Joint Base Lewis-McChord

About

Modern day Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) began as a training encampment in 1902, but was officially named Camp Lewis in 1917 after the famed discoverer Meriwether Lewis (Lewis and Clark Expedition). Camp Lewis evolved into Ft. Lewis in 1927. Later, with WWII looming, the Army Air Corps took over a nearby airfield and renamed it McChord Air Field. In 2010, the two bases were combined as a cost saving measure and the installation is currently known as Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM). Today it is one of the largest and most modern installations in the U.S. and is home to the I Corps, 62nd and 446th Airlift Wings, 7th Infantry Division, 1st Special Forces Group, 75th Ranger Regiment, 66th Theater Aviation Command, and Madigan Army Medical Center (just to name a few).

JBLM is a coveted posting in military circles. Nestled between the Puget Sound and the Cascade Mountains, JBLM is also convenient to the metropolitan hubs of Olympia, Tacoma and Seattle. The views are epic with Mt. Rainier overlooking the area. Big city living, quiet inlet refuges or wide-open prairies are among your options when choosing where to reside. No matter where you choose, you’ll never be too far from everyday needs and even luxury shopping. The coffee scene here is like none other and culture is laid-back, outdoorsy and active.

We should probably take a moment to talk about the weather. It rains here — a lot. The rains start in October and continue, often without reprieve, through the spring. Annual rain totals aren’t really that much higher than the Southeastern U.S., but it’s a constant drizzle that can seem unrelenting versus sporadic deluges. The rainfall does equate to a beautiful, lush, green landscape and heightens one’s appreciation for the sunshine when it does reappear. The summers are mild and there are a plethora of the natural wonders and outdoor recreation opportunities to take advantage of.

Base Services:

JBLM Housing Division

JBLM Housing Division
Location: Building 5128, Pendleton Ave
Joint Base Lewis McChord, WA, 98433
Hours: M-F 0900 to 1500; 4th Tuesday of each month from 0800 to 1200

Lewis McChord Communities (On-Base Housing)

Location: 3209 Maple St. SW
Joint Base Lewis McChord, WA, 98489
M-T, Th-F: 0800 to 1600
W: 0830 to 1600
Sat-Sun: Closed

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Base Location

By Plane
Seattle-Tacoma International (SEA)
60 minutes
By Bus
Bay Bus Ticketing
510 Puyallup Ave.
Tacoma, WA 98402
(253) 383-4621

 

Tacoma Amtrak
1001 Puyallup Ave.
Tacoma, WA 98421
Greyhound Customer Service:
(800) 231-2222
Drive Times
Tacoma, WA – 20 minutes
Olympia, WA – 30 minutes
Seattle, WA – 60 minutes

Local Love

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Commute

Commute times are a serious consideration and vary widely for the area. U.S. Interstate 5 (I-5) runs from Olympia, through JBLM, Tacoma and on to Seattle. This Interstate is the main highway and where most of the gates onto JBLM are located. Congestion is guaranteed during peak hours and jams are frequent. As a general rule of thumb, the less time you can spend on I-5, the better.

JBLM-Main (formerly Ft. Lewis) JBLM North (formerly North Fort) JBLM-McChord Field (formerly McChord AFB) Madigan Army Medical Center
DuPont 10 mins
*15 mins
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20 mins
*35 mins
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Lacey 20 mins
*35 mins
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Olympia 25 mins
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Steilacoom 15 mins
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15 mins
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Puyallup 30 mins
*45 mins
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Yelm 30mins
*45 mins
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*60 mins
35 mins
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Tacoma 25 mins
*40 mins
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15 mins
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Lakewood 15 mins
*35 mins
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