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Clothing sales store relocates

By Mike Joseph | 502nd Air Base Wing OL-A Public Affairs | July 23, 2010

LACKLAND AIR FORCE BASE, Texas — The new home of the Lackland military clothing sales store is the latest example of another successful "Extreme Makeover - Base Edition."

Army and Air Force Exchange Services showed off the clothing store's new location at 1461 Patrick St., in Bldg. 7037, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday. The facility is south of the mini mall on the base's military training side.

The AAFES store was moved from Bldg. 6659, 1520 Kirtland Drive. That building, MCSS' home since 1984, will be demolished in August to make way for next year's beginning construction on Airman Training Complex No. 3.

"I remember when it was a skating rink," Shelly Armstrong, AAFES general manager, San Antonio exchange, said about the new MCSS. She had spent part of her youth at Lackland when her father was stationed on base.

"If you saw what it was before and then see it now, you'd think it's not the same building," Ms. Armstrong said.

In addition to being a skating rink at one time, the building was also once used as a mini mall. It was last occupied by pets of Hurricane Katrina refugees in August 2005.

Working with Simplified Acquisition Base Engineering Requirements (SABER), the structure was designed for the clothing sales store's needs while meeting new AAFES display standards.

"We gutted it and started over," said Larry Adkison, SABER chief, 802nd Civil Engineer Squadron. "Basically, it's a brand new building."

Stripped to its shell, the $1.7 million, nearly year-long project included replacing the electrical system, air conditioning, plumbing, bathrooms and roof while adding a new fire sprinkler system. The facility is now handicap accessible and meets standards set in the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Ms. Armstrong said the staff was excited about moving to the 19,425-square foot facility, which will also include alteration services.

"The other building was an old dining facility that was turned into an MCSS," Ms. Armstrong said. "Now we have a nice stock room without all the nooks and crannies," said Ms. Armstrong.