128th Air Refueling Wing Unveils New Main Gate

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Joshua Halverson
  • 128th Air Refueling Wing

The 128th Air Refueling Wing, Wisconsin Air National Guard, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new front gate complex at their location at General Mitchell Airfield, Milwaukee, Dec. 10.

Col. Adria Zuccaro, Wing Commander of the 128 ARW, along with several distinguished guests attended the event including the City of Cudahy Mayor Thomas Pavlic; Arma Purdy, Chairperson of the 128th Community Council; Brian Dranzik, Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport Director; and representatives from J&B Builders, Inc. and Mead & Hunt.

“We could not have completed this without the help and support of our partners and local community. It is truly an honor to serve in the Greater Milwaukee Area, where many of our elite Airmen live, work and raise their families,” Zuccaro said.

The construction of the new main gate was a result of many years of collaboration between the 128 ARW, Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport, the City of Cudahy, WE Energies, ATT, Union Pacific, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, MKE Fuels LLC, West Shore Pipeline, Federal Aviation Administration, the 128th Community Council and local contractors including Mead & Hunt and J&B Builders, Inc.

“This project is the first actual, substantial investment for the Wing in the City of Cudahy,” Lt. Col. Matthew Lee, Commander of the 128th Civil Engineering Squadron explained. “Therefore, we had to work with the City of Cudahy to extend their city owned utilities to the property to support this construction and future development/expansion south of Grange Ave. Those utilities included water and sanitary sewer while also addressing storm water and floodplain concerns and impacts.”

In addition to securing and protecting equipment and personnel and significantly improving traffic flow, the new gate features a larger “guard shack” and an overhang that will offer protection from the elements for Security Forces personnel working at the gate entrance and exit.

“This new main gate provides a significant improvement in the overall appearance and the traffic flow to the installation. It also provides better protection from the elements and from other potential threats against our Security Forces personnel. Our base is now more secure and that is essential to protecting our forces and operations,” said Lt. Col. Gulczynski, Commander of the 128th Security Forces Squadron.

Construction of the project began in August 2019 and cost approximately $4.4 million to complete, which was fully funded by the National Guard Bureau.

“The facility focuses on protecting ANG employees, Airmen, and equipment by providing a safe and secure means of entry and exit from the facility,” said Lee. “The 128 ARW front gate complex provides for the first time a fully compliant anti-terrorism force protection entry control facility.”