Army Spends $6 Million On Dining Hall Only To Promptly Close It

REUTERS/Rick Wilking

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The U.S. Army put the finishing touches on a $6 million renovation for a Northern Virginia mess hall in November only to close it roughly six months later.

The Eagle’s Nest Dining Hall at Fort Belvoir in Alexandria, Va., will be closed by the end of June, just 6 months after renovations were completed, Government Executive reports.

The mess no longer fulfills it’s mission “to support soldiers and other service members who hold meal cards entitling them to meals at dining facilities,” Dan Carlson, chief of the U.S. Army Sustainment Command’s Public Affairs Office told Government Executive.

The dining hall is open to personnel stationed at Ft. Belvoir, and not to civilians. Carlson said there are no active servicemen holding meal cards stationed at the base, and general personnel use of the facility “was below 5 percent, and its contract costs were the highest in the Army for the number of customers supported, which makes it uneconomical to continue operations.”

According to the official Ft. Belvoir website, the roster of military organizations that operate out of the Army base “reads like a ‘Who’s Who’ of the Department of Defense.”

The newly-renovated dining hall re-opened last November with new flooring, lighting, ceilings, furniture and bathrooms. “Everything you see in here is brand new,” a supply chief for the Logistics Readiness Center boasted.

Retired Navy commander Wayne Johnson, who regularly uses the Eagle’s Nest Dining Hall, said the past 3 years of construction made eating in the dining hall inconvenient, which caused the low use of the facility. “It’s a classic example of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing, or not caring,” Johnson said.

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Tags : u s army
Thomas Phippen