By 2nd Lt. Briell Zweygardt
Kansas Adjutant General Public Affairs
“Three, two, one, break ground.”
Eight golden shovels broke the ground at Fort Leavenworth Nov. 30, marking the start of construction for the new training barracks for the mission training complex-Leavenworth and readiness center for the 35th Infantry Division.
The official party at the ceremony hosted by the Kansas Army National Guard Facilities Management Office included Kansas Senator Jerry Moran; Lt. Gen. Timothy J. Kadavy, director of the Army National Guard; Maj. Gen. Lee Tafanelli, Kansas adjutant general; Maj. Gen. Victor Braden, commander, 35th Infantry Division; Lt. Col. Kurt Rorvik, commander, MTC-Leavenworth; and Chaplain (Maj.) Joshua Buford, Kansas National Guard full-time support chaplain.
“With the groundbreaking ceremony here for the new barracks at Fort Leavenworth, along with the new headquarters for the 35th Infantry Division,” said Tafanelli, “it really is a special day, as we have an opportunity to set a new chapter for our infrastructure here in Kansas.”
The two facility projects have been in the works since 2004 to create a more cost-efficient training environment for the Army National Guard.
“There was a desire to provide more facilities to reduce costs overall,” said Braden. The new barracks will allow more people to train onsite and avoid losing time from transporting to and from hotels. “By having facilities here, we wouldn’t have housing in different locations and we also wanted to modernize the facilities to meet today’s technology needs and requirements.”
“These two projects are all about readiness and lethality,” said Kadavy. “It’s about training Soldiers and giving them the facilities and the capability to be warfighting capable and governor responsive”
“Fort Leavenworth is an important component of our education and training of Soldiers,” said Moran. “Another good thing happening here at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, means that there’s a bright future for those who serve our nation, but it also means our nation will be more secure and safe.”
“It will help us build readiness and sustain readiness to be ready to deploy, fight and win against any adversary anywhere or anytime,” said Braden.
“I collect the requirements and I validate them at the Department of the Army level,” said Kadavy. “I go and say this is what we need in order to be ready to meet the timelines and the readiness levels that the United States Army needs.”
“Many of the amenities that are going to be in that new headquarters building will really fit the new division and the needs of that division, not only now but well into the future,” said Tafanelli.
“When you get a chance to break ground on a new facility it’s kind of special for not only those who serve today but for those who will serve tomorrow.”