Skip to main content

Ghost Town Tuesday; McCoy Air Force Base

Back in 2015 I explored the ruins of McCoy Air Force Base which was located on the west runway of Orlando International Airport in the City of Orlando.






McCoy Air Force Base on the western runway of Orlando International Airport in an area known now as the Orlando Tradeport.  McCoy AFB was originally constructed in 1940 as a civilian replacement airport for the Orlando Municipal Airport which was converted to Orlando Army Airfield.  By 1942 the new airport was leased to the Army and was renamed Orlando Army Airfield #2.  In 1943 the name would change to Pinecastle Army Airfield after a community just to the north on Conway Road.

Pinecastle Army Airfield would operate through the end of World War II and was handed back over to the City of Orlando in 1947 with a reversal clause.  The reversal clause allowed the Army to reestablish Pinecastle Army Airfield in 1951.  By 1952 the modern 12,000 foot runways still in use at Orlando International Airport were built.  By 1958 the base was renamed to McCoy Air Force base, the name came from a pilot that crashed a B-47 north of the runways in 1957.  By 1964 commercial airlines began to use the runways at McCoy Air Force Base in favor of the much smaller Hendron Airport which was once the Orlando Army Airfield.  By 1968 all commercial air traffic had been moved to McCoy Air Force Base.

In 1973 McCoy Air Force Base was ordered to close and Air Force Operations ended in 1975 with the runways being turned over to the City of Orlando.  McCoy Air Force Base became the McCoy Annex of Naval Training Center Orlando which shuttered in 1999.  The Orlando Tradeport largely was built upon the unused McCoy Annex and Hurricanes in the 2000s gradually chipped away at the structures that remained.  Interestingly Orlando International Airport still has a designation of "MCO" which is from the days when it was McCoy Air Force Base.

The most obvious ruin from McCoy Air Force Base is the abandoned CSX Taft-McCoy Spur line.  The former military base has all sorts of railroad traffics laying around unused approaching the west runway from Taft.











Not much is left from the previous military structures as most were damaged and razed following Hurricane Charley in 2004.  There are various parking lots still accessible next to largely empty streets, some older Google Car images still pick up the buildings.









Comments

Unknown said…
The 2 large hangars are from when MCO was an Air force base....also at the Boggy Creek end of Tradeport dr.storage bunkers let from airforce can still be seen.
Tom said…
I was stationed at McCoy AFB from November 1965 until June 1968, during which I also had tdy assignments and then I shipped over to Korea for the next two years. I returned to Orlando 9 years later with my family on vacation and I could barely recognize Orlando since Disney World changed so much in the area. I would say it spoiled what was a perfect little town.
Albert B said…
Lived on Mccoy AFB 1964-1965 as a 14 year old dependent. Pop was in Air Force. Learned to play golf at the base golf course.Caddied for a one armed golfer who was a Professional at that course.
Anonymous said…
I live in the back great sound today. I'm amazed at the beauty of our neighborhood. I am extremely sad that they are allowing warehouses and possibly apartments. We have to enjoy it for now because it will never be the same.

Popular posts from this blog

Route 75 Tunnel - Ironton, Ohio

In the Ohio River community of Ironton, Ohio, there is a former road tunnel that has a haunted legend to it. This tunnel was formerly numbered OH 75 (hence the name Route 75 Tunnel), which was renumbered as OH 93 due to I-75 being built in the state. Built in 1866, it is 165 feet long and once served as the northern entrance into Ironton, originally for horses and buggies and later for cars. As the tunnel predated the motor vehicle era, it was too narrow for cars to be traveling in both directions. But once US 52 was built in the area, OH 93 was realigned to go around the tunnel instead of through the tunnel, so the tunnel was closed to traffic in 1960. The legend of the haunted tunnel states that since there were so many accidents that took place inside the tunnel's narrow walls, the tunnel was cursed. The haunted legend states that there was an accident between a tanker truck and a school bus coming home after a high school football game on a cold, foggy Halloween night in 1

US Route 299 and modern California State Route 299

US Route 299 connected US Route 101 near Arcata of Humboldt County east across the northern mountain ranges of California to US Route 395 in Alturas of Modoc County.  US Route 299 was the longest child route of US Route 99 and is the only major east/west highway across the northern counties of California.  US Route 299 was conceptualized as the earliest iteration of what is known as the Winnemucca-to-the-Sea Highway.  The legacy of US Route 299 lives on today in the form of the 307 mile long California State Route 299.   Featured as the cover of this blog is the interchange of US Route 101 and US Route 299 north of Arcata which was completed as a segment of the Burns Freeway during 1956.   Part 1; the history of US Route 299 and California State Route 299 The development of the State Highways which comprised US Route 299 ("US 299") and later California State Route 299 ("CA 299") began with 1903 Legislative Chapter 366 which defined the general corridor of the Trinit

Former California State Route 190 at the bottom of Lake Success

East of the City of Porterville the alignment of California State Route 190 follows the Tule River watershed into the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  In modern times California State Route 190 east of Porterville climbs south of the Lake Success Reservoir towards Springville.  Much of the original alignment of California State Route 190 within the Lake Success Reservoir can still be hiked, especially in drier years.  Pictured above is the original alignment of California State Route 190 facing northward along the western shore of Lake Success.  Part 1; the history of California State Route 190 through Lake Success The corridor of California State Route 190 ("CA 190") east of Porterville to Springville follows the watershed of the Tule River.  The Tule River watershed between Porterville and Springville would emerge as a source of magnesite ore near the turn of the 20th Century.  The magnesite ore boom would lead to the development of a modern highway in the Porterville-Springville