WIESBADEN, Germany – New equipment and fresh upgrades were on display as senior leaders did a walkthrough inspection of Building 1208 – the first of many projects with completed renovations – as part of U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden’s overall barracks improvement plan, Oct. 17 on Clay Kaserne.
“Are you kidding me, I am ecstatic,” said Sgt 1st Class Will Hayes, acting 1st Sgt. of Main Command Post Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, when asked about his impression of the refurbished barracks space he once thought to be below standard.
It was clear that Hayes was proud of the barracks improvements, as he escorted and briefed U.S. Army Europe and Africa Command Sgt. Maj. Jeremiah Inman through the newly renovated building.
Improving Soldier quality of life is a top issue for leaders at all levels.
“That is the biggest thing for me, making sure the Soldiers are taken care of (…) they have this wonderful space, and great quality of life,” said Hayes. “That is what I want to get after.”
Accompanying Inman and Hayes were USAG Wiesbaden Public Works Director Rod Oshiro and DPW Operations Officer Shawn Priet, whose organization spearheaded Building 1208’s renovation.
“Building 1208 is the first completed project in a line of unaccompanied personnel housing improvements happening across U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden,” according to Priet.
The ongoing barracks improvement plan to upgrade UPH housing and increase single Soldier’s quality of life includes such updates as new floors, paint, furniture, window fixtures, wall-mounted fans, and upgraded kitchen units, cabinets and appliances.
The housing renovations and improvements were heralded as a major step forward by Soldiers who are anxiously awaiting their move-in dates.
“This building is way nicer than what I have lived in. The rooms are a lot bigger than what I live in now,” said Pfc. Jhaiden Hall, an artillery fire control specialist assigned to the MCPC. “(The) building in which I live now is small with zero space.”
Prior to renovations kicking off, Soldiers living in buildings earmarked for repair were moved to other housing locations across the garrison. Those Staff Sgts. who resided in buildings designated for renovation, for example, were relocated into Army family housing in the Crestview military community housing area.
Single Soldier housing residents will see some outside improvements as well. Work is being done to upgrade gazebos, an area where Soldiers often gather for a weekend barbecue. These outside structures are often in common areas and have become rundown over time. Renovations include new roofs and fresh coats of wood stain.
Kitchens on each floor of the renovated buildings will also see a myriad of upgrades that include new floors, fresh paint, and new cabinets and appliances. Garrison public works collaborated with a local kitchen vendor to design a new layout, truly optimizing the available space. Each kitchen will have stainless steel cabinets and counters installed which offers a greater level of durability while still providing the aesthetics of a modern professional kitchen.
Kitchens will also receive new appliances including refrigerators, stove and oven units, range hoods, dishwashers, and microwaves. The new appliances were provided by the housing's central furnishing warehouse.
Another improvement in the newly renovated buildings are the addition of rolladens in each room. The roll-down, black out shades can turn any room pitch black and adds security when installed on room windows.
More than a layer of security, the newly mounted rolladens provide improved sun and heat barrier protection during the summer months, with daily temperatures approaching triple digits.
Before ending his visit, Inman acknowledged several members of the public works team with U.S. Army Europe and Africa coins for their hard work and dedication to the Building 1208 renovation project.