Construction Projects could hamper first overseas F-35 beddown
By Valerie Insinna
July 25, 2016
The first overseas Air Force base to get the F-35 joint strike fighter is making preparations for the jet’s arrival in the early 2020s, but its commander is worried that the service will not be able to build the new facilities needed to beddown the plane as quickly as anticipated.
Col. Robert Novotny, commander of the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath, told Defense News, a sister publication of Air Force Times, that he is eager to receive the first joint strike fighter jets, but first new facilities must be built and old ones refurbished in order to support the aircraft. The service announced earlier this year that the base — located in in Suffolk, England — had been chosen to receive 54 F-35s in 2020.
That timeline has already been pushed back to the 2021-2022 time frame, Novotny said.[FULL ARTICLE]