NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Times Square Recruiting Station has a new look just in time for Veterans Day weekend.
The center reopened Friday after renovations.
U.S. Air Force Recruiting Service Commander Maj. Gen. Garrett Harencak swore in new recruits and presided over the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new state-of-the-art facility.
“We thought it was important since this is the most famous recruiting station in all the nation, that it be updated,” Harencak said. “It’s got special security features, but more importantly it now fits in with Times Square.”
The general pointed to the new LED screens and conceded that a number of security cameras have been added due to a 2008 bombing that has never been solved.
The ceremonial reopening also acted as a homecoming for Harencak.
“I left Elmwood Park, New Jersey just seven miles from here on June 21, 1979 and joined America’s Air Force. And everything good and great in my life happened because of that. That is my story,” he said. “Service in America’s military will positively change your life for the better.”
The facility has stood at the Crossroads of the World for 70 years and is the busiest walk-in recruitment center in America.
“Through its doors have passed thousands and thousands of young men and women that have answered our nation’s call and now they proudly call themselves veterans,” Harencak said. “I ask the youth of this great city come join us. We need you.”
The building, which was the nation’s first joint armed forces recruiting station, received a $2 million upgrade.