Alabama National Guard conducts armory ribbon-cutting ceremony in Florence

Alabama National Guard hosts ribbon-cutting ceremony for the newly revitalized Fort Cromwell Pickens Readiness Center in Florence, AL

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Armory ribbon-cutting ceremony in Florence

MONTGOMERY, AL (03/04/2020) (readMedia)-- The Alabama National Guard hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday, February 28th, 2020, at the newly revitalized Fort Cromwell Pickens Readiness Center in Florence, AL. The Fort Cromwell Pickens Readiness Center opened in 1979 with an original acquisition cost of $2.2 million. The Readiness Center is 25,399 SF, on approximately 11 acres.

This readiness center is the home of the 115th Expeditionary Signal Battalion. The unit is composed of approximately 200 traditional drilling Soldiers, as well as a full-time unit support staff.

Local dignitaries attending the event included Florence Mayor Steve Holt, the Shoals Chamber of Commerce, the Lauderdale County Commission, Florence City Office, and Brig. Gen. Roger Presley, who currently serves as land component commander for the Alabama National Guard, and who commanded the 115th from January 2007 through July 2009. Additionally, many current and former members of the Alabama Army National Guard were present.

Lt. Col. John Crutcher, commander of the 115th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, presided over the ceremony and provided brief remarks to the audience. "One of the great things we get to do is be there and assist the citizens of Alabama," said Crutcher. "Thank you to this city and Lauderdale County for all the things you do with us and for us. Our partnership with the community is key to our success."

The total revitalization cost was $2.1 million, which included:

* Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing upgrades with energy efficient systems

* Reconfiguration and addition of interior walls, installation of electronic fire alarm, and security systems

* Replacement of all interior floors, ceiling finishes, and all interior lighting with energy efficient systems

* Upgrade to all restrooms and shower

* Replacement of all telecommunications infrastructure

* Upgrade to civilian parking and expansion of military parking

According to an economic analysis conducted, this unit has an economic impact on the local economy in excess of $590,615 annually.