Wednesday, August 11, 2010

(empo-tymshft) Let's demolish stuff for healthy living

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a guy.

I am a guy.

These two facts will be key to this post.

But first let us return to a time when Schwarzenegger's native land was the just-defeated enemy in the war of the United States and others against fascist aggression. The great expansion of the California economy that resulted from World War II was followed by an even greater expansion of the California economy that resulted from the Cold War. When I moved to the Inland Empire in the early 1980s, there were military facilities all over the place, and they were supplied by major defense firms that were also all over the place. Southern California wasn't filled with waitresses who wanted to be actresses - Southern California was filled with military officers who wanted to make huge money working for defense subcontractors.

And in a few short years it was over. The Cold War ended, and the buildup of huge military forces was replaced by a rapid reduction in military facilities. Bases were closed, defense contractors laid off thousands, and the region entered a painful new phase.

One of the decommissioned areas was March Air Force Base, way out in the middle of nowhere south of Riverside, and south of the brand-new city of Moreno Valley. March Air Force Base became March Air Reserve Base.

And recently my governor watched as the remaining buildings at March were destroyed. And it sounds like it was pretty cool:

The first step is the removal of some 40 older buildings, a process that began with a ceremony presided over by Schwarzenegger near the intersection of Riverside Drive and Cactus Avenue. Two pieces of heavy equipment demolished the old Air Force child care center that most recently housed the Somerset Academy for special education students.

If you go to the Press-Enterprise article, you will see pictures of the two pieces of heavy equipment.

So what's happening out there? A hospital center is being built:

The governor said the efforts could turn the former base property into what he called "The Mayo Clinic of the West."

"We're celebrating something no one has ever done in the world. We're building the first health and wellness city," said Schwarzenegger, who flew in to March Air Reserve Base.

Oh well, California has always been a land of dreamers.

blog comments powered by Disqus