Temporary road to E-4B hangar opens

  • Published
  • 55th Wing Public Affairs

After months of inter-agency coordination, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held October 20, 2023, to celebrate the opening of a new temporary road to the Allman Maintenance Facility, home of the E-4B.

Affectionately known as Route 565, which is the hangar’s building number, the new temporary road drastically cuts transition time for personnel travelling to and from the hangar from the main part of the base.

“This project means a whole lot to me personally,” said Col. Mark Howard, 55th Wing commander. “The Airmen of the 595th Command & Control Group really matter to the 55th Wing and the installation as a whole, so I’m very thankful we were able to do this for them.”

When the runway reopened after an 18-month replacement project in October 2022, most personnel returned to Offutt and quickly settled back into normal flightline operations.

Unfortunately, the 595th C2G weren’t so lucky. Due to the ongoing flood rebuilding efforts, the main thoroughfare to their hangar was cordoned off. The only way to get there was through the flightline, which added a lot of travel time to what was once was a very simple drive.

Therefore, Route 565 essentially reopens the section of Looking Glass Avenue that was inaccessible and connects it to a new patch of blacktop that was previously behind a flightline blast fence.

“I would guess that Col. Howard has been more engaged in this than he is with most construction plans on base,” said Col. David Leaumont, 595th C2G commander, “so we really thank him for that.”

The idea for this temporary road came about after Leaumont provided some feedback from his Airmen to Howard, who was the 55th Wing vice commander at the time.

Howard and the wing took the challenge to heart and worked diligently to see it through.

“The Airmen spoke, and we listened,” Howard said. “We knew we could do better than that and we promised to make something happen for them.”

However, the project was much more complex than anticipated, and took a lot of effort from multiple agencies to see to fruition.

“We hope this is a demonstration of how we can do things as a team and find solutions that not only build morale, but also build efficiency in your organization and your people,” said Lt. Col. Ron Blankenship, Offutt Flood Rebuild Program Management office director. “We were glad to help and do our part.”

Also added during the project were approximately 150 new parking stalls just outside the hangar, which was previously a parking spot for one of the Doomsday Planes.

“We’re grateful our maintainers now have direct access to their building,” Leaumont said. “When they went to lunch, had an appointment, or had to access the main base it meant trying to find a ride, so having this open is a big deal.”

Route 565 will remain in place until the new Nuclear Command, Control and Communications Alert Campus is completed as part of the ongoing flood rebuilding effort.