Scott Air Force Base: Wikis


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Scott Air Force Base
MidAmerica St. Louis Airport

Air Mobility Command.svg
Home of Air Mobility Command (AMC)

Scott afb IL - 2 April 1998.jpg
Scott AFB, 2 April 1998
BLV - FAA airport diagram.png
FAA diagram for Scott AFB/MidAmerica
Airport type Military / Public
Owner United States Air Force /
St. Clair County
Location Belleville, Illinois
Elevation AMSL 459 ft / 140 m
Coordinates 38°32′43″N 089°50′07″W / 38.54528°N 89.83528°W / 38.54528; -89.83528
Direction Length Surface
ft m
14L/32R 10,000 3,048 Concrete
14R/32L 8,001 2,439 Asphalt/Concrete
Source: Federal Aviation Administration[1]

Scott Air Force Base (IATA: BLVICAO: KBLVFAA LID: BLV) is a base of the United States Air Force in St. Clair County, Illinois, near Belleville (part of the St. Louis metropolitan area). The base is named after Corporal Frank S. Scott, the first enlisted person to be killed in an aviation crash. The base is operated by the 375th Air Mobility Wing (375 AMW) and is also home to the Air Force Reserve Command's 932d Airlift Wing (932 AW) and the Illinois Air National Guard's 126th Air Refueling Wing (126 ARW), the latter two units being operationally gained by AMC. The residential part of the base is a census-designated place; the population was 2,707 at the 2000 census.

Its airfield is also used by civilian aircraft, with civilian operations at the base referring to the facility as MidAmerica St. Louis Airport. MidAmerica has operated as a Joint Use Airport since beginning operations in November 1997 and has not been served by any commercial airlines since Allegiant Air pulled out of the airport on January 3, 2009. [2][3]



Scott Air Force Base is located at 38°32′39″N 89°51′2″W / 38.54417°N 89.85056°W / 38.54417; -89.85056 (38.544298, -89.850544).[4]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the base has a total area of 9.7 km2 (3.7 sq mi), all land.


A McDonnell Douglas DC-9/C-9A Nightingale aircraft leading a formation that includes a Learjet C-21A (left) and a C-12F Huron (right) over the ramps and runways of Scott AFB, 1993.

As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 2,707 people, 682 households, and 662 families residing on the base. The population density was 721 inhabitants per square mile (278 /km2). There were 715 housing units at an average density of 190.4 inhabitants per square mile (73.5 /km2). The racial makeup of the base was 78.91% White, 13.52% Black or African American, 0.33% Native American, 2.96% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 1.81% from other races, and 2.40% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.06% of the population.

There were 682 households out of which 78.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 90.5% were married couples living together, 4.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 2.9% were non-families. Of all households, 2.8% were made up of individuals, and none had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.83, and the average family size was 3.90.

On the base the population was spread out with 44.7% under the age of 18, 7.8% ages 18 to 24, 40.6% ages 25 to 44, 6.6% ages 45 to 64, and 0.3% were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 22 years. For every 100 females there were 100.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.2 males.

The median income for a household on the base was $51,290, and the median income for a family was $52,258. Males had a median income of $39,289 versus $24,674 for females. The per capita income for the base was $15,421. About 0.9% of families and 1.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.9% of those under age 18 and none of those age 65 or over.


Sign at Belleville Gate entrance. Many buildings on the base are made with a similar style of brickwork.

During World War I, 624 acres (2.53 km2) of land near Belleville, Illinois became a new airfield. The government announced it would name the field after Corporal Frank S. Scott on July 20, 1917; Scott was the first enlisted person to be killed in an aviation crash. Scott remains the only Air Force base in the United States named after an enlisted airman.

In September 1917, the training of airplane pilots began. Most training took place in Curtiss JN-3D “Jennies.” These aircraft were used to develop air ambulances. This early aeromedical evacuation later become a primary role for Scott Air Force Base. At the end of World War I, the field’s squadrons were demobilized. In 1919 the War Department purchased Scott Field and turned it over to the lighter-than-air branch of the Air Corps. This lasted until May 14, 1937, when the lighter-than-air crafts were discontinued.[6]

The field was designated as the new home of the general headquarters of the Air Forces of the entire United States Army on June 2, 1938. To prepare for the new role, the old buildings on Scott Field had to come down; demolition began July 18, 1938. The huge hangar, now useless to the army, was sold to the wreckers for $20,051.00. The mooring mast, the old wooden barracks, and the administration buildings were all wrecked. Colonial style administration buildings, family quarters, barracks, together with new hangars and other buildings (in all 73 major buildings) were erected in a $7,500,000.00 building program.[6]

