***image1***A $150 million, 729,000-square-foot retail and entertainment center, the Kaiserslautern Military Community Center, officially broke ground in a symbolic ceremony Dec. 3 and is scheduled to open August 2006.
“We are beginning a new era for Ramstein,” said Brig. Gen. Rosanne Bailey, 435th Air Base Wing and KMC commander. “This facility will support the community as Ramstein assumes the role of the central airlift hub for the European theater.”
The facility, along with other Ramstein construction projects, will support the increase in personnel and passenger traffic, resulting from the closure of Rhein-Main Air Base in 2005, said Capt. Darrell Hahn, 435th Civil Engineer Squadron, Rhein-Main Transition Program team chief.
***image2***The multi-use facility will consolidate retail, services, lodging, dining and administrative support under one roof. It will include a bank, a credit union, an outdoor recreation facility, a travel agency, a sports lounge and a Macaroni Grill restaurant.
The KMCC will also house the world’s largest base exchange, with more than 300,000 square-feet of sales and storage space. In addition, there will be a food court with more than 1,000 seats and four theaters, seating 500 people total.
An eight-story, 350-room lodging facility, within walking distance of the terminal, is set to open in April 2006.
***image3***“The KMCC will become a spirited, people-place and center of the local Kaiserslautern Army and Air Force community, while providing a destination for military personnel and their families throughout Europe and the United Kingdom,” said Col. Shelley Richardson, AAFES Europe Region commander.
Four new traffic circles will be constructed near the KMCC to handle the traffic. There will be 3,200 parking spaces, including a parking garage.
The ownership of several AAFES facilities will transfer back to the bases, including the Vogelweh PowerZone and furniture store. The Ramstein Base Exchange will be turned into a new medical center and the old Ramstein Enlisted Club will become a smaller retail center, said Captain Hahn.
With the closure of Rhein-Main Air Base at the end of 2005, Ramstein will assume the role of the central airlift hub for the European theater.
To support the increase in personnel and passenger traffic that will result from this, a 729,000-foot retail and entertainment center is being built – the KMCC.
***image4***This multi-use facility will consolidate retail, services, lodging, dining, and administrative support under one roof. It will include four theaters, a bank, a credit union, an outdoor recreation facility and a full service travel agency.
The KMCC costs $150 million, and is funded by military construction funds, the Army and Air Force Exchange Service, Service nonappropriated funds and Rhein-Main Transition Program funds.