MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan — Residents of five North Area towers will soon have parking spots for two cars if they so choose.

Pacific Air Forces has awarded the base $1.3 million to add about 375 parking spaces to towers 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938 and 1939. The towers share three parking lots, which will be expanded when construction starts this fall, said Lt. Col. David Maharrey, 35th Civil Engineer Squadron commander.

The project will bring the number of spaces at the five towers to about 720 — or two spots per tower resident, plus eight visitor spaces per tower, Maharrey said.

The issue has long been a sore one for tower residents, ever since force-protection landscaping put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks ate up parking spaces. In total, 368 parking spots for 13 towers on base were lost, according to Maharrey. The five towers that will regain parking lost the most space, and residents complained they couldn’t always find parking at their towers.

Last year Brig. Gen. Bill Rew, 35th Fighter Wing and base commander, held a series of meetings at each of the towers to discuss possible parking remedies in the event the base didn’t receive funding for new parking construction.

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Jennifer reports on the U.S. military from Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she writes about the Air Force, Army and DODEA schools. She’s had previous assignments for Stars and Stripes in Japan, reporting from Yokota and Misawa air bases. Before Stripes, she worked for daily newspapers in Wyoming and Colorado. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

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