Breaking New Ground—Stories from Defence Construction Breaking_new_ground - Page 69

In the 1970s, Canadian Forces in Germany were relocated to Baden-Soellingen, among other bases. This view shows the married quarters at the RCAF’s No. 4 (F) Wing. Harald Emmerich noted in his recollections that, in an attempt to formalize the construction working relationships and to establish operational procedures for carrying out the work, the NATO Sending States established a working group to prepare a Construction Administrative Agree- ment whereby designs were prepared, tenders called and contracts awarded and supervised by the Construction Department of the German government. DCL acted as the agency for DND, channelling construction require- ments to the German government. It also carried out inspections and financial control of the contracts, and accepted the completed projects for DND. As before, provisions were made to accommodate projects that could be more advantageously carried out by dealing directly with the German construction industry. BREAKING NEW GROUND DCL in the Black Forest… Germany, 1973—Bill Plumb My first contact with DCL was in 1973 at the train station in Baden-Oos, where I arrived from Dusseldorf as a result of a newspaper ad and a phone conversation with a rather pleasant chap who had suggested I come down for an interview. I was met by a thin man dressed in shorts, (with) a full beard and a friendly grin—this DEFENCE CONSTRUCTION CANADA apparition turned out to be George Moennich. My next impressions were that of large no-smoking signs in George’s car and office (he was way ahead of his time), a base full of ugly NATO-green buildings, and the penetrating screech of Starfighters permeating what was soon to be my office. I wondered whether I had made a serious mistake. I hadn’t. It was the beginning of an enjoyable and rewarding relationship with DCL… One of the most interesting aspects of working with DCL Europe as Branch Manager was my involvement with the Construction Agreement Working Group… When our group finally completed the Implementing Instructions in 1980, all forms used by all seven nations had been designed over a period of five years (!) in our Lahr office. During the next few years, delegations of our counterparts from the UK, the States, Belgium and the Netherlands came down to Lahr to see how we administered construction contracts within the frame- work of the Agreement using our custom-designed computer programs. Bill Plumb replaced George Moennich as Branch Manager in Germany in 1975. 59