Being contracted to carry out work for the US Armed Forces is a matter of great pride and privilege. This stems largely from the fact that the Armed Forces have several strict requirements and they are certainly not an easy client to work with. However, if a company can impress them enough to repeatedly be contracted for their projects, this means that the company possesses certain characteristics which makes it the top choice for the US Armed Forces. Some of these characteristics include a commitment to quality and a high level of discretion. The nature of work undertaken by the US Armed Forces is so sensitive that it is not easy to be one of their trusted contractors. Builders are made privy to building plans and are aware of every detail about sites that they work on. This makes it all the more important that they exercise discretion when working on high-security projects.
One such company that has been able to gain the trust of the US Armed Forces is Stronghold Engineering, Inc. It has completed numerous projects for the Army, Navy and Air Force. In this article, we would be going through some of the projects Stronghold has done for the US Air Force.
Travis Air Force Base
Travis Air Force Base is located in Fairfield, California. Stronghold Engineering was contracted to carry out the replacement of Reservoir 1518 at the Air Force Base. To replace the old reservoir, the old one had to be removed first. The previous reservoir was built above ground and had been reinforced with concrete. After the removal of the old reservoir, the team began construction of the new reservoir. This new reservoir was built over a concrete ring foundation and was reinforced with welded steel. The reservoir was also equipped with a fluoride injection system, a steel tank cathodic protection system, and a reservoir mixing system. The capacity of the new reservoir is 2 million gallons. Though the project initially only involved removing and replacing the old reservoir, the team also did some additional work around the area.
The old fence was removed and replaced with new gates and fencing. A new 12-inch storm basin was also constructed, complete with catch basins. The lighting of the area was done, including laying electrical lines and connections. A new fire hydrant assembly was also installed.
The project cost $2.7 million and was completed over approximately two years. Mr ENS Daniel Eldred, ROICC, said, “The workmanship was spectacular…The field staff was outstanding. They were very helpful and friendly. Overall, the government enjoyed working with Stronghold. They did a great job on the project.”
Los Angeles Air Force Base
This project included building a new shopping centre at the LA Air Force Base in El Segundo, California. The base previously had an old shopping mall that was no longer fit for purpose. To bring the shopping mall in line with modern regulatory and safety requirements, the team started with the removal of hazardous materials. The team also replaced the old concrete footings, structural steel, doors, cabinetry, hardware, paint, and flooring. A new food court was constructed alongside a new Material Processing Area. The total cost of the project was $9.5 million and it was completed in 20 months. The completion of this project has enriched the lives of serving personnel and their families at the air force base.
Hickam Air Force Base
For this project Stronghold was faced with a logistical challenge as this was not based anywhere near their usual place of operations. Instead of California, the team had to complete a project in Oahu, Hawaii. The Mamala Substation at the Hickam Air Force Base in Oahu needed to be upgraded. The estimated cost of the project was $6 million and Stronghold was the primary contractor for this project. The team constructed duct lines and manholes to accommodate two 46kV circuits, a communication system by a Hawaiian communications company, and a new back substation. The project was completed in 16 months. After the electrical system was upgraded the maximum capacity that the system could support was 25.4MVA. By 2007, the capacity had increased to more than 38.5 MVA.
March Air Reserve Base
This project was completed in a short span of seven months and cost $1.2 million. Stronghold Engineering was the primary contractor. The scope of this project entailed the installation of an Aircraft Arresting System at March Air Reserve Base located in Moreno Valley, California. The Aircraft Arresting System or AAS has been built to help pilots that are unable to stop the aircraft during landing or an aborted take-off. The AAS is vital to saving the lives of pilots by preventing their aircraft from overrunning the runway. The system is also important for preventing large-scale damage and saving millions of dollars worth of aircraft.
To install the AAS the existing runways had to be demolished. Once the old runways had been demolished, sections of the runway were excavated. They were then reinforced using sealcoating equipment with asphalt, concrete and joint seal. New electrical stripping and a drainage system was also installed. The team was committed to safety and managed to complete the project without any accidents. The project was completed without any disruption to air traffic because of close collaboration between the Stronghold engineers and the personnel at the Air Force Base. The installation of this AAS makes Stronghold one of the two companies in all of the US to install an AAS of this size.
The Deputy Base Civil Engineer, upon the completion of the project remarked, “The contractor has done an exceptional job designing and completing this project. The government has been very pleased with the work efforts put forth by Stronghold. They continue to excel in any work that is sent their way. They are a great contractor to work with and stay on track and meet all deadlines.”
Stronghold Engineering has been in the business for thirty years now. During this time, the company has continued to expand, owing to its adherence to its core values of quality, safety, teamwork, integrity and commitment. They have repeatedly completed projects within their stipulated deadlines, managed heavy workloads, all without compromising on the quality of their work. This is the reason why they are consistently one of the top contractors for the US Armed Forces.