TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (WMBB) — A major milestone was made in the rebuild of Tyndall Air Force Base.

On Thursday, crews marked the skeletal completion of a 400,000-square-foot lodging facility on base with a topping-out ceremony.

The construction tradition happens when the final structural beam of a building is raised into place, completing the frame.

Many involved in the project signed the beam before it was secured.

“It’s really exciting to start seeing tangible results and see construction happen and to see these types of milestones,” U.S. Air Force Natural Disaster Recovery Division Chief Colonel Robert L. Bartlow Jr. said. “It’s an exciting moment for all of us.”

Once complete, the lodging facility will boast 360 rooms, as well as a restaurant, gym, and training center.

Colonel Bartlow said having this facility on base will greatly increase efficiency.

“This facility hosts a number of exercises where they bring in aircrew and support personnel from other Air Force bases across the United States and even overseas,” Bartlow said. “When you bring those people in, you want them on your installation. It makes it efficient and increases the training time instead of them having to commute from long distances away.”

The facility will sit near the center of all the amenities on base.

“The intent of the rebuild effort was really to consolidate a lot of those morale and wellness programs, facilities and make it accessible not just to those that are on station permanently, but to those that are temporarily on station,” Project Manager Milea Franklin-Webb said.

The building will also be fully storm hardened and can withstand winds up to 165 miles per hour.

Officials expect the lodging facility to be complete in the latter part of 2024.