F-35 Aircraft Maintenance Hangar and Flight Line Apron Expansion


F-35 Aircraft Maintenance Hangar and Flight Line Apron Expansion

Critical to National Security

When Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command approved funding for Marine Corps Air Station Miramar’s first F-35 project, they turned to HDR. The project, scheduled a year earlier than planned, made way for a new state-of-the-art facility to house two squadrons of F-35B and C next-generation Marine fighter aircraft. HDR’s proven record of rapid design execution and extensive hangar and airfield experience was the right choice for both design and construction administration. 

The project is part of a strategic defense initiative critical to national security. Absolute care and attention were given to ensure the facility’s on-time completion to welcome the first F-35s to San Diego. HDR utilized five offices nationwide to provide conceptual design through complete contract documents, plus construction administration services. Numerous workshops and design reviews were conducted with NAVFAC to adapt to the changing needs of the program and MCAS Miramar users as the mission-specific requirements unfolded. 

The scope included a 158,000 square foot 12-bay hangar, a 708,000 square foot parking apron with 24 aircraft shelters, a new apron for 16 C-130 aircraft, plus several small support structures. The hangar has two stories of shop and administration areas. Security was a prime consideration for the building, as was the specialized equipment needed to support the new aircraft. Creating space for the new hangar and apron involved the demolition of 21 existing structures and the redesign of the east end of the airfield. 

HDR’s construction administration support was embedded with the contractor, Harper Construction Company. This helped expedite the team’s responses to Request for Information and submittals, ensuring construction remained on schedule and true to the intent of the design. HCC’s web-based construction management program was used to integrate all the teams and proved effective in identifying and resolving issues. Structural submittals for the hangar roof steel alone totaled over 3000 sheets in five packages. Throughout construction, the Station’s Site Activation Task Force team, Station Air Ops, NAVFAC Southwest’s capital improvements core engineering team, Miramar’s Public Works Department and Field Engineering and Acquisition Department offices all contributed key staff to HCC’s communications meetings. The teams met weekly on quality control plus biweekly steering committee meetings to address challenges posed by stringent program requirements and difficult site conditions. 

Midway through construction, a redesign request by NAVFAC’s F-35 criteria team required an enhancement to the performance of the hangar ductwork which supplies the aircraft with pre-cooled air. HDR worked with NAVFAC and HCC to produce three fast-track design packages to keep HCC’s hangar construction moving and minimize the schedule impact. Close coordination among structural, mechanical and fire protection engineers met stringent performance criteria and review times were slashed to a few days. All stakeholders met their target dates in an impressive display of teamwork.

Images courtesy of Alex Nye 

U.S. Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest

San Diego, CA
United States

158,000 sf 12-bay hanger; 708,000 sf parking apron