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Armed Forces Service Center moves in November to renovated space on Concourse A

The Armed Forces Service Center (AFSC) at MSP is getting ready to move into a newly built, spacious location above the Concourse A food court in Terminal 1. The facility officially opens Friday, Nov. 8 at noon.

Demolition of the current location - on the mezzanine level overlooking Terminal 1’s ticketing lobby – will make way for renovation work to be completed in that area.

The AFSC at MSP Airport serves active military and their dependents who are traveling, as well as retired military members and their dependents on a space-available basis.

“We’ve been open since 1970, and we never close our doors,” said Debra Cain, executive director of the AFSC.

Cain and her staff of volunteers are planning for a seamless move with minimal disruption to service members who may be utilizing the center prior to the move.  

A host of improvements

The new location is two-and-a-half times larger than the current, at 4,900 square feet, and will feature additional amenities for the growing number of military service members who pass through the center’s doors. At peak times of the year, the AFSC can serve 2,000 visitors in a month.

“When you come up the elevator, you’ll step into a dedicated public lobby area,” Cain said. The new AFSC will have a small business center and a long counter where guests can plug in devices to work or charge their batteries.

Other amenities include:

  • Room for carry-on bags
  • A lounge area with four sofas and six recliners
  • Two large TVs
  • A dining room with seating for 10 (6 more than today)
  • 10 bunks for females (4 more than today)
  • 30 bunks for males (10 more than today)
  • A lactation room
  • A crib
  • A conference room for up to 14 people
  • Meet and greet rooms for arriving service members
  • Laundry room
  • Children’s playroom
  • Flight Information displays (a big deal for the AFSC’s visitors)

The center’s staff of volunteers – totaling about 200 people, ages 45 to 93 – will also have their own refrigerator and coat room.

And the post-security location is an added convenience for service members who are making connections.

“The additional space we get on Concourse A is a huge benefit to our entire operation,” Cain said. “We launch our 50th anniversary in January, and we couldn’t be prouder of our new home.”