WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP- THE WESTFIELD NEWS) – Officials at Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield are trying to increase security, and their plans for that would involve the leasing of an additional 25 acres of land. Our media partner, the Westfield News reports that the additional land would allow for the construction of a new gate on Southampton Road, which would be farther away from their facilities than the current gate on Falcon Drive.
104th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Jim Keefe said that he change is needed to comply with Air Force requirements, dating back to a 1996 terror attack in Saudi Arabia that killed 19 U.S. servicemen. Keefe and Brian Barnes, the manager of Barnes Municipal Airport, brought the issue before the Westfield City Council during a meeting on Thursday. The council will ultimately have to approve the lease.
The estimated cost of the gate improvement project is $4.4 million. You can read more about the proposal in The Westfield News.