This artist's rendering shows what the new Army lodging will look like upon completion in 2014. The hotel will feature 860 rooms, including units that meet American with Disabilities Act standards.

FORT BENNING, Ga. (Oct. 17, 2012) -- Construction began recently on a new 860-room hotel on Main Post. Scheduled to open late in 2014, the hotel will be situated just outside Fort Benning's historic district, on Ingersoll Street across from the movie theater.

"It really is a great location," said Charlotte Jackson, chief of business operations, Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation. "What this does is centralize the lodging, making it more convenient for Soldiers and Families. You've got a bank. You've got Huddle House across the street. You've got the shoppette, the movie theater, Java Café. You've got the chapel, which is right next door, child care center down the street. Soldiers and Families can walk to all the amenities. The location is just perfect."

Since it is located adjacent to the historic district, the completed hotel will have a Spanish Mission architectural style to blend with its surroundings.

"I think its going to blend perfectly," Jackson said. "I think when they're finished it's going to look like the building's always been there, like it was meant to be there."

The new facility, which will span 450,000 square feet, will provide lodging for Soldiers and Family members who are PCSing, TDY or just visiting the installation.

"This new hotel replaces the 1,175 guest rooms that do not meet the Army Lodging Standards," Jackson said. "Fort Benning's temporary quarters were split among a number of different buildings, including Olson Hall, Gavin Hall, McVeigh Hall, Towle Hall and McIver Complex. Over the past two years, some rooms have been turned back to the installation … leaving lodging with a total of 604 rooms available as official lodging. When it's built, the end state will be 920 rooms."

Although construction on the hotel just began, planning for its arrival started in 2005. The design includes extended-stay rooms, suites, handicap-accessible rooms and more than 500 parking spaces. Like all new construction on Fort Benning, when completed, it will be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified at the silver level.

"We are just so excited," Jackson said. "It's giving (Soldiers and Families) the facility they deserve: a modern, up-to-date, state-of-the-art hotel. It's going to be so nice."

A ground-breaking ceremony will be scheduled this fall. Keep reading The Bayonet's community announcements on Page B4 for information on when it will be.

Page last updated Fri October 19th, 2012 at 09:07