Known as the United States Navy’s first submarine base, Naval Submarine Base New London in Groton Connecticut is located along the Thames River, occupying roughly 680 acres. The area is also home to the United States Coast Guard Academy, and there are many historical landmarks and attractions near this coastal city.
Find information about Naval Submarine Base New London including the main commercial and DSN numbers for the base, information on basic services, base transportation, lodging for TDY and PSCing personnel, and inprocessing.
Mission & Units
The official site of Naval Submarine Base New London proclaims the usual mission-related taglines; “…provides support over assigned shore organizations: to provide a Base Operations Support (BOS) infrastructure to the operating forces of the Navy and other naval organizations and tenants,” but the important work done here includes training and deploying submarine crews. The base features 11 submarine piers and hosts around 70 tenant commands.
Important missions and units include:
- Submarine Group 2
- Naval Submarine School
- Naval Submarine Support Center, New London
- Naval Submarine Support Facility, New London
- PCU Mississippi
- USS Alexandria
- USS Annapolis
- USS Dallas
- USS Hartford
- USS Memphis
- USS Miami
- USS Missouri
- USS New Hampshire
- USS Pittsburgh
- USS Providence
- USS San Juan
- USS Springfield
- USS Toledo
- USS Virginia
Naval Submarine Base New London started as a naval yard and storage depot. This heritage begins in 1868. At that time, the state of Connecticut saw fit to donate land to the U.S. Navy. This land, situated along the Thames River, was initially used for “laying up” vessels that were considered inactive.
The facility would close off and on again until after the turn of the century; it was saved from permanent closure in 1912 and by 1915 the base was home to submarines and was officially redesignated as a submarine base in 1916-the Navy’s fist submarine base ever according to the NSB New London official site.
One important feature of submarine training that happens at NSB New London is something called “The Submarine Escape Training Tank” was built around this time and was responsible for training “generations” of submariners.
Around the time of World War Two, NSB New London expanded to 497 acres from a modest 112. But after the war, submarine operations were cut dramatically and according to the NSB New London official site, much of the WWII submarine fleet was “sold for scrap metal during the early 1960s.”
Once the era of nuclear submarines arrived, the base saw important changes including the arrival of the Navy’s first nuclear ballistic submarine. By the 1990s, Submarine Base New London would be home to only attack submarines thanks to technological changes that eliminated the need for forward deployed submarine support.
In modern times, Naval Submarine Base New London is a place where “almost every submariner in today’s Navy” comes to receive submarine training. The base is situated on more than 680 acres, and has over 160 major facilities. It is home to 15 nuclear submarines at the time of this writing.
Main Base Address and Phone
NSB New London
1 Crystal Lake Road
Groton, CT 06349-5093
- DSN 312-694-4489
Important Contact Numbers
- Barracks/Single Service Member Housing (860) 694-3416
- Base Operator (860) 694-3011
- Branch Dental Clinic (860) 694-3738
- Branch Health Clinic (860) 694-4123
- Child Development Center (860) 448-6843
- School Liaison Office (860) 694-3772
- Civilian Personnel Office (860) 694-5015
- Dental Clinics (860) 694-3738
- Emergency 911
- Finance Office (860) 694-3033
- Fleet and Family Support Center (860) 694-3383
- Hospital/Medical Treatment Facility (860) 694-4123
- Housing Office (860) 694-3851
- ID/CAC Card Processing (860) 694-3022
- Information and Referral Services (860) 694-3383
- Legal Services/JAG (860) 694-3741
- Personnel Support Office (860) 694-3046
- School Liaison Office (860) 694-3772
- Suicide Prevention Hotline (180) 027-38255
- Temporary Lodging/Billeting (860) 694-3416
- VA Facilities (860) 694-4696
Groton, Connecticut has much going for it in the way of historical landmarks, art, and culture. Local attractions are heavy on the water-based activities including sailing, boat tours, lobster dinner cruises, and of course many Navy-themed museums including the Submarine Force Museum, tours of the USS Nautilus, and World War Two memorials.
Nearby Bluff Point State Park offers the usual hiking and picnic opportunities, but Central Bark Dog Park and Waterford Beach Park are also worth taking in for family-themed fun.
NSB New London is located within reasonable distances (within a 110 miles or so) of Boston, New York City, and New Jersey.
Inprocessing and Check-In
Inprocessing and check-in requirements for NSB New London will vary depending on the nature of your travel. PCSing military members should ask their gaining unit what to do upon arrival at NSB New London; these requirements may be as simple as reporting to the gaining unit orderly room but ask your sponsor what the preferred procedure is.
