Joint Base Lewis–McChord

Joint Base Lewis–McChord
Part of United States Army Installation Management Command
Located near: Lakewood, Washington, U.S.

Artillery Brigade training at JBLM Lewis Main

62d AW C-17 loading Army personnel on JBLM McChord Field
Coordinates 47°06′21″N 122°33′52″W / 47.10583°N 122.56444°W / 47.10583; -122.56444 (Joint Base Lewis-McChord-AR) (Fort Lewis)
47°08′51″N 122°28′46″W / 47.14750°N 122.47944°W / 47.14750; -122.47944 (Joint Base Lewis-McChord-AF) (McChord Fld)
Site information
Controlled by United States Army
Site history
Built 1917
In use 1917–present
Garrison information

Joint Base Headquarters, Joint Base Lewis–McChord
Headquarters and Headquarters Company, JBLM (US Army)

 627th Air Base Group
Airfield information
Elevation AMSL 322 ft / 98 m
Coordinates 47°08′15″N 122°28′35″W / 47.13750°N 122.47639°W / 47.13750; -122.47639Coordinates: 47°08′15″N 122°28′35″W / 47.13750°N 122.47639°W / 47.13750; -122.47639

Location of Joint Base Lewis–McChord

Direction Length Surface
ft m
16/34 10,108 3,081 Asphalt/Concrete
160/340 † 3,000 914 Asphalt
Source: Federal Aviation Administration[1]
† Landing Zone (LZ) is for C-130's only: LZ South (16) / LZ North (34)

Joint Base Lewis–McChord (JBLM) is a U.S. military installation home to I Corps and 62d Airlift Wing located 9.1 miles (14.6 km) south-southwest of Tacoma, Washington under the jurisdiction of the United States Army Joint Base Headquarters, Joint Base Lewis–McChord. The facility is an amalgamation of the United States Army's Fort Lewis and the United States Air Force's McChord Air Force Base which merged on 1 February 2010 into a Joint Base as a result of Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommendations of 2005.

Joint Base Lewis–McChord is a training and mobilization center for all services and is the only Army power projection base west of the Rocky Mountains. Its geographic location provides rapid access to the deep water ports of Tacoma, Olympia and Seattle for deploying equipment. Units can be deployed from McChord Field, and individuals and small groups can also use nearby Sea-Tac Airport. The strategic location of the base provides Air Force units with the ability to conduct combat and humanitarian airlift with the C-17 Globemaster III.[2]

Joint Base Headquarters

The Joint Base Headquarters (JBHQ) operates the installation in support of the warfighting units, their families and the extended military community. The mission of the JBHQ is to provide support to mission commanders and the joint base community, to serve as an enabler to the soldiers as they train and project America's combat power, and to make JBLM the station of choice for American soldiers and their families.[2]

With an Army joint base commander and an Air Force deputy joint base commander, the JBHQ supports the installation through directorates and agencies that provide a full range of city services and quality-of-life functions; everything from facilities maintenance, recreation and family programs to training support and emergency services.[2]

The major organizations that make up the bulk of the JBHQ include:

Additional staff offices that support the installation mission include the Joint Base Public Affairs Office, the Religious Support Office, the Resource Management Office, Equal Employment Opportunity Office, the Joint Base Safety Office and the Plans, Analysis and Integration Office. Other partners who work closely with the JBHQ include the Civilian Personnel Advisory Center, the Mission and Installation Contracting Command and Joint Personal Property Shipping Office.[2]

Two military units support the JBHQ

Provides command and control and administrative oversight to the Airmen who perform installation support duties on behalf of the Joint Base Commander.
Provides administrative oversight to the Army personnel in the JBHQ and supports newly arrived soldiers during their in-processing period.

JBLM Service Members receive medical care through on-base facilities such as Madigan Army Medical Center, the Okubo Clinic, the Nisqually Clinic, and the McChord Clinic.

In 2010, Joint Base Lewis–McChord was called the U.S. military’s “most troubled base” in 2010 by the military’s Stars and Stripes newspaper.[3] By 2015, the base had changed its public image, winning recognition in the Army Communities of Excellence awards program with a Silver Award in 2012, and Bronze Awards in 2013 and 2014.

JBLM overview

JBLM has two Senior Service Component Commanders, one Army (Commander, I Corps) I Corps (United States) and one Air Force (Commander, 62d Airlift Wing) 62d Airlift Wing , and has more than 45,000 Service Members and civilian workers. The post supports over 120,000 military retirees and more than 29,000 family members living both on and off post. JBLM consists of four geographical areas, Lewis Main, Lewis North, McChord Field, and Yakima Training Center. Lewis Main, Lewis North and McChord Field cover over 86,000 acres (35,000 ha); while Yakima Training Center covers 324,000 acres (131,000 ha).

JBLM Lewis Main, Lewis North and McChord Field have abundant high-quality, close-in training areas, including 115 live fire ranges. Additional training space is available at Yakima Training Center in eastern Washington, including maneuver areas and additional live fire ranges.

In 2009, the former Fort Lewis Regional Correction Facility was remodeled and renamed the Northwest Joint Regional Correctional Facility (NWJRCF). The facility houses minimum and medium security prisoners from all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.[4]

JBLM Lewis North hosted the Leader Development and Assessment Course, a capstone program for the U.S. Army's ROTC program until it was relocated to Fort Knox, KY in 2014.[5]

Camp Murray (Washington National Guard) is adjacent to the post.


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website

  1. FAA Airport Master Record for TCM (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective 8 April 2010.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Joint Base Lewis–McChord website
  3. Ratnam, Gopal. "Afghan Shooter's Base Hunkers Down Under International Focus". Bloomberg. Retrieved 7 September 2012.
  4. Retrieved from Northwest Guardian.
  5. Mouze, Vickey. "Leader Development Assessment Course challenges Cadets, evaluates their potential". U.S. Army. Retrieved 21 September 2015.

Further reading

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Fort Lewis.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to McChord Air Force Base.
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