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Airmen at Minot AFB, N.D., gathered with North Dakota's congressional delegation and local civic leaders to celebrate the opening of the base's new air traffic control tower and base operations building. The ribbon-cutting ceremony took place on Aug. 23, according to a Minot release. The new ATC tower replaces the one built in 1966, according to the release. "The old tower was beyond its years," said Michael Porreca, ATC controller in charge with Minot's 5th Operation Support Squadron. The new tower, construction of which began in spring 2012, is almost twice as spacious as its predecessor and has designated training areas. It can hold 10 and 15 crew members, compared to the five in the old tower, states the release. "Visibility is almost 10-times better," said Porreca. The new base operations building replaces a 1957-vintage facility. It includes designated training space and classrooms as well as conference rooms and flight planning rooms. (Minot report by A1C Lauren Pitts)