New Robins AFB Express Underscores ‘Mission-Critical’ Relevancy
The Robins Air Force Base Exchange cut the ribbon on a brand-new Express on Sept. 15, offering Airmen and families a wider merchandise selection, more better-for-you snack and beverage options and a significantly expanded footprint compared to its 30-year-old predecessor.
Housed in a new building fitted with the latest Express branding, finishes and fixtures, the roughly 12,000-square-foot store also adds a quick-serve restaurant, Hunt Brothers Pizza. The previous Express building, located on the same lot, will be demolished.
“This is about quality of life for our families, and, quite frankly, readiness,” said Col. Brian Moore, commander of the 78th Air Base Wing at Robins AFB. “We recruit Airmen, but we retain families. And when AAFES puts this kind of priority for Robins Air Force Base in the forefront, they’re helping us retain families and build readiness. They are a mission-critical part of our team.”
The new Express is part of a $13.5 million construction project that will merge three separate facilities into one and will include a Starbucks, new fuel pumps and a Firestone car care center. Firestone is scheduled to be ready by January with the fuel pumps to follow in February. Starbucks is scheduled to open sometime in early 2021.
The new Express includes a wide selection of better-for-you offerings to support a healthy lifestyle, including salads, yogurt, nuts, juices, fresh fruit and more.
“The old Express was small and offered a small selection,” Robins Exchange General Manager Alex Mamaril said. “This new building really expands on what the Express can offer our military families with more variety and more selection.”
Ground was broken on the new Express in 2018. Construction slowed earlier this year after COVID-19 protocols meant fewer workers were allowed onsite. The pandemic also delayed vendors from sending technicians to install the equipment.
The Express generated $18,000 in sales on grand-opening day.
“Our customers are the best in the world, and they deserve a full Express,” Mamaril said. “It was a lot of fun seeing all of those smiling faces as we opened our doors on a brand-new store experience.”