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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Huntington Hall Revamps Living Quarters for Sailors, Prioritizing Quality of Life

New furniture which consists of a new bed, armoire, nightstands, desks, chairs and a dresser adorns a bright and airy double occupancy room at the Huntington Hall Naval Berthing Facility in Newport News. New furniture was delivered to the berthing facility, along with a host of upgrades to shared bathroom spaces is among the plethora of quality-of-life enhancements at the facility. (U.S. Navy Photo by Max Lonzanida/Released).

NEWPORT NEWS — Huntington Hall Naval Berthing Facility, a vital housing facility for Sailors stationed in Newport News on ships during extended maintenance and construction periods, recently completed a series of renovations aimed at enhancing their quality of life. The highlight of these improvements is the transformation of three-person rooms into two-person living quarters. This significant upgrade was made possible through the introduction of new furniture. The Navy’s dedication to addressing Sailor’s well-being concerns prompted this initiative.

A contractor loads old furniture onto pallets at the Huntington Hall Naval Berthing Facility in Newport New. The palletized furniture will be loaded onto a tractor trailer and eventually transported elsewhere. The berthing facility received new furniture for each room in the barracks, which adds to the ongoing quality of life enhancements at the facility. (U.S. Navy Photo by Max Lonzanida/Released).

“These renovations at Huntington Hall underline the Navy’s dedication to the well-being of our Sailors. By creating better living conditions as we aim to enhance their quality of life,” said Mark Stevens, the Unaccompanied Housing Site Director for Naval Weapons Station (NWS) Yorktown. Stevens pointed out some of the real benefits of this quality-of-life initiative during a visit earlier this week.

Stevens pointed out a contingent of contractors who were busy loading old furniture onto pallets to be transported for disposition in a parking lot behind the facility. “These contractors are loading up two tractor-trailers a day with old furniture,” he said. “In fact, some of this furniture is over 20 years old,” he remarked while watching pallets of old furniture being palletized and plastic-wrapped. Stevens commented on the logistics involved with transitioning every room to two-person living quarters. “We are actually transitioning the building as it is occupied,” he said. “The CVNs get their Sailors to come over here and we do at least ten rooms a day. The Sailors move their personal items out. Contractors come in and move the old furniture out. Another crew comes in and sets up the new furniture,” said Stevens. He also noted that the full conversion from triple to double occupancy is on track for completion next month.

New furniture which consists of a new bed, armoire, night stands, desks, chairs and a dresser adorns a bright and airy double occupancy room at the Huntington Hall Naval Berthing Facility in Newport News. New furniture was delivered to the berthing facility, along with a host of upgrades to shared bathroom spaces is among the plethora of quality of life enhancements at the facility. (U.S. Navy Photo by Max Lonzanida/Released).

A visit to a recently completed room revealed dramatic improvements in space and layout. “New TVs in some of the rooms, brand new and up-to-date furniture, it’s something that our Sailors really appreciate,” said Stevens while showing the layout of a completed room. He also pointed out new basin-style sinks and vanities in the bathrooms, a microwave and a refrigerator among the other amenities. “It really opens up the space,” said Stevens, noting the new layout of the rooms. “I spoke with several CVN sailors yesterday as we completed the first set of rooms, and they thought it was awesome. They love it,” he said.

The installation of new furniture is one of the facets of quality-of-life upgrades at Huntington Hall. The Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) basketball gym’s floor gym floor was sanded down and refinished earlier this year. Huntington Hall’s MWR Fitness Director, Matt Palandro noted the excitement of the newly resurfaced gym floor. “The old floor was very dingy, and our court now is a lighter color and it really brings out the space. Sailors are also excited to use the court,” said Palandro. He noted increased use at the basketball gym with Sailors utilizing the space for group physical training, a resource fair, command awards events, dodgeball sessions, and of course the popular 3-on-3 basketball tournament which concluded last month.

He also noted that MWR-related upgrades include new Play Station 5 consoles, new recreational laptops for Sailors to check out, and free and faster wi-fi for Sailors to utilize. A host of new exercise equipment is also in place including new kettlebells, weights, and stationary bikes to name a few. A new outdoor fitness canopy, complete with solar lighting and outdoor storage is slated to be installed this summer.

A contractor utilizes a forklift to load old furniture that is placed on pallets at the Huntington Hall Naval Berthing Facility, located near Newport News Shipbuilding. The palletized furniture will be loaded onto a tractor trailer and eventually transported elsewhere. The berthing facility received new furniture for each room in the barracks, which adds to the ongoing quality of life enhancements at the facility. (U.S. Navy Photo by Max Lonzanida/Released).

Also on site at Huntington Hall is a full-service Fleet and Family Support Center, whose dedicated and highly capable staff of clinicians, counselors and case managers offer a range of workshops and programs for servicemembers and their dependents to utilize. A mini Navy Exchange, which was one of the first in the region to go cashless is also popular. There is also a small Armed Forces Wellness Center (AFWC) on site.

While the long-term impact of these improvements is still being evaluated, these Quality of Life initiatives mark a promising leap toward creating better living conditions. It reflects the Navy’s unwavering commitment to addressing the challenges faced by its personnel and improving their quality of life.

Quality of Service Director, Supervisor of Shipbuilding Conversion and Repair, Newport News Capt. Randy Buchanan, said, “These improvements aim to enhance the overall Quality of Service we provide for Navy personnel.”

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