Air Force officials announced five installations as candidate bases for the next two Air National Guard F-35A locations.
The candidate bases include: Dannelly Field Air Guard Station, Montgomery, Alabama; Gowen Field AGS, Boise, Idaho; Jacksonville AGS Florida, Selfridge Air National Guard Base, Detroit, and Truax AGS, Madison, Wisconsin.
“The Air Force is committed to a deliberate and open process to address F-35 basing,” said Jennifer A. Miller, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations. “As we progress through the basing process, we will share information so interested communities are aware of what to expect.”
The Air Force will now conduct on-the-ground site surveys at each candidate location. Site survey teams will assess each location against operational requirements, potential impacts to existing missions, infrastructure and manpower, and then develop cost estimates to bed down the F-35A.
The preferred and reasonable alternatives are expected to be selected in the spring of 2017 and the Air Force will complete the Environmental Impact Analysis Process before making a final basing decision.
The F-35As are expected to begin arriving at the second and third Air National Guard locations in the early to mid-2020s.
Previously, three active duty operational locations and one Air National Guard location were identified for F-35A basing-Hill AFB, Utah; Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England; and Eielson AFB, Alaska; and Burlington AGS, Vermont.
Press release by Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs, picture by Airman 1st Class Connor J. Marth