

With the first transcontinental air mail flight scheduled for February, 1921, Des Moines needed an air field. Even though heavy snow forced that first plane to land in Iowa City rather than Des Moines, its impending arrival had stirred city leaders to appropriate a field at Southeast 30th Street and Vandalia Road, south east of the city. A sixteen acre tract near Altoona, northeast of Des Moines, was leased from farmer/owner James Hanna, and, in 1927, Charles Lindbergh flew into this new field to dedicate it. On November 17, 1931, the City Council bought the Jones farm -- acres located at Southwest 21st and Army Post Road -- and the Des Moines Airport began its steady growth. As the 1930's depression deepened, Iowans were jobless. But with the help of the Civil Works Administration, jobs were provided, funds were appropriated, and work at the airport continued.

As rumblings of war came closer each day and American involvement seemed a likely possibility, the State of Iowa allocated an Air Observation Unit of the Air National Guard. Their relationship to the city and the airport has been a long and important one.

By the late sixties, Des Moines had enlarged its airport to 1,075 acres; the deteriorating shelter house was removed (the last vestige of the old Aviation Park days) and construction had begun to remodel and expand the terminal.

The Runway 5/23 Extension Project extends Runway5/23 3,200 feet to the southwest. Cost for this phase of the project is $16 Million and will enhance runway capacity and improve overall noise exposure. The project was completed in December 2001. As part of this project, Runway 13R/31L will be permanently closed.

BRAC 2005

Secretary of Defense Recommendations: In its 2005 BRAC Recommendations, DoD recommended to realign Dane County Regional Air Guard Station/Truax Field, WI; Joe Foss Field Air Guard Station, SD; Des Moines Air Guard Station, IA; Fort Wayne Air Guard Station, IN; and Lackland Air Force Base, TX; by relocating baselevel F-110 intermediate maintenance to Capital, establishing a Centralized Intermediate Repair Facility (CIRF) at Capital for F110 engines.

In another recommendation, DoD recommended to realign Great Falls International Airport AGS, MT by distributing the 120th Fighter Wing's F-16s to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS (three aircraft) and to another installation.

Another recommendation called for Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport AGS, OH to be realigned. It would distribute the 178th Fighter Wing's F-16 aircraft to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS, IA (nine aircraft) and two of the F-16s from Richmond (49) would be distributed to Des Moines (137) to enable the capability to support the homeland defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission.

DoD also recommended to realign Richmond International Airport AGS, VA. It would Distribute the 192d Fighter Wing's F-16s to the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS, IA (six aircraft) and other installations. In the same recommendation, DoD would realign Des Moines IAP AGS, IA. The F-16 aircraft currently assigned to the 132d Fighter Wing at Des Moines would be redistributed to the 180th Fighter Wing, Toledo Express Airport AGS, OH (nine aircraft) and 138th Fighter Wing, Tulsa IAP AGS, OK (six aircraft). Des Moines' F-16s would be distributed to Toledo (123) and Tulsa (114) to support the Homeland Defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission and to consolidate the precision-guided weapon employment capability that exists in the Air National Guard. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 191 jobs (110 direct jobs and 81 indirect jobs) over the 2006-2011 period in the Des Moines, IA, Metropolitan Statistical economic area (less than 0.1 percent).

Secretary of Defense Justification: Establishing a CIRF at Capital would consolidate F110 engine intermediate maintenance for F-16 aircraft from five air reserve component units, and compliments other Air Force CIRF recommendations. The Capital CIRF would be centrally located in proximity to the serviced installations, and would utilize Capital's experienced people and existing facilities as part of an Air Force effort to standardize stateside and deployed intermediate-level maintenance concepts. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 6 jobs (4 direct jobs and 2 indirect jobs) over the 2006-2011 period in the Des Moines, IA, Metropolitan Statistical economic area (less than 0.1 percent).

Although Des Moines (137) was somewhat lower in military value ranking than Great Falls (117), the realignment to Des Moines would create a more effective unit of 18 aircraft.

While not currently tasked with a Homeland Defense role, Des Moines (137) was located within the specified response timing criteria of a Homeland Security site of interest. The 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines IAP AGS would assume a role in the air sovereignty mission.

Prior to BRAC 2005, the USAF announced a plan for the 192nd Fighter Wing (ANG) to associate at Langley Air Force Base. This announcement was made. To accommodate the association and the F-16 Force Structure Plan, the Air Force distributed the F-16s from Richmond to other F-16 bases using military value and judgment. The F-16s from Richmond (49) are distributed to Des Moines (137) and Homestead (31) to enable the capability to support the homeland defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission. Des Moines' F-16s are distributed to Toledo (123) and Tulsa (114) to support the homeland defense Air Sovereignty Alert mission and to consolidate the precision-guided weapon employment capability that exists in the Air National Guard.

Community Concerns: There were no formal expressions from the community.

Commission Findings: The Commission found that the Department of Defense recommendation to realign Richmond Air Guard Station should be supported. The Commission understands that the Air National Guard F-16 inventory must be reduced. The Commission further understands that prior to this BRAC round Richmond entered into an agreement to associate with the active-duty F-22 unit at Langley AFB, VA. The Commission did not support the realignment of the Air Guard Station Des Moines, Iowa. The Commission established F-16 wing at Des Moines, Iowa, Toledo, Ohio, and Tulsa, Oklahoma. This recommendation is consistent with the Commission's Air National Guard Laydown plan.

This recommendation directing aircraft movement and personnel actions in connection with Air National Guard installations and organizations is designed to support the Future Total Force. The Commission expects that the Air Force will find new missions where needed, provide retraining opportunities, and take appropriate measures to limit possible adverse personnel impact. The Commission's intent is that the Air Force will act to assign sufficient aircrew and maintenance personnel to units gaining aircraft in accordance with current, established procedures. However, the Commission expects that all decisions with regard to manpower authorizations will be made in consultation with the governor of the state in which the affected Air National Guard unit is located. Any manpower changes must be made under existing authorities, and must be made consistent with existing limitations. Some reclassification of existing positions may be necessary, but should not be executed until the Air Force and the state have determined the future mission of the unit to preclude unnecessary personnel turbulence.

Commission Recommendations: The Commission found that the Secretary of Defense deviated substantially from final selection criteria 1 and 2, as well as from the Force Structure Plan. Therefore, the Commission recommends the following:

Realign Des Moines International Airport Air Guard Station, IA. Distribute the 15 F-16 aircraft assigned to the 132d Fighter Wing (ANG) to meet the Primary Aircraft Authorizations (PAA) requirements established by the Base Closure and Realignment recommendations of the Secretary of Defense, as amended by the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission.

Establish 18 F-16 PAA at the 132d Fighter Wing, Des Moines International Airport Air Guard Station, Iowa.

The Commission found that this change and the recommendation as amended are consistent with the final selection criteria and the Force Structure Plan. The full text of this and all Commission recommendations can be found in Appendix Q.



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