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Fort Lewis Army Base in Pierce, WA Washington Military Bases


In 2010, as the result of the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC), Fort Lewis, was merged with McChord Air Force Base to create Joint Base Lewis- McChord, also referred to as JBLM. Joint Base Lewis-McChord is found in the central western Puget Sound area of Washington State, falling within both Thurston and Pierce County. The base is approximately 14 miles from east of Olympia and 12 miles south of Tacoma. JBLM is also a short drive to Mount Rainer National Park and Snoqualmie National Forest.



Fort Lewis began life as Camp Lewis after congressional approval in 1916. Named for the famed explorer Meriwether Lewis of the Lewis and Clark Expedition and subsequent Louisiana Purchase, the base first opened in 1917. The initial occupants were Army recruits that were being trained for the front lines of combat in World War I.


Shortly after its initial mission of training Army recruits the base was rechristened as Fort Lewis and in 1930 an air installation was built.


The Army Airfield known as Tacoma Field existed under the control of an Army Commander for 10 years until, in 1940 it was renamed for a former Chief in Headquarters Army Air Corps, Colonel William McChord. McChord Field remained under command of the Army until 1947 when the United States Air Force was established. At that time, the Department of The Army relinquished control of McChord Field to the Air Force and the base was renamed McChord Air Force Base.


Fort Lewis continued to operate autonomously for 63 years under control of the Army while nearby McChord AFB continued as a U.S. Air Force installation. In 2010 the bases were merged into one of 12 joint bases worldwide. The base is jointly commanded by both Army and Air Force personnel at the command and enlisted level.

JBLM Mission


Joint Base Lewis-McChord serves as both a training and mobilization center for multiple components of the U.S. Armed Forces. The strategic placement of the base on the west coast allows it serve multiple roles for all facets of the armed services, particularly in the Pacific region. Joint Base Lewis-McChord is home to several major units of the Air Force and Army Including US Pacific Command Headquarters, I Corps, the 7th Infantry Division, 62nd Airlift Wing, 446th Airlift Wing and Air Force Special Operations Command. The base is also home to several detachments of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps along with several guard and reserve units.

Other Components


In addition to the main training areas of the base JBLM is home to two additional components. Yakima Training Center, also known at YTC is a full service training facility used by all branches of the armed services. The terrain of the area is very similar to Afghanistan and is used for training with armor, artillery, infantry and aircraft.


The second component of the base is an area for the Washington Air National Guard. An area directly adjacent to the main post, Camp Murray, serves as the headquarters for the Washington Air National Guard and is used as a training and muster area.

Land & Population


Joint Base Lewis-McChord covers 647 square miles with 505 square miles of the area being occupied by the Yakima Training Center. The current base population is 109,300 personnel which reflects a mixed population of active duty service members, reserve and National Guard personnel, family members, support staff and civilian employees.

Family Housing


Joint Base Lewis-McChord maintains 4600 single, duplex and multifamily housing units for base personnel. There are however plans to expand the number of on base housing units. The base Family Service office works with service member families and the local community to find suitable housing in the area if on post housing is not available.



There are currently no schools of any level at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Children of service members must register and attend schools in the surrounding local community. There are however bus and transportation services available for all children.

Daily Living


Joint Base Lewis-McChord is one of the most requested duty stations in the U.S. Armed Forces. It provides all the amenities of local in town living and is conveniently mapped out within the installation. There are three commissaries and shopping centers with full PXs’. The shopping centers offer dine in restaurants and fast food options, a variety of stores, banking, dry cleaning, gas stations, movie theaters and auto repair.


Religious facilities are available for Jewish, Catholic, Christian and Protestant denominations with several other denominations being found near the base. Army Community Services and the office of Family and Soldier Morale assist with any special needs of the base residents.

Welfare and Recreation centers provide several options for base personnel and their families.


Options include ice skating, golf courses, gyms, pools, travel services and a campground with cabins and RV’s for rent. Joint Base Lewis-McChord is also home to an Army and Air Museum.

Visiting JBLM


Joint Base Lewis-McChord is not open to public. Access to the base requires a current Department of Defense ID or a visitors pass from the main office. The base is however open to the public in May for the annual Armed Forces Weekend.

Joint Base Lewis-Mc-Chord



Joint Base Lewis-Mc-Chord is a U.S military installation located in the Pacific Northwest region of Washington State and was named in honor of the famous Lewis and Clark Expedition. The joint base is located 9.1 miles south-southwest of  Tacoma under the jurisdiction of the U.S Army Joint Base Garrison.



The consolidation of Fort Lewis and McChord Air Force base began operation as a Joint Base in January 2010.  We are one of 12 new joint bases created by the 2005 Base Realignment and Closing Commission.  The new joint base has 93 years of service history and is the oldest military installation in the Pacific Northwest.  Camp Lewis was established in 1917, The same year the U.S. Air Force became a separate branch of the Armed Forces.




Joint Base Lewis-McChord is a training and mobilization center for all services and is the only Army power-projection platform west of the Rockies.  Its key geographic location provides rapid access to the deep-water ports of Tacoma, Olympia and Seattle for deploying equipment.  Units can be deployed from JBLM-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 to any location in the world with the C-17A Globemaster III, the newest, most flexible cargo aircraft in the force.


Population Served


The projected population of JBLM in 2011 is 109,300: 35,000 active duty, 6,000 Reserve and National Guard, 53,800 Family members, and 14,500 civilian and contract employees.


