Gunter dorms scheduled for renovation|
by Staff Sgt. Sarah Loicano
Air University Public Affairs
8/24/2012 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. -- A major renovation project on the Gunter Annex dorms, three years in the making, has been finalized and is set to begin in October.
The $3.48 million project includes a complete replacement of the heating and cooling systems, renovation of the bathrooms, new carpet and paint and a sprinkler system installation.
"The overlying reason for the renovation was the heating and air conditioning system was inadequate and outdated," said Senior Master Sgt. James Richardson, first sergeant, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Det. 5 at Gunter. "A secondary reason was a form of mold had begun to grow in the dormitory rooms because of the lack of proper ventilation, heating and air conditioning."
The money for the renovation, which is expected to last about a year, is coming from Air Force Focus Funds, a pool of money the Air Force sets aside for projects designated as Air Force priorities. Mickey Allen, 42nd Civil Engineer Squadron director, said Maxwell had to compete for the money against other Air Force bases.
"Maxwell tried for three years to get money because of the inadequate dorm conditions, so it was a number one project concern for wing leadership," he said.
Once base leadership learned the renovation project would be funded, they had to determine the most cost effective way to move the Gunter dorm residents temporarily. It was decided to move Airmen from Gunter into the Maxwell dorms, and allow the more senior residents to move off base.
"To make room in the Maxwell dorms for the temporary Gunter residents, Airmen who meet certain rank requirements are being allowed to move off base or into privatized base housing," explained Allen.
"We will look at rank and date of rank to determine who will be allowed to move off base. (Across Maxwell and Gunter)
During the dorm renovations on Gunter, Maxwell is going from three to two dorms so we're keeping the more junior Airmen on base."
In total, 32 residents from Maxwell and 27 from Gunter will be allowed to move out of the dorms, and 28 Airmen are moving from the Gunter dorms to Maxwell. The moves will be conducted in phases: Maxwell residents moving off base need to be out of the dorms by Aug. 31 to make room for the Gunter Airmen.
All moves are scheduled to be completed by Sept. 21. Since the same number of Airmen will be living in the dorms, base leaders do not expect the renovation to affect the base population, other than the impact on Airmen who will have to commute. Transportation questions, among other issues, were addressed in two town hall meetings for dorm residents.
"To help alleviate transportation issues, there will be a shuttle running between Maxwell and Gunter in the morning and evenings for Airmen who work on Gunter but who will be living on Maxwell," said Allen. "The shuttle service is open to all Airmen, even if they own a vehicle."