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KNUQ

Moffett Federal Airfield

Moffett Federal Airfield is a joint civil-military airport that is currently leased by Google, who signed a 60-year lease in 2014.

Airport history

In 1930, Sunnyvale, California paid nearly $480,000 to acquire a 1,000-acre plot of farmland that bordered San Francisco Bay. The funds were raised by the citizens of Santa Clara County. It was then "sold" for $1 to the US government to serve as a home base for the Navy airship USS Macon. The original facilities started to be constructed in July 1931 and was originally named Airbase Sunnyvale CAL. Following the death of Rear Admiral William A. Moffett, who is credited with the airfield's creation, the airfield at NAS Sunnyvale was renamed NAS Moffett Field. In 1958, The National Aeronautics and Space Act was created by Congress, and it was at that time that the Ames Aeronautical Laboratory was designated as a NASA field center. NASA Ames Research Center continued to expand, eventually occupying 500 acres adjacent to the Naval Air Station at Moffett Field. In 1994, after Moffett Field was closed as a military base, NASA Ames acquired stewardship for the Navy property. In conjunction with the nearby communities of Mountain View and Sunnyvale, NASA Ames developed an award-winning re-use plan aimed at transforming part of the former Naval Air Station into a world class R & D center, dedicated to serving the goals of the nation's space program. In 2002, NASA Research Park began collaborating with academia, industry, and non-profit organizations in order to stimulate innovation and education in science and research disciplines focused on space exploration. In 2008, the Ames Research Center leased 42 acres to Google, who then began building a 1.1 million-square-foot office complex overlooking San Francisco Bay five years later. In November 2014, Planetary Ventures LLC, a Google subsidiary, signed a $1.16 billion, 60-year lease that would "save NASA approximately $6.3 million annually in maintenance and operation costs." Google planned to include an additional $200 million to renovate and restore the structure.

Airport location

Located in an unincorporated part of Santa Clara County, California, United States, between northern Mountain View and northern Sunnyvale. 

Airport facts

● Active military families still reside on Moffett Community Housing, and the former military base has several lodges which primarily house academics and students associated with the Ames Research Center. 

● Moffett Field is an active airfield with two active runways:
Runway 14L/32R: 9,197 ' × 200'
Runway 14R/32L: 8,122' × 200' 

● Since the area is often clear, while other parts of the San Francisco Bay are very foggy, this spot proved to be ideal for an airport. The reason for such ideal conditions is that the Coast Range to the west blocks the cold oceanic air that causes San Francisco fog.

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