PANAMA CITY, Fla. — The Air Force Contracting Summit concluded on Friday in Miramar Beach; as we reported on Thursday, Tyndall Air Force Base was a big topic at this year’s summit.

There, base officials were able to network with specialized contractors and give a panel presentation about the base rebuild at the event.

As Tyndall Air Force Base leaders ready the plans for building the ‘base of the future,’ one thing remains a big piece of the puzzle; providing temporary housing solutions for the workers that will be rebuilding the base.

“We know there’s already a shortage of affordable housing,” said Bay County Commissioner Philip “Griff” Griffitts. “The base has informed us that over the course of the construction at any given time there could be 3,000 contractors working on any given day.”

Temporary housing for those workers is something Bay County and Tyndall leadership is working on.

“It will probably be a combination of quite a few things, with that many people needing housing” said Griffitts. “They want to keep it close to the base as well.”

One option on the table is utilizing county property as ‘work villages,’ for campers and trailers both on base and in surrounding communities.
“Springfield, Callaway and Parker, I think you’ll see some of the housing take place in those cities as well,” said Griffitts.

Tyndall leaders will be meeting on the issue in early February to ‘seek innovative solutions.’

Read the entire statement by Brig. Gen. Patrice Melancon, Executive Director for the Tyndall Program Management Office below:

“The Tyndall Program Management Office, alongside the 325th Fighter Wing, has been working together to devise a strategy on how and where we will house construction workers for our craft labor camps as we move forward on the $4.25 billion dollar rebuild of the base. Next week, the Tyndall leadership team, which includes myself and Colonel Brian Laidlaw, the 325th Fighter Wing Commander, will be in Las Vegas at AFWERX which is the Air Force’s Innovation Hub. AFWERX was established by the Air Force to foster an Air Force culture of innovation with the ultimate aim of solving problems. We will be meeting with Air Force and industry leaders to proactively seek innovative solutions to construction and logistics issues that Tyndall may face in the future as we work toward building the base of the future.”

Bay county officials say they’re prepared to help however possible.

“The base is critically important to Bay County and the nation’s defense,” said Griffitts. “We’re going to do everything we can to try to help.”