On June 1, 1939, Scott was designated as the Scott Field branch of the Army Air Corps. Technical Schools and the basic section of the school, which was located at Chanute Field, Rantoul, Illinois, was transferred to Scott Field.[6]

An allotment of $1,710,150.00 was made in August 1941 for the construction of 160 new buildings, because with the designation of Scott as the communications training center of the Air Force, more housing was needed for students. Cantonment areas were constructed in the southeast and northeast sections of the field. A short time later, the Army built an induction center across the Southern Railroad tracks. This area was later annexed to Scott Air Force Base.[6]

In 1952, two additional housing areas were added: Paeglow Apartments, 80 units for officers, and a 1,000-unit "city" north of the base erected under the provisions of the Wherry Housing Act. Also in 1952 a modernization program was begun to provide quarters for bachelor officers and bachelor non-commissioned officers, training areas, and warehouse space at a cost in excess of $14,000,000.00.[6]

Today, Scott is home to the headquarters of many major military organizations, including:

The 375th Air Mobility Wing is also host to more than 30 tenant units, including the Air Force Office of Special Investigations 3rd Field Investigations Region; the 932d Airlift Wing (Air Force Reserve Command); and the 126th Air Refueling Wing (Illinois Air National Guard).[6]

MidAmerica St. Louis Airport

BLV logo.png

MidAmerica St. Louis Airport was created to alleviate some crowding of Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, but has never had service from any major airline and has been criticized as a pork barrel project.[7] Featured several times as a "Fleecing of America" segment on the NBC Nightly News, it was called a "Gateway to Nowhere" by Tom Brokaw, costing taxpayers $313 million.[8] Supporters credit MidAmerica's additional runway with saving Scott AFB from closure during BRAC 2005. They also describe MidAmerica as a "Gateway to the World", citing a new cargo terminal and customs facility designed to attract international cargo.[3] As of January 2010, one air cargo company uses the airport to import flowers from Columbia, totalling one flight each week.[9]

MidAmerica's construction has included creation of the 10,000-foot 14L/32R (east) runway, adding 1,000 feet (300 m) to the existing west runway, adding passenger and cargo terminals on the east side of the facility and a 7,000-foot (2,100 m) taxiway connecting the two runways. A new air traffic control tower staffed by Air Force personnel was also constructed midway between the two runways.[10]

In CY2008, the dual-use facility was ranked 314 in the United States with 27,002 passenger enplanements. This placed it ninth in the state of Illinois.[11] By comparison, Lambert-St. Louis International Airport was ranked 31 with over 6.74 million enplanements. Congestion at Lambert-St. Louis has not been a problem since American Airlines reduced hub operations and a new billion-dollar runway opened. The civil operations are administered by St. Clair County, Illinois, which also pays the maintenance costs for the east runway. Over half of all air operations at the facility utilize the eastern runway.[3]



Scott AFB / MidAmerica St. Louis Airport covers 7,003 acres (28 km2) and has two runways:

  • Runway 14L/32R: 10,000 x 150 ft (3,048 x 46 m), Surface: Concrete, ILS equipped.
  • Runway 14R/32L: 8,001 x 150 ft (2,439 x 46 m), Surface: Asphalt/Concrete, ILS equipped.

See also


PD-icon.svg This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  1. ^ FAA Airport Master Record for BLV (Form 5010 PDF), effective 2007-07-05
  2. ^ St. Louis Post-Dispatch. MidAmerica Wings it Without Allegiant Air. 1/7/2009. Retrieved 1/30/2009.
  3. ^ a b c Imbs, Christine (March 2006). "Gateway to the World". St. Louis Commerce Magazine. Retrieved 28 December 2009.  
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  5. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  6. ^ a b c d e f United States Air Force. Scott Air Force Base History. Accessed December 10, 2006.
  7. ^ Tom Brokaw. It was featured several times on a "Fleecing of America" segment on the NBC evening news.January 5, 1998. May 27, 1999. August 16, 2000.
  8. ^ Marson, Barrett (1998-1-5). "NBC 'Fleecing' Telecast Snipes At MidAmerica Airport". Belleville News-Democrat. Retrieved 28 December 2009.  
  9. ^ NBC Nightly News, January 12, 2009.
  10. ^ Grandone, Jim (February 2000). "Emerging Roles of Scott Air Force Base & MidAmerica". St. Louis Commerce Magazine. Retrieved 28 December 2009.  
  11. ^ "Commercial Service Airports CY2008 Enplanements". FAA. 2009-12-17. Retrieved 28 December 2009.  

External links


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