/ Modified aug 3, 2023 3:06 p.m.

Air Force wants Davis-Monthan AFB to house new unit

The new wing will replace the retiring A-10s.

A-10 over DM An A-10 makes a pass over the runway at Tucson's Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. July 2021.
Christopher Conover/AZPM

The Air Force announced Wednesday that Tucson's Davis-Monthan Air Force Base is the preferred home for a new Special Operations Command wing.

The decision to move operations to Tucson will not become official until an environmental impact analysis is complete.

The new 492nd Special Operations Wing would replace the base's mission for the A-10 over the next five years.

Following the announcement, Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema issued a joint statement with Congressmen Juan Ciscomani and Ruben Gallego praising the decision.

“With its year-round flying weather, extensive training range space, and proximity to other military bases, Southern Arizona is a natural choice to establish this Special Operations Wing in the Southwest. These flying missions are critical to our military’s ability to outcompete our adversaries, and this decision is a positive step towards bringing them to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base that will enable the Air Force to proceed with the next set of site reviews to prepare the base for this transition. We’ll continue working alongside the Tucson community to secure the long-term future of DM,” said Kelly, Sinema, Ciscomani, and Gallego.

The new wing would bring a number of units from other locations to Tucson. New aircraft including OA-1Ks, MC-130s, and HH-60Ws will move to Davis-Monthan in the coming years as part of the transition.

In the past, Air Force officials said the change in mission for Davis-Monthan will not result in a loss of personnel.

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