What are the chances of Huntsville being selected by the Air Force to host the U.S. Space Command Headquarters? Well the odds just got a lot better.
The Redstone Region has been selected as one of six final contenders for the honor and with Huntsville and Redstone Arsenal’s distinguished space and military legacy, state and local leaders think we are in a strong position to make it happen!
The other five sites are Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, Patrick Air Force Base in Florida, Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado and Port San Antonio in Texas.
We are the Rocket City!
“The Redstone region provides an unparalleled workforce for the U.S. Space Command with capabilities that include missile defense, aerospace, and intelligence,” said Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle. “We have the infrastructure capacity, community support, low cost of doing business and high-quality expertise to serve as the headquarters for USSPACECOM. When you analyze all the variables, Huntsville is the clear choice for this vitally important unified combatant command.”
Air Force officials have said previously it could take some six years to build the facilities necessary to house U.S. Space Command, once a location is chosen.
Redstone Arsenal already provides all the assets necessary such as military housing, health care, child care, commissary, and personnel and logistics support to assure the U.S. Space Command.
The region boasts a well-established business, government, and community support ecosystem with a proven record of success in the space industry.
Redstone Arsenal isn’t simply a military installation. It is a federal R&D campus with more than 70 entities including NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center; the Army’s Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Strategic Forces Command headquarters; the Army Materiel Command; the Program Executive Offices for Army Aviation and Missiles & Space; Foreign Military Sales; the majority of the Department of Defense Missile Defense Agency operations; and a wide portfolio of specialized R&D capabilities addressing all aspects of space, missile and missile defense endeavors.
Not to mention, the FBI will have a 4,000-agent presence at a massive campus on the arsenal. This area received a ringing endorsement from David Schlendorf, the FBI’s associate executive assistant director.
“The northern Alabama area and Redstone Arsenal, in particular, offer numerous advantages to the FBI: Secure locations to conduct investigative and administrative operations, lower overall business costs, ample opportunities to leverage existing science and technology expertise and capabilities, proximity to leading universities and colleges and a favorable quality of life for our employees,” he said in the annual Redstone Update presentation recently.
The “Redstone Region” boasts the highest per capita concentration of engineering workforce in the nation. The universities offer research resources specifically tailored to address the most challenging problems facing both our military and other technology-centric agencies.
Huntsville’s world-class aerospace/defense cluster consists of 400 aerospace/defense companies; 80,000 employees in aerospace/defense; the nation’s second largest research park in Cummings Research Park; and more than 30 of the top 40 U.S. defense companies.
Local governments are investing in our success, including $360 million for roads and greenways, plus fiber to the home, retail and dining growth, residential and commercial development, and strategic investments in cyber, geospatial, energy, and biotech.
Furthermore, a cohesive congressional delegation of representatives in the greater North Alabama and South Central Tennessee is well-positioned to support growth, especially on the Appropriations and Armed Services committees.
And as if we need more compelling reasons to take the mantle, we have energy costs nine percent lower than the U.S. average thanks to TVA, and state and local taxes that are 33 percent lower than the U.S. average. Overall, Huntsville’s metro is a low-cost, high-value leader in the space industry with a cost of living 6.6 percent below the U.S. average.
Battle put it simply: “When you analyze all the variables, Huntsville is the clear choice for this vitally important unified combatant command.”