Saturday, April 13, 2013

Sequester won't stop the AFA's glass-house project

Posted By on Sat, Apr 13, 2013 at 11:01 AM

Despite a rollback in federal spending that's having an impact on military operations, the Air Force Academy is moving ahead with its new character and leadership building, which some day might rival the Cadet Chapel for icon status at the academy.

Air Force Academy
  • An artist's rendering of the new AFA addition.

We wrote about this project last year, when we reported on the academy's character development program and whether it's working.

Here's the release on the new construction:

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo., - Construction crews have removed hundreds of tons of dirt and debris as they prepare the site for the ultra-modern, $40 million complex where the Air Force Academy's Center for Character and Leadership Development will be housed starting in late 2014.

The project is an FY 11 appropriation and is not impacted by the sequester.

Character and leadership development is a crucial, all-encompassing part of a cadet's experience at the United States Air Force Academy. The Center for Character and Leadership Development (CCLD) ensures that character development, education and scholarship are major focus of Academy life.

From basic training to graduation, cadets can expect to see character development programs in every aspect of their lives, with the ultimate goal of imbuing them with the inner desire to put integrity first, place service before self, and strive for excellence in all they do.

The Air Force Academy's CCLD has served as a focal point of the Academy's commitment to developing leaders of character since its creation in 1993. Its mission is to advance the understanding, practice and integration of character and leadership development in preparation for service to the nation.

Of the $40 million being spent on the project, $27.5 million comes from the FY 11 military construction budget, and $12.5 million from donors. The architect for the building is Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, the firm that originally planned the Academy campus and designed the buildings, including the Cadet Chapel. The CCLD building is being built in the heart of a National Historic
Landmark District, therefore the Academy has proactively included the historic preservation community in the design.

"The CCLD building is an iconic architectural concept that symbolically state our commitment to character and leadership development," said Duane Boyle, Deputy Director, Directorate of Installations of the Air Force Academy.

"Polaris has long been a navigation tool used to guide the traveler. Likewise, it symbolically relates to one's own ethical and moral journey through life. The steel and glass tower aligns with Polaris sending a powerful message to all that leadership and character development are paramount in all that we do," he said.

"The transparency of the architecture is indicative of the serious nature of its function: the free exchange of thoughts, opinions, and knowledge in an open environment," he continued. . "Our new Center places the Academy at the pinnacle of character and leadership development nationally and will spark the interest of all who believe that our nation's future is based on thoughtful, careful, and meaningful decisions of our leadership, both military and civilian."

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