Guardian Angel Facility Design, Patrick SFB, FL

The 308th Rescue Squadron, Air Force Reserve Guardian Angel Squadron at Patrick SFB, required a consolidated, modern facility to effectively execute their mission to conduct personnel recovery across the full range of military operations and during all phases of joint, coalition, and combined operations. RS&H was selected to lead development of the Customer Criteria Documents (CCD), which developed preliminary building layouts and validated the cost estimate for a new 63,000 square foot Squadron Operations Facility, then provide full multidiscipline A-E design services for this new facility.

During the CCD charrette, the team was evacuated from Patrick SFB in advance of a hurricane. Our team reworked the schedule and process, hosting several virtual design sessions over the following month to arrive at an approved concept design. The team successfully engaged with the government leadership team, project stakeholders, and facility users to achieve a consensus solution and keep the project on schedule.

The new building will house administrative offices, pararescue cage areas, mission alert equipment storage and assembly, communications and life support areas, a weapons vault, medical training area, a climate-controlled warehouse with maintenance and issue areas, and secure squadron operations spaces. Specialty functions include a parachute drying tower, parachute rigging shop, and an aquatic simulator/training pool, which will provide dive training in a controlled environment.

One of the more complex program elements of this project was the aquatic simulator/training pool. The challenges of this element included a 22-foot depth requirement, ground contaminates, and the close proximity to the adjacent river. In addition, cost estimates showed that an in-ground pool would be costly. The design team was able to overcome this challenge by recommending a shallower, 15-foot, above-ground pool. This design recommendation meant less contaminated soil would need to be removed and less dewatering was necessary. The final design included a pool that met the user’s requirements within the allotted budget.

The facility is designed to be a high-performance building with an insulated concrete form envelope, water-cooled chillers with Variable Air Volume (VAV) controls, solar hot water, and LED lighting. It has been designed to provide resiliency against hurricanes, humidity, and saltwater corrosion. These features will allow the Guardian Angel facility to serve the unique needs of multiple users and ensure adaptable space that can support rapid changes in the Special Operations Force (SOF) mission.

Project Details


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