Base Transportation


Pierce Transit offers service to JBLM Madigan Medical Center on bus route 206 and from JBLM-McChord Field on bus route 300 to South Tacoma Way and the Tacoma Mall Transit Center.  For additional information about bus routes, rates, schedules and car/van pools, call (253) 581-8000 .  Taxi services are available in and around JBLM and Lakewood.  Call Ace Taxi, (253) 589-1000 or Fort Lewis Taxi, (253) 582-3000


Temporary Quarters


Families may stay in temporary lodging such as the  Lewis Lodge JBLM-Main while waiting for on post housing or locating housing off post. There are 100 Rooms, 45 with kitchenettes, 5 rooms that are handicap accessible with kitchenette, 5 one bedroom cabins designated as pet facilities. If lodging facilities are full, arrangements can be made by the desk clerk for hotels at a reduced rate. Reservations for PCS and TDY personnel can be made by writing  Lewis Lodge, P.O. Box 33085, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-0085, or call commercial 253-964-0211, 967-2815 or DSN 312-357-5051. For information on rates, contact the  Lewis Lodge. Reservations desk is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for customer convenience. JBLM-McChord Field’s Evergreen Inn reservation and information line call 253-982-5613 or DSN 312-382-5613.


Relocation Assistance


Beginning January 2012 the Joint Base Newcomers’ Orientation will be held on the second and last Tuesday of the month.  The briefing is mandatory and must be attended within 30 days of assignment by Captains, Lieutenants, Warrant Officers Two and below, and E-6 and below.  Spouses, senior officers and senior noncommissioned officers are also encouraged to attend.  Complimentary Lunch and on-site child care are provided.


To reach the Loan Closet, call 253-967-3635 or DSN: 312-357-3635.  FAX: 253-967-3607 or DSN 312-357-3607


Critical Installation Information


If you arrive by commercial airline, information and assistance are available at the USO in the Seattle-Tacoma (Sea-Tac) International Airport.  Commercial transportation is available from the airport directly to JBLM.  While awaiting transportation, you and your Family may relax in the USO lounge on the second floor.  For shuttle service, go through Door 00 all the way to the end.  Shuttle bus transportation can be obtained directly to JBLM-McChord Field and to JBLM-Lewis Main.  You will have to take a taxi or rental car, if you arrive after midnight.  If you arrive by train, Tacoma is the stop nearest to base.  Taxi and bus services are available from the station to JBLM.  Those traveling by bus can make connections directly to the base.  If you are driving, you should have no trouble finding JBLM.  Interstate 5 goes right by Exit 125 which will take you to JBLM-McChord Field, Main gate, which is open 24 hours a day. (For Air Force Personnel) or Exit 120 will take you to JBLM-Lewis Main, Liberty Gate, which is open 24 hours a day. (For Army Personnel)


Contact Information


Adult Education Centers

Stone Education Center

6242 Colorado Avenue

Bldg 6242

Box 339500 MS20g

Joint Base Lewis-Mcchord , WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-7174

Phone (DSN) 312-357-7295


Barracks/Single Service Member Housing

Joint Base Lewis – McChord Reception

2140 Liggett Avenue

Bldg 2140

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-7004

Fax 253-966-0634

Fax (DSN) 312-347-0634


Beneficiary Counseling Assistance Coordinators


9040 Fitzsimmons Drive

Bldg 9040, MAMC

Box 339500 MS 56

Joint Base Lewis-McChord , WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-968-3348 / 253-968-3491 / 253-968-2720

Phone (DSN) 312-782-3348/3491/2720

Fax 253-968-1328


Child Development Centers

Clarkmoor Child Development Center

2295 Bitar Avenue

Box 339500 MS 20

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-2300 / 253-967-7561

Phone (DSN) 312-357-2300/7561


Citizenship and Immigration Services

Relocation Readiness Program (RRP)

2140 Liggett Avenue

Bldg 2140, Room 400

Box 339500 MS 20

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-3628 / 253-967-3633 / 253-967-3550

Phone (DSN) 312-357-3628

Fax 253-967-3607

Fax (DSN) 312-357-3607


Civilian Personnel Office

Civilian Personnel Advisory Center

2015 Pendleton & N. 4th Street

Bldg 2015

Box 339500 MS 37

Joint Base Lewis-McChord , WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-2131 / 253-967-2133

Phone (DSN) 312-357-2131/ 2133


Citizenship and Immigration Services

Relocation Readiness Program (RRP)

2140 Liggett Avenue

Bldg 2140, Room 400

Box 339500 MS 20

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-3628 / 253-967-3633 / 253-967-3550

Phone (DSN) 312-357-3628

Fax 253-967-3607

Fax (DSN) 312-357-3607




5275 Pendleton Road

Bldg 5275

Box 339500 MS 45

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433–9500

Phone 253-966-3141 / 253-966-8475

Phone (DSN) 312-347-8475

Fax (DSN) 312-357-0181


EFMP – Enrollment

Madigan Healthcare System

9040 Fitzsimmons Drive

Bldg 9040

Box 339500 MS 56

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-968-1370 / 253-968-0254

Phone (DSN) 312-782-1370

Fax 253-968-3084


EFMP – Family Support

EFMP Family Support


ATTN: Waller Hall BLDG 2140 RM 400

Box 339500 MS 20

Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9500

Phone 253-967-9704