Naval Support Activity New Orleans
Ready Reserve Force, or RRF, ships help to offset the shortage of militarily useful US -flagged ships. RRF ships are maintained in four-, five-, 10- or 20-day readiness status by the US Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration. When activated, these ships are under the operational control of Military Sealift Command. Ships with four- or five-day readiness status are berthed at ports throughout the United States allowing them to remain close to potential military load-out sites.
Naval Support Activity is located in New Orleans on the Westbank of the Mississippi River. Take I-10 to US-90 Business West and cross the Crescent City Connection Bridge to the WESTBANK. Exit at Gen. de Gaulle South. At the traffic signal turn left onto Shirley Drive, continue straight ahead to the main gate.
For more than 125 years the Navy has called the west bank of the Mississippi River in New Orleans home. In February 1849 a cerb on which the Naval Support Activity now stands was purchased for an intended Navy yard. The Navy yard was not built, however, and the land was leased for farming. In May of that year additional ground was purchased by the Navy to enlarge the original site.
In November 1901 the Naval Dry Dock (YFD#2) arrived and the U.S. Navy Station was formally established. In 1902 the Commandant, Eighth Naval District received almost $4 million for new buildings and improvements to the station. Additional property was obtained giving the Navy almost three fourth of a mile of valuable river frontage.
The original buildings, some of which still stand, were completed on the site in 1903. Also located on the grounds is a plantation home, built in 1840. Today that home is known simply as Quarters "A" and is occupied by the area's senior Naval flag officer. Quarters "A", an Antebellum Creole style country home, was placed on the National Register in 1993. Quarters "A" sits on what was once Bienville's personal concession.
The Naval Station remained open until September 1911. Following four years of inactivity, it was reopened in 1915 as an industrial Navy yard for repair of vessels. The station continued in full operation until June 1939 when it was placed in a maintenance status. In December 1939 the station was reactivated and eventually became a base to handle transient naval personnel.
In September 1944 the station was designated the U.S. Naval Repair Base. However, just three years later it was redesignated as the U.S. Naval Station, a name it held until January 1962 when it became the Headquarters, Support Activity, New Orleans. This latter name came about to reflect the fact that the Headquarters, Eighth Naval District was aboard the station as a regular tenant.
Located on the east bank of the Mississippi River are the three largest buildings of the Naval Support Activity. The three giant buildings that tower six floors above the river each contain over one-half million square feet of floor space and house a major part of NAVSUPPACT tenants.
The 30 acres of land and the three buildings have a history that began in June of 1919 when the buildings were constructed for the U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps for use as a general depot during World War I.
These buildings were partially used by the QM Corps after completion until February 1931 when Buildings 601 and 602 were leased to the Board of Commissioners, Port of New Orleans.
With the advent of World War II the lease was canceled and the installation reverted to complete use by the military. After the QM Corps gave up the buildings the official title became the New Orleans Port of Embarkation. In 1955 the tract of land was known as the New Orleans Army Terminal. In 1965 the name was changed to the New Orleans Army Base.
There was an expanding naval presence in the lower Mississippi Delta in the middle 60's. In June 1966 the New Orleans Army Base was transferred to the Navy. July 1966 saw the disestablishment of the Headquarters, Support Activity and the establishment of the Naval Support Activity to reflect the changing mission of the station. With this change in mission and designation both sides of the river began serving as the Naval Support Activity for the first time.
Facilities at Naval Support Activity, New Orleans are located near mile 92.8 on the river where the Navy maintains a 374-ft pier on the west bank. With a deck height of 20 ft and an alongside depth of 35 ft, the pier is normally occupied by the USS William C. Lawe (DD-763). Several US Navy small craft utilize facilities located on the shore (south) side of the east end of the main pier structure. The US Government also owns and operates the Poland Street Wharf on the east bank of the river opposite the Naval Support Activity pier just described. The Poland Street Wharf has a 2,193-ft face with alongside depths of 32 to 75 ft, and a deck height of 25.5 ft. It is used primarily by the Military Sealift Command, but a section of the pier is leased to a private steamship corporation.
