Before occupying the Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD)
was based out of Ent Air Force Base. The base was first established during the rapid mobilization of World War II as the Colorado Springs Tent Camp, home of the Second Air Force on the grounds of a former sanatorium. Following the war, the first air defense radar system in the United States was headquartered at the renamed base.
However, it quickly became obvious that the repurposed sanatorium presented an easy and attractive target, and the Air Force laid plans to build both a fortified temporary command building offsite in Colorado Springs while constructing the massive underground facility at Cheyenne Mountain. In addition to serving as the first home of the Aerospace Defense Command (ADC) and North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), Ent Air Force Base headquartered the first Aerospace Surveillance and Control Squadron; at the time, it was the first and largest military space apparatus in the “Western” world.
In 1975, the base became the “Ent Annex” to the Cheyenne Mountain site, and its Air Defense Command SPACETRACK Center and NORAD Space Detection and Tracking System (SPADATS) Center were subsequently moved to the Cheyenne Mountain location. That same year, the U.S. Army Air Defense command (which was based in the complex) was inactivated; other squadrons on site, such as the 14th Aerospace Force, were also inactivated and reassigned. “Ent Annex” was declared excess in 1976. The site later became home to the United States Olympic Training Center, the construction of which was completed in 1978.
FortWiki. "Ent Air Force Base
." Accessed August 28, 2020.
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