CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait -- U.S. Army Vice Chief of Staff, Gen. Daniel B. Allyn toured an Army Prepositioned Stocks-5 warehouse managed by the 401st Army Field Support Brigade here Friday, Jan. 13.
"Our Army Prepositioned Stocks enable speed," Allyn said. "They enable speed of getting the readiness for our formations to the point of need regionally, and really globally as you look at our APS sets around the globe."
The tour took place in one of the brigade's brand new state of the art warehouses, where Allyn spoke with 401st AFSB personnel about APS-5's critical role in the U.S. Army Central Command theater.
"Without the availability of APS-5 as an example in the CENTCOM theater, we would not have the readiness necessary to respond to potential crises that don't wait for deployability to be factored in," Allyn said.
"It's a matter of readiness generation," he said. "It's a matter of both force projection and combat power availability at a time of crisis, and all of that is part and parcel of why we have to have our prepositioned stocks fully operational and fully equipped."
The facility in which the conversation took place is one of nine new facilities that opened in November, 2016.
Together, the new facilities provide 576,000 square feet of useable space and are all equipped with climate and humidity control, energy efficient LED lighting, ventilation systems for carbon monoxide, and powerful fire suppression systems, all of which can be controlled by a warehouse manager from a central point.
"APS-5 is critical for Gen. Votel and for the CENTCOM theater, and I think the team here is doing a phenomenal job in optimizing the readiness of the equipment that we have," Allyn said. "Frankly, the climate controlled facilities, in a matter of four years, provide a return on investment.
"So we've got to be able to get the remaining 40 percent of our APS-5 inside climate controlled facilities to be able to both increase readiness and save cost over the long haul."
The recently opened warehouses are expected to house an additional 20 percent of APS-5's combat equipment and eliminate thousands of hours in repairs and millions of dollars in parts, with a projected $60 million saved over the course of four years.
"To be a brigade commander here and have a conversation with the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army is of tremendous value, because he can see how we're operationalizing Army Materiel Command's vision and priorities right here at the tactical point of need," said Col. Aaron Stanek, commander, 401st AFSB.
The 401st AFSB owns and operates APS-5, which is managed in Kuwait by the Army Field Support Battalion-Kuwait and includes an Armored Brigade Combat Team set, an Infantry Brigade Combat Team set, a Sustainment Brigade set, and an Army Watercraft set, totaling about $5.5 billion worth of equipment.
"It's important Gen. Allyn sees that AMC is taking care of the Army's investment," Stanek said. "These warehouses are a demonstration that the Army is looking forward in terms of how we can produce infrastructure that is more effective and efficient. What we want to do is optimize every budget dollar that we get so we can reinvest that cost savings into other things that the Army needs."
The entirety of APS-5 gives strategic planners the opportunity to adapt mission requirements during contingency operations in the region swiftly without having to reach back across the Atlantic Ocean for different or additional combat power.
"I believe the opportunity to see our new facilities will help Gen. Allyn effectively describe to congress how the Army is taking the budget dollars that we receive as a true form of investment," Stanek said.
"In our case here in CENTCOM, that investment is in APS-5, and any investment in APS-5 is an investment in the entire combatant command."