Huachuca, partners debut homes that wow Soldiers, Families
February 10, 2010
FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz -- Fort Huachuca's leadership has taken steps to ensure that Soldiers looking for the best housing in the Army need look no further than their own backyard. The Fort's new properties are now comparable to their civilian counterparts.
But perhaps the biggest value, according to the reconstructed areas' two newest residents is what the upgrade provides Soldiers and their Families serving in a time of persistent conflict.
More for your dollar
"It's the first time in my career I've felt like I'm getting something better than off post," stated Sgt. 1st Class Stephen Roesel, Company A, Unmanned Aircraft Systems Training Battalion, at the Jan. 28 ribbon cutting ceremony.
My BAH [Basic Allowance for Housing] wouldn't come close to affording something like this," Roesel said.
According to Rick Sperle, a project manager for R.L. Workman, the builders responsible for the senior noncommissioned officer housing project, Roesel is right.
"If we were to build this floor plan downtown [Sierra Vista], it could go for close to $300,000," Sperle said.
Roesel and his family will be the first residents of a nearly 2,300-square-foot property on Meyer Street, located in the reconstructed DeAnza Village community.
Bobbie Roesel described her Huachuca quarters in a single word, "Awesome."
"This is the best family housing we have ever seen, and we have been in the Army 20 years," she said.
Although attracted by the oversized archways, vaulted ceilings with fans, and spacious design, the senior NCO recognized his new home as "Soldier-minded," noting a utility sink in the garage ergonomically placed so that he and his gear can be cleaned before he ever steps foot in the house.
He also touted the quarters as "family-minded," and felt reassured by intelligent features such as rounded counter tops to help prevent his son from "cracking his coconut," grass in the backyard and a high visibility design that allows adults to keep eyes on on their children at all times.
Best in the Army
"The key thing the Soldiers here want is - when they are deployed, away from their families, or busy at work - to be sure there is a place for their Families that is stable, that is nice; so that they don't have to worry and can focus on their mission," said Col. Timothy Faulkner, U.S. Army garrison commander.
"This is just the initial installment of the best housing in the Army, I guarantee it."
Spc. Dana Payton, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 11th Signal Brigade, and husband, Jerome Sr., couldn't agree more.
Payton, a mother of two, is only in her 17th month in the Army. She admitted the new home far exceeded her expectations, adding that her new Castle & Cooke-built property was "gorgeous" and the single home layout in her neighborhood gave her a sense of community, while still respecting the family's "space and privacy."
Her husband, Jerome, summed up the excited new Army couples' thoughts.
"We are just grateful that they are taking care of Soldiers the right way," he said.
"It gives me a chance to focus on what I need to do, and accomplish my mission," Roesel agreed.
The Fort's new units in DeAnza Village were built by R.L. Workman Homes, and Gatewood Village by Castle & Cooke Arizona. Both are working for Michaels Military Housing, a private contractor. The Army announced its selection of Michaels Military Housing, LLC on Mar. 25, 2008 to create the Community Development and Management Plan for Fort Huachuca as part of the Army's Residential Communities Initiative.
The partnership between Michaels Military Housing and Fort Huachuca Army RCI created Mountain Vista Communities.