In its 2005 BRAC Recommendations, DoD recommended to close Naval Support Activity New Orleans, LA. As a result, it recommended to relocate and consolidate its units as follows: relocate the Navy Reserve Personnel Command and the Enlisted Placement and Management Center to Naval Support Activity Mid-South, Millington, TN and consolidate with the Navy Personnel Command at Naval Support Activity Mid-South; relocate the Naval Reserve Recruiting Command to Naval Support Activity Mid-South and consolidate with the Navy Recruiting Command at Naval Support Activity Mid-South; relocate the Navy Reserve Command to Naval Support Activity Norfolk, VA, except for the installation management function, which would consolidate with Navy Region Southwest at Naval Station San Diego, CA, Navy Region Northwest at Submarine Base Bangor, WA, and Navy Region Midwest at Naval Station Great Lakes, IL; relocate the Headquarters of Marine Forces Reserve to Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans, LA, and consolidate it with the Marine Corps Reserve Support Command element of Mobilization Command, which would relocate to NAS JRB New Orleans from Marine Corps Support Activity, Kansas City, MO; relocate Naval Air Systems Command Support Equipment Facility New Orleans, LA, Navy Recruiting District New Orleans, LA, and the Navy Reserve Center New Orleans, LA, to NAS JRB New Orleans; relocate 8th Marine Corps District to NAS JRB Fort Worth, TX. The remaining installation management would consolidate with NAS JRB New Orleans.
The collocation of the Navy Reserve Personnel Command, the Enlisted Placement Management Center, and Naval Reserve Recruiting Command at Naval Support Activity Mid-South would create a Navy Human Resources Center of Excellence, improve personnel life-cycle management, and further active and reserve component total force integration and effectiveness. This recommendation would consolidate Reserve personnel and recruiting headquarters with like active component functions in a single location and would eliminate stand-alone headquarters. In addition, activities of the Bureau of Naval Personnel, Navy Manpower Analysis Center and Navy Personnel Research and Development Center were located at Naval Support Activity Mid-South, which would allow for further concentration of functions.
The relocation of the Navy Reserve Command comprised of Navy Reserve Forces Command, Navy Reserve Forces, and Naval Reserve Air Forces, to Naval Support Activity Norfolk would enhance internal active and reserve component interoperability. By locating the reserve headquarters elements on the same base with Fleet Forces Command, its active component headquarters, this recommendation would significantly increase interaction between the two components, produce a reduction in force size by eliminating duplicative staff, and allow for further decreases in staffing size for common support functions. The consolidation of the Navy Reserve Command installation management functions with other Navy Regional organizations would be part of the Department of the Navy efforts to streamline regional management structure and to institute consistent business practices. The relocation of the Marine Forces Reserve HQ and the Marine Corps Reserve Support Command element of Mobilization Command to NAS JRB New Orleans would maintain a central location for management of widely-dispersed Marine Corps Reserve elements and would allow for the consolidation of Marine Reserve management functions. Marine Corps Reserve Support Command was the only geographically separated element of the Marine Forces Reserve. Consolidation with its Headquarters would significantly increase interaction and operational efficiency as well as eliminate duplicative staff. Location of this consolidated headquarters at a joint reserve base would enhance joint service interoperability concepts.
The relocation of 8th Marine Corps District to NAS JRB Fort Worth would move this management organization within their geographic area of responsibility. It would also place them at a major transportation node with reduced average distance to managed recruiting stations.
Relocating these functions would remove the primary missions from Naval Support Activity New Orleans and would either eliminate or move the entirety of the workforce except for those personnel associated with the base operations support function and a number of smaller tenant activities. As a result, retention of Naval Support Activity New Orleans would no longer be required. Accordingly, this recommendation would close the installation and eliminate or relocate the remaining base operations support personnel and tenant activities. Base operations support organizations and tenant activity services that were shared between Naval Support Activity New Orleans and NAS JRB New Orleans would consolidate at NAS JRB New Orleans to support the remaining area population.
The total estimated one-time cost to the Department of Defense to implement this recommendation would be $164.6M. The net of all costs and savings to the Department during the implementation period would be a cost of $86.1M. Annual recurring savings to the Department after implementation would be $36.5M with a payback expected in three years. The net present value of the costs and savings to the Department over 20 years would be a savings of $276.4M. This recommendation indicated impacts of costs at the installations involved, which reported $0.3M in costs for waste management and environmental compliance. These costs were included in the payback calculation. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 2,096 jobs (1,192 direct jobs and 904 indirect jobs) over the 2006-2011 period in the New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner, LA Metropolitan Statistical Area, which would be 0.3 percent of the economic area employment.
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