Peterson to break ground on $14.4 million space education center

Peterson Air Force Base’s Space Education and Training Center will soon have a new on-base home.

After six years of operating at an off-base location, the Air Force will break ground Thursday on a new $14.4 million facility which will house the National Security Space Institute and the Advanced Space Operations School. The center will be Air Force Space Command’s state-of-the-art training and education facility for space professionals.

Moving the campus from its current site will address force protection concerns, officials say. The new center will be open in 2012.

Since 2004, the SETC has operated from a leased commercial facility in Colorado Springs because adequate facilities didn’t exist at Peterson. The current facility does not meet all the force-protection requirements set by the Department of Defense after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

The SECT provides training and advanced education to more than 2,200 space professionals annually.

PCL, a Denver construction firm, won the contract to build the new facility.