|Location: San Antonio, Texas
Total Acreage: 4,017 Acres
Closed: July 2001
Kelly Air Force Base traces its beginnings to 1916, when Maj. Benjamin Foulois selected the site near San Antonio, Texas, for a new aviation field. One of the oldest facilities in the Air Force, the South San Antonio Aviation Camp opened March 27, 1917, as one of the initial World War I Army Air Service installations. During the war, it served as a school for pilots, supply officers, engineers and mechanics, and as an aviation general supply depot.
In June 1917, it became Camp Kelly, then Kelly Field, in honor of George E. M. Kelly, who crashed while attempting to land an aircraft at nearby Fort Sam Houston on May 1, 1911. Read more here.
After more than 30 years of investigation and cleanup, the environmental cleanup program is in the final stage of completion at the former Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. All site investigations are complete, all decision documents have been signed, and cleanup is complete at more than 90 percent of all sites.
For the remaining sites, remedies are in place to remove contaminants from the soil and groundwater, ensuring protection of human health and the environment. More than 600 monitoring locations provide data to be sure the public is protected and the groundwater treatment systems are working properly. The Air Force is committed to this effort and environmental regulators provide oversight and certification. Read more here.
When the Base Realignment and Closure Commission announced the closure of the 4,000 acre Kelly in 1995, the City of San Antonio established the Greater Kelly Development Authority (renamed to Port San Antonio in 2007) to oversee the redevelopment of the former base as Port San Antonio.
While approximately half of the former base was realigned to neighboring Lackland AFB, the port became the recipient of the remaining portion. The new facility was established as an aerospace complex, international airport and industrial hub with two railroads and close access to three interstate highways. Centrally located between the coasts of the United States and along North America's Corridor Coalition corridor between Canada and Mexico, the facility is designated as a Foreign Trade Zone. Read more here.