In the News


WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Monday at McConnell Air Force Base to celebrate the completion of the hangars where the KC-46 Pegasus will be housed.

After three years, $267 million dollars, and more than 23 million pounds of Kansas steel- McConnell is ready to accept the planes.

"A big commitment that the construction is to the community we had a lot of impact positively from local suppliers and contractors and just for the hangars alone was around 25 million dollars worth of contracts here locally."

Officials with McConnell say this will bring a big boost to the Wichita economy.

Senator Jerry Moran said after the ceremony that the new plane will play a critical role in the United States' military efforts worldwide.

"We have to be prepared in a very dangerous world - and our ability to do that, to deploy equipment and military men and women, is determined by Air Mobility, and that's determined by the ability to have fuel to move those aircraft around the globe."

The new planes aren't at McConnell yet, but they expect them to arrive in the spring of 2018.

"We are ready for the 46, if it came today, we could receive it." says Lt. Haley Renner.

Senator Moran also says this kind of investment in McConnell will ensure the longevity of the facility.

"Investment today means that the military installation will have value into the future. It means that it's being recognized by the Air Force, by the DoD as a place that's important, and much more difficult to reduce its mission or walk away from a place that you've invested these kind of dollars."

And for those in communities tied closely with the base, it's a sign that those relationships will continue for years to come.

"This is a big deal for us, this means that McConnel is gonna be our neighbor for a long long long time." says Derby Mayor Randy White.

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