Naval Base Kitsap (NBK) is located on the Kitsap Peninsula in Washington, US. The base was established in 2004 by combining Naval Station Bremerton and Naval Submarine Base Bangor. NBK supports surface ships, fleet ballistic missiles and nuclear submarines homeported at Bremerton and Bangor.
The base is the largest naval facility in Navy Region Northwest. It includes installations at Bremerton, Bangor and Keyport. The base received the 2005 Commander in Chief’s Award for Installation Excellence – the Best Base in the US Navy. It also won the Presidential Energy Management Award in 2009 for its energy and water conservation management.
Naval Base Kitsap history
The Naval Station Puget Sound in Bremerton was established in September 1891 and became a naval shipyard in the early 1900s. The shipyard built sub-chasers, minesweepers, ammunition ships, submarines, ocean-going tugs and small craft during World War I. The shipyard was the only West Coast warship repair facility until 1941.
The shipyard repaired and modernised the five surviving warships damaged in the attack on Pearl Harbour. It repaired, overhauled and refitted hundreds of US and Allied forces ships during World War II and accommodated a wartime workforce of over 32,000 personnel by 1945. It also converted old aircraft carrier flight decks to an angular design during the 1950s.
The shipyard entered a new era of construction by building the KING and COONTZ classes of guided missile frigates in 1957.
Naval activities at Bangor commenced in 1942 when it was used as a site for transporting ammunition to the Pacific Theatre of Operations in World War II. The US Navy later acquired 3,100ha of land on the Hood Canal near Bangor to establish a permanent base. A US Naval ammunition magazine was established in June 1944. It began operations in January 1945. The base continued as a US Navy ammunition depot until 1973.
In 1973, the Bangor base was selected as a home port for the first squadron of the Ohio-class of Trident ballistic missile submarines. The Trident submarine base was officially opened in February 1977. Naval Station Bremerton and Naval Submarine Base Bangor are now part of Naval Base Kitsap, which includes the Strategic Weapons Facility Pacific. The facility provides maintenance, spare parts and stores the nuclear warheads of the Trident ballistic missile.
Naval Base Kitsap operations
NBK is the host command for the naval fleet across West Puget Sound. The base supports a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, two Military Sealift Command combat logistic ships, one submarine tender and 14 submarines of all three classes of the US Navy. NBK is the only base to host three classes of nuclear powered submarines.
Bremerton has nine piers with a total of 3,752m of deepwater mooring space. Individual berths measure from 213m to 417m with alongside depths ranging from 9.1m to 13.4m. All piers pointed north to south have a height of 17ft above tide level. The Puget Sound shipyard features six dry docks.
The Sinclair Inlet provides four mooring buoys. The nearest assigned anchorage lies north-west of Blake Island in Puget Sound. PSNS Bremerton does not have a designated fleet landing for ships using the anchorage.
The SUBASE Bangor has four separate pier complexes including KB Docks, Delta Pier, Marginal Pier and Explosives Handling Wharf.
Marginal Pier South and Delta Pier North and South are used to berth Trident submarines. Explosives Handling Wharf and the drydock on Delta Pier serves a similar purpose.
The Naval Base Kitsap offers childcare programmes, housing initiatives, and homeport and physical readiness programmes. The Jackson Park Housing area features over 800 family houses, a recreational area and a DON Child Development Centre.