Mission Ready at Training Center Cape May

Mission Ready at Training Center Cape May
​U.S. Coast Guard ​Cape May, New Jersey, usa
The advanced $11.4 million station at Training Center Cape May better serves the Coast Guard’s operational needs in the Delaware Bay and mid-Atlantic region.

To sup­port their en­dur­ing mis­sion, the Coast Guard com­mis­sioned the ad­vanced $11.4 mil­lion sta­tion at Train­ing Cen­ter (TRA­CEN) Cape May in New Jer­sey. De­signed and con­structed by CDM Smith, the new sta­tion bet­ter serves the Coast Guard’s op­er­a­tional needs in the Delaware Bay and mid-At­lantic re­gion. The na­tion's only Coast Guard re­cruit train­ing cen­ter, Cape May is also home to three 87-foot search-and-res­cue cut­ters and Aids to Nav­i­ga­tion Team (ANT), which over­sees the re­gion’s nav­i­ga­tion aids and light­houses.

square footage of new training center buildings
project cost
personnel now stationed at Training Center Cape May

Previously, the station and ANT operated from a World War II-era laundry facility and a scattering of undersized and temporary structures. Bringing them together is a state-of-the-art, two- story 29,900-square-foot (sf) multi-mission building that comfortably houses 80 personnel and their equipment. The building provides administrative and operational control space, large training rooms with advanced audio/visual systems, wet rooms, an armory and telecommunications command center, two large boat bays with engineering spaces, and comfortable berthing for the station watch standers and temporarily assigned personnel.

The adjacent new one-story, 6,800-sf vessel support facility includes three open work bays for smaller, towable boats and secure storage for naval engineering supplies, all designed to give staff efficient and effective maintenance space. To support the Coast Guard’s environmental commitment, the LEED®-certified buildings feature local and recycled products, surpass indoor air quality standards, incorporate water-saving landscape design and interior fixtures, and use energy- efficient lighting. Midway through the design, the project team was asked to accommodate the Vessel Boarding Security Team, a homeland security unit that relocated from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Previously, the station and Aids to Navigation Team operated from a World War II-era laundry facility and a scattering of undersized and temporary structures.

Keep­ing the 24-month pro­ject on sched­ule re­quired flex­i­ble and in­no­v­a­tive plan­ning on the busy base. The two new build­ings were to be built on ad­ja­cent sites sep­a­rated by an ac­tive road­way. Op­er­a­tions were to con­tinue in the ex­ist­ing struc­tures and then move to the com­pleted multi-mis­sion build­ing, mak­ing room for the new ves­sel sup­port fa­cil­ity. A unique site de­sign al­lowed the si­mul­ta­ne­ous con­struc­tion of both build­ings by in­cor­po­rat­ing the ex­ist­ing road­way and foot­prints into a uni­fied site. The use of pre-en­gi­neered metal build­ings fur­ther re­duced pro­ject costs and time, and the ocean-side base also re­quired struc­tural and ge­ot­ech­ni­cal en­gi­neers to de­velop ap­pro­pri­ate pile, foun­da­tion and slab de­signs, which al­lowed con­struc­tion to progress while other teams com­pleted their de­signs. 

Today, TRA­CEN truly has a 21st cen­tury fa­cil­ity that sup­ports the U.S. Coast Guard's ob­jec­tives to mod­ern­ize its fa­cil­i­ties and fleet and be as green as pos­si­ble. 

Tim King Tim King
Training Center Cape May is a 21st century facility that supports the Coast Guard's objectives to modernize its facilities and fleet and to be as green as possible.
Did you know? 

Train­ing Cen­ter Cape May fea­tures LEED®-cer­ti­fied build­ings.

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