MADISON, Wis. — As the Wisconsin Air National Guard’s 115th Fighter Wing busily continues to convert to the F-35 Lightning II aircraft, the base broke ground on a new medical readiness building.

While the medical readiness building was originally programmed in 2013, long before the aircraft conversion process began, it just recently received the final approval. Ground was broken for the facility Nov. 7.

“At one point in the design process we almost lost the project to 2026,” said 1st Lt. Cory Corson, the contracting officer’s representative assigned to the 115th Civil Engineer Squadron. “With all the F-35 projects going on and the movement of personnel it all just happened to work out.”

The new two-story building will be a high-performance sustainable building that will provide the 115th Medical Group with dedicated work centers, power and utility savings, and a pull-through garage for the chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive enhanced response force package (CERFP). The 115th Medical Group is also part of the CERFP, a joint Army-Air Guard unit whose primary mission is to provide immediate incident response to natural and man-made disasters.

“For the first time, the 115th Bioenvironmental Engineering Office will have a lab and equipment area enhancing our ability to conduct occupational health and industrial hygiene sampling,” said Master Sgt. Hannah Alvarado, the superintendent of the 115th Bioenvironmental Engineering Office. “We couldn’t ask for better timing with our increased workload to ensure the safety and health of our unit members during the conversion.”

Along with dedicated work centers, the new building will allow the medical team to be reunited for the first time in more than 10 years.

“This is like having a bright new beginning,” said Tech. Sgt. Brittany Reynolds, an aerospace medical technician assigned to the 115th Medical Group. “We will finally be together as a team under one roof, united.”

Not only will being reunited be a force multiplier for the medical team but it will allow those receiving training and care to have a better overall experience.

“Being under one roof will improve communication, productivity, team cohesiveness, networking and CERFP response time,” said Lt. Col. Jessica Sullivan, the 115th Medical Group commander. “While we don’t expect to move into the facility until spring of 2024, we are enthralled by the enhanced capabilities we will be able to provide to the public, the base and the training requirements of the Air National Guard and U.S. Air Force.”

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