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NEW YORK CITY-In the largest project the Department of Defense has ever done, the Air Force is preparing to send out a request for proposal for an estimated $500-million housing privatization and improvement initiative at seven bases in the US. A goal of the effort is to increase the percentage of adequate housing stock from 40% to 100%.

During a two-day forum held here, the Air Force met with developers and others interested in learning more about the project. Jones Lang LaSalle is working as the privatization support coordinator.

One developer will be chosen for the endeavor which encompasses bases in Columbus, MS; Goodfellow, TX; Kessler, MS; Laughlin, TX; Maxwell, AL; Randolph, TX; and Vance, OK. An Air Force spokesperson tells GlobeSt.com that using one developer allows for a quicker development process. Also, the size of the project is likely to look more attractive to interested developers. The government offers the conveyance of existing housing units, utility systems and improvements on a 50-year ground lease. There is also a certain amount of government financing involved.

“This is a growing market for private industry,” Col. Leonard A. Patrick tells GlobeSt.com. “This market is on the radar scope.”

As previously reported by GlobeSt.com,the Department of the Air Force selects locally based GMH Communities Trusts’ military housing division as “highest ranked offerer” for a covering between 2,000 and 2,900 housing units at four Air Force bases and is valued at between $200 million and $300 million. A decision on the final selection is expected to be sent to Congress in mid-September.

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