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Military lounge will replace USO at Jacksonville airport

An airport sign pointing active duty military to a USO welcome center.
USO/Dottie White
An airport sign points active duty military to the former USO welcome center.

The airport lounge for traveling U-S military and their families will have a new place to relax at Jacksonville International Airport — even with the USO center shut down.

The Jacksonville Aviation Authority expects to open a military lounge, without the USO, before the end of the year.

With Northeast Florida’s deep ties to the military community, airport authority CEO Mark VanLoh said having a designated lounge area for service men and women is important.

The nonprofit USO shut down its Welcome Center at JAX with little explanation —  just a sign on its front door apologizing “for the inconvenience." 

The new lounge will open in the same spot on the lower level by baggage claim. The airport authority will work with the North Jacksonville Rotary Club, United Way’s Mission United and the Veterans Council of Duval County to provide coordination and volunteers.     

Dan Scanlan is a veteran journalist with almost 40 years as a radio, television and print reporter in the Jacksonville area, as well as years of broadcast work in the Northeast. You can reach Dan at, (904) 607-2770 or on Twitter at @scanlan_dan.