The United States is rapidly expanding the capacity of its second base in Romania in Aranyosgyéres (Câmpia Turzii, Cluj county). Meanwhile, a real city for NATO’s 10,000 soldiers is being built near the Black Sea port of Constanta.
During the summer, the United States Air Force has made major strides in the development of its $150 million Transylvanian base. II is the second-largest military base available to the Americans after the Mikhail Kogălniceanu base in Constanta County. The United States cited geostrategic reasons for the development.
The expansion of the Transylvanian base is designed to allow for more large cargo planes and fighters jet to land, the storage of even more ammunition, and allow the U.S. to respond quickly and effectively to operations that threaten security in the region. The U.S. Air Force does not hide its goal of providing a long-term, stable presence for its forces in Romania.
Aranyosgyéres became key in this endeavor, but state-of-the-art developments are needed for even safer mobility and the storage of military equipment. The U.S. plans to spend $30 million to modernize the runway so that the base can also accommodate heavy cargo aircraft, in parallel with the expansion of combat stationing and the construction of an access road to the ammunition depot.
Another $32 million will be invested in the construction of a fuel storage warehouse and an additional $8.6 million will be put towards the development of the base by the end of the year. Meanwhile, the Mihail Kogălniceanu base 25 kilometers from Constanta would be expanded to 2,200 hectares to house some 10,000 NATO soldiers and civilian personnel.
Within 20 years, the U.S. will effectively build a military town at the location, with €400 million expected to be put towards this purpose, including the cost of land expropriations. The investment has attracted a lot of businesses to the area, the value of plots and houses has increased, and renting real estate is already more expensive than in the county seat. In the settlement, locals will soon be able to decide in a referendum whether the village will move to city status. Constanta also hopes for economic development from the American presence.
In line with NATO expectations, Romania is spending more and more money on its armed forces and hopes to reach the required 2 percent of GDP by 2024 or 2025.