United States Naval Air Station Cubi Point
Republic of the Philippines

Radford Field


Photos of the CB's and their task of building NAS Cubi - Thanks to Dave Budworth for provinding these awsume images of history


Established : July 1956
Disestablished : October 1992

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By far the largest and most impressive project tackled by the Seabees in the 1950s was the construction of Cubi Point Naval Air Station in the Philippines. Civilian contractors, after taking one look at the forbidding Zambales Mountains and the maze of jungle at Cubi Point, claimed it could not be done. Nevertheless, the Seabees proceeded to do it! Begun in 1951 at the height of the Korean War, it took five years and an estimated 20-million man-hours to build this new, major Navy base. At Cubi Point Seabees cut a mountain in half to make way for a nearly two-mile long runway. They blasted coral to fill a section of Subic Bay, filled swampland, moved trees as much as a hundred and fifty feet tall and six to eight feet in diameter, and even relocated a native fishing village. The result was an air station, and an adjacent pier that was capable of docking the Navy's largest carriers. Undoubtedly as important as the finished project, however, was the indispensable leadership and construction experience gained by the postwar generation of Seabees. The construction of Cubi Point Naval Air Station was a mammoth learning experience as well as a superb job well done. The Navy's **Construction Unit Battalion 1 (CUBI), the famous Seabees, start construction of the Naval Air Station. Note:A Seabee named Harley Fender of MCB9, has provided additional information as to the CB Units constructing NAS Cubi - they include MCB 2, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, and 13. All of the 30th Naval Construction Regiment). Mr. Fender did three tours at Subic 1952-53; 1954-55,; and 1956. This is the dream of Chief of Naval Operations Arthur Radford who pictured the air station as the vital link for US operations in the Southwest Pacific...1952 - Radford himself makes the first landing on the Cubi Strip...July 25, 1956 - Naval Air Station completed and named Cubi Point in honor of the Seabee unit. The construction of the 8,000 foot runway involved the flattening of a 1,200 foot mountain and is said to be the equivalent of the digging of the Panama Canal...February 7, 1965 - With the Vietnam war escalating, Subic takes on the task of providing upkeep and maintenance of ships and supplies of food, fuel, and ammunition to sustain the fleet in Western Pacific. Subic also becomes the premier Rest and Recreation destination in the Far East...January 1991 - Iraq invades Kuwait. The Gulf War breaks out. Subic becomes the staging ground for one of the biggest US military operations since the Vietnam War. Subic Bay is used in the Desert Shield and Desert Storm operations...June 1991 - Pinatubu explodes, showering the Subic and Cubi complex with volcanic ash...November 24, 1992 - The last American Ship, helicopter carrier USS Belleau Wood, leaves the naval base, ending 94 years of American military presence in the Philippines

VRC-50 Hangar 8133 at NAS Cubi Pt
A historical note:
a 1944 Army Air Force Aeronautical Approach Chart (735 A IV) that shows Cubi Point was named long before there was any construction.

** Not confirmed as of yet

For some early photos of NAS Cubi -- click HERE

runway 25

runway 25