JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – On January 31, 2010, Fort Lewis and McChord Air Force Base will consolidate, creating “Joint Base Lewis-McChord” or JBLM. As a result, JBLM is requesting traffic reporters to refer to the base as “Joint Base Lewis-McChord.” For those us listening to the reports, it will be wise to keep this in mind.
Combining Fort Lewis and McChord AFB comes from the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission decision which recommended the establishment of Joint Base Lewis-McChord. To help the news media, JBLM Public Affairs has sent out a stylebook (PDF download). Since civilians share the area and support the military, I think it appropriate to share what JBLM Public Affairs sent us.
Fort Lewis and McChord AFB have existed, and been a part of the Western Washington lexicon for a very long time. A large part of successfully
transitioning from two separate installations to one joint base is to get people throughout the region to call the fort and base by a new name-Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
We ask that our regional traffic reporters refer to Joint Base Lewis-McChord when referring to traffic situations along the I-5 corridor from exit 116 (Nisqually) to exit 125 (Lakewood/Bridgeport Way).
In addition, please refer to the new names given to the land areas of the former Fort Lewis and McChord AFB: Fort Lewis’ Main Post becomes JBLM Main, Fort Lewis’ North Fort becomes JBLM North, and McChord AFB becomes JBLM McChord Field.
- Fort Lewis began as Camp Lewis in 1917, and was renamed as Fort Lewis in 1927.
- McChord Air Force Base began as McChord Field in 1940 as a part of Fort Lewis. It became independent of Ft. Lewis in 1947 and was renamed McChord AFB following the creation of the U.S. Air Force.