By Laura Levering – Fort Gordon Globe
Fort Gordon and the Central Savannah River Area will continue to see more evidence of growth over the next several years as they prepare for the arrival of U.S. Army Cyber Command in 2020. The area’s latest groundbreaking was one sign of such growth.
Fort Gordon held a Gate 6 and Gordon Highway expansion groundbreaking ceremony May 4 at the intersection of 15th Street and 107th.
The $14 million project includes widening two and a half miles of Gordon Highway to four lanes, the addition of a median and turning lanes to accommodate increased traffic. It also covers the construction of Gate 6. Construction has already begun along the highway and will run from the future site of Gate 6 to Robinson Avenue in Grovetown, Georgia.
Georgia Governor Nathan Deal said that in terms of transportation, the project solves one of the main objectives of the Georgia Department of Transportation, which is to alleviate congestion. More importantly, the project is directly connected to the nation’s security.
“The opening of this gate is in a sense an opening of another gateway of corporation between Fort Gordon and the state of Georgia and all the other partners that are going to be a part of this whole process of improving cyber security for our nation,” Deal said.
Gate 6 will serve as a gateway to the National Security Agency – Georgia and U.S. Army Cyber Command complex. Officials expect an estimated 6,000 personnel will enter the gate during peak hours with a majority going to NSAG.
It is a major milestone and investment in the transformation of the installation that highlights the partnerships and support between Fort Gordon, the Georgia DOT, and leaders from the local, state, and federal levels.
Maj. Gen. John B. Morrison Jr., U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence and Fort Gordon commanding general, said the project is a prime example of a great community project that is mutually beneficial.
“It’s a gateway to the future of not only Fort Gordon, but to the entire CSRA,” Morri son said. “I have said many, many times that we are on a journey, and that we are on this journey together.”
Along with benefiting the community in a traffic and security sense, the project is boosting the economy in a big way with the addition of jobs, said U.S. Congressman Rick Allen.
And despite having challenges along the way, as there are with any major project, GDOT Commissioner Russell McMurry said he is amazed at the record pace in which it is happening.
“We started having some conversations at the very end of 2014 going into 2015 about this possibility, and to be able to stand here at groundbreaking today is in our world record time,” McMurry said. “I’m just super proud of the G-DOT team for partnering with all the local, state and federal partners to be able to get here today.”
Officials expect the project will be completed in 2020.