Marine Corps Air Station Ewa
Civilian barracks at Ewa
|Type||Military air station|
|Built||1925 – June 18, 1952|
|In use||1925 - 1952|
|Battles/wars||World War II
* Attack on Pearl Harbor
Marine Corps Air Station Ewa (MCAS Ewa) was a United States Marine Corps air station that was located 17 miles (27 km) west of Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. The base was hit during the attack on Pearl Harbor, and later served as the hub for all Marine aviation units heading into combat in the Pacific Theater during World War II. The base was closed in 1952 because its runways were too short for jet aircraft, and expansion was impossible due to the proximity of Naval Air Station Barbers Point. Ewa has been abandoned since 1952; however, two of its runways are still visible from the air and many of the revetments still remain in good condition.
It was originally founded as an airship base for the United States Navy in 1925. The airship program was cancelled after 3 of the 4 dirigibles located there crashed during the 1930s. The base's upgrade to an air station began in September 1940, and on February 3, 1941 it was commissioned Marine Corps Air Station Ewa.
By the onset of World War II, the air station had four runways and numerous hangars. On December 7, 1941, MCAS Ewa was the first installation hit during the attack on Pearl Harbor. All forty eight aircraft based there were destroyed.
The start of the Korean War saw another surge in activity at MCAS Ewa, but because the runways were becoming more and more unsuitable for jet aircraft, the Marine Corps shifted its aviation assets to Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay. Ewa was officially closed on June 18, 1952 and its property assumed by Naval Air Station Barbers Point.
In 2008, the US Navy announced they would be leasing 499 acres (2.019 km2) of the old air station to Ford Island Properties, who plan on building expensive homes and shopping centers to create an urban center for Kapolei. The Navy has said that 4 to 5 acres (20,000 m2) of the base near the center of the old runways qualifies for the National Register of Historic Places. While some local looking to preserve the field are trying to rally support to make it a National Cemetery, it seems the Navy and Ford Island Properties are expected to conclude their lease agreement in August.
In 2013 the Honolulu City Council moved forwards on a plan to have a road built over the airfield.
- Rottman, Gordon L. (2002). U.S. Marine Corps World War II Order of Battle – Ground and Air Units in the Pacific War. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN 0-313-31906-5.
- "Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields: Hawaii, Southern Oahu Island". .
- "MCAS El Toro History". . Archived from the original on 2009-10-25.
- Cole, William (2008-06-30). "Preserving 'Ewa Marine Corps field an uphill struggle". www.honoluluadvertiser.com. Retrieved 2008-06-30.
- "Developers have WWII airfield in their sights."
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