Gov. Greg Abbott wants the U.S. Space Force headquarters to be at Ellington Airport.
In a letter to President Donald Trump, Abbott said Texas has the universities and human capital needed to support a Space Force and pitched the location next door to NASA’s home for human spaceflight.
“Houston has supported the aerospace, aviation and defense industries for decades, giving it a workforce that can get the Space Command headquarters up and running as fast as possible,” he wrote.
Ellington’s long military history dates to May 21, 1917, when it became an official training facility during the First World War. It went on to become integral in training military personnel for war, securing the airspace around nearby ports and refineries, practicing lunar landings, rescuing civilians from rough seas and welcoming U.S. presidents and foreign dignitaries on trips to Houston.
Today, it remains home to the Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base, which has units of the Texas Army and Air National Guard, Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve and Coast Guard.
Ellington became home to the country’s 10th FAA-licensed commercial spaceport in June 2015.
“Houston, Texas, home of the Astros and the Rockets, has earned its ‘Space City’ nickname,” Abbott wrote. ” … I hope you will agree with me that the Space Command belongs in Space
Trump signed Space Policy Directive-4 on Feb. 19, calling on the secretary of defense to develop a legislative proposal establishing the Space Force as the sixth branch of the Armed Forces. The Space Force will initially be established within the Department of the Air Force.
The Department of Defense has since sent a bill to Congress. According to CNN, the bill seeks 200 people and $72 million to establish a headquarters for the Space Force.
Arturo Machuca, general manager of Ellington Airport and the Houston Spaceport, was pleased to have Ellington considered for the headquarters.
“It’s just great to see the governor and the state of Texas feel that strong about potentially hosting the command for Space Force,” he said.
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