Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base (NAS JRB) New Orleans is a US Navy installation located in Belle Chasse, Louisiana, US.
The base trains naval reservists and provides operational and logistical support for tenant commands and transient aircraft.
NAS JRB New Orleans is spread over 3,800 acres of land. The base employs 5,000 military and Department of Defence (DOD) civilian employees, and also houses reservists, family members as well as retired personnel.
History of the Louisiana base
The Naval history of New Orleans began in 1941 when a Naval Reserve Air Base was set up at Lake Ponchartrain.
The facilities initially built were the hangar, barracks, a small work shop and fuel storage facilities. The facility was designated as a Naval Air Station (NAS) and became a primary training base for naval aviators in November 1942.
The inadequate facilities and urban growth near the air station called for a joint air reserve training centre in the New Orleans area.
An area located near Belle Chasse was considered as the preferred site for the new base. The site included the old Alvin Callender Field.
Construction began in August 1954 and NAS New Orleans was commissioned in December 1957. The Coast Guard Air Station and Naval Air Reserve tactical and non-tactical units VC-13, VP-94 and VR-54 moved from the old location to the new base.
The 926th Troop Carrier Group, Air Force Reserve, was commissioned in 1963. The base was designated as Naval Air Station, Joint Reserve Base in May 1994. It was awarded the Conway Trophy for Base Installation Excellence in 2002.
The NAS JRB served as a rescue and recovery centre of the Department of Defence for serving people hit by Hurricane Katrina. Around 10,000 personnel and eight million pounds of relief supplies were airlifted in to NAS JRB.
The Patrol Squadron nine four was decommissioned in March 2006 and was followed by the withdrawal of the 926th fighter wing in September of the same year.
The airborne early warning squadron (VAW-77) was established at the base in 2008. Several new tenants joined the base in 2009 as part of the 2005 BRAC relocations.
Base operations at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans
The operations department located in building one provides weapons systems, aircraft mission support, flight schedule and equipment maintenance at NAS JRB New Orleans.
The department includes air traffic control, a firehouse, ground electronics maintenance, transient line and weapons divisions. The air station provides round the clock support for the Department of Homeland Security and coastal rescue missions.
NAS JRB garrison facilities
The NAS JRB New Orleans headquarters is situated in building 46 on Russell Avenue. The base has large number of buildings and facilities to serve the tenant commands. These installations are used for the training, repair, storage and administrative purposes.
The military housing complex offers public-private venture (PPV) homes at Belle Chasse and Algiers. Other facilities for families residing at the base include commissary, exchange, fleet and family support centre, galley, navy college, auto hobby shop, library, swimming pools, bowling centre, fitness centre, base chapel and community centre.
NAS JRB New Orleans air facilities are located at Alvin Callender Field. The airfield has two runways surfaced with porous European mix (PEM).
The 4/22 runway has a length of 3,048m and 14/32 runway has a length of 1,829m.
The airfield will be upgraded with a new seven-level air traffic control tower (ACTC) and radar air traffic control facility (RATCF) by 2012.
These facilities provide physical spaces to control IFR and VFR air traffic operations. The new ACTC and RATCF will support the operations of Navy Reserve, Marines Reserve and Coast Guard.
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