Those arriving TDY for training will be given instructions by the schoolhouse and those should be followed to the letter. For any questions or concerns about check in, call the Combined Bachelor Quarters Supervisor for directions and guidance 24 hours a day: 860-694-3416 or DSN 312-694-3416.
Healthcare services on board NSB New London are provided by the Branch Health Clinic, 860-694-4123. There is no inpatient or emergency service offered here but the following services are available during normal duty hours:
- Primary care
- Undersea medicine
- Internal medicine
- Wellness services
- Individual medical readiness
- Physical therapy
- Laboratory services.
TRICARE Prime patients are assigned to a primary care manager and appointments are required for all services except for TRICARE Prime “patient walk-in protocols”.
NSB New London is served by Child Development Centers (CDCs) but unlike some military installations, the CDCs are located off-base. NSB New London CDCs offer care for military dependent children between six weeks and five years of age. The Naval Submarine Base New London is certified by the Department of Defense. CDC operations are regulated by the Navy as well as accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
Waiting lists apply, learn more or sign up by calling 860-448-6838. All CDC operations have regular hours Monday through Friday, and are closed on weekends and all Federal Holidays. Full-time, and hourly child care services are available but hourly care is offered on a space-available basis only.
There is also care available in Child Development Homes, which are certified private residences offered as an alternative “to center-based care and is often preferred by families because of the small group sizes, the home-like atmosphere and the flexible hours of operation that the centers often cannot accommodate” and is open to children six weeks to 12 years of age.
All inbound personnel PCSing to NSB New London are directed to track and manage their household goods shipments using the Defense Personal Property System, but you can also get local assistance via the Inbound TMO office at 860-694-4650 or DSN: 694-4650.
Dependent And Retiree ID Card Renewal, Replacement, New Issue
All ID card services should be scheduled using the NSB New London RAPIDS site. Walk-ins are discouraged and you may request appointments for two ID card services at a time. Dependent ID card services require two forms of unexpired ID and may also require compliance with REAL ID Act regulations.
Those trying to get ID card services in the absence of the service member may need to provide written authorization such as a power of attorney or other documentation acceptable to the DoD.
Mosts school age children of military families assigned to NSB New London will attend school in one of the following districts based on the family’s location/zip code or related factors:
- Groton Public Schools
- Ledyard Public Schools
- New London Public Schools
- Norwich Public Schools
- Waterford Public Schools
- East Lyme Public Schools
- Old Lyme Public Schools
- Montville Public Schools
- Stonington Public Schools
- North Stonington Public Schools
- Preston Public Schools
- Westerly Public Schools
- Chariho Regional School District
These districts are small and are described as being “responsive” to the needs of their small communities. For help selecting a school or learning about individual transfer requirements for each school district, contact the NSB New London School Liaison Officer 860-694-3772.
Government housing aboard NSB New London is privatized and operated by Balfour Beatty Communities. New arrivals are directed to contact the NSB New London Housing Service Center (HSC) for information on signing up for Public-Private Venture (PPV) housing, reserving rooms in the barracks or dorms for unaccompanied military members and those TDY to the base as students.
There are some recommended steps new arrivals must take for best results in getting housing; first and foremost, register as soon as possible using the Housing Early Application Tool; a housing counselor will get in touch to assist you.
The following documents are required for housing:
- Housing Application DD 1746
- Sex Offender Disclosure form
- Courtesy Move Entitlement (CME) form,
- Permanent Change of Station orders
- Record of Emergency Data (NAVPERS 1070/602, DD Form 93 or CG-4107A)
You may fax, email or mail your documentation to the Housing Service Center (HSC) once you receive your orders
New arrivals are required to check in must check in with the HSC within 30 days of the report date on your orders in order to obtain your detachment date as your control date. Failure to go to the HSC within 30 days will seriously delay moving into government housing.
Those who seek housing off-base should check in with the housing office before committing to any legally binding agreement for housing. Single and unaccompanied service members E4 and above “over 4” on both shore and sea duty are authorized to find housing in the local community and be paid BAH.
The NSB New London Official site reminds incoming personnel that there is no housing available on-base for single E5s and above in the barracks.
PCS and TDY Lodging
On-base temporary lodging is available from both Navy Gateway Inns and Suites, and the Navy Lodge. The NSB New London official site reminds inbound sailors that you must check in with Navy Gateway Inns and Suites to receive a certificate of non-availability before you can explore off-base lodging options.
Failure to get a certificate means you cannot be reimbursed for PCS or TDY lodging expenses at an off-base hotel or other commercial facility. For more information, reservations, and more call (860) 694-3416 or DSN 694-3416.
Pet accommodations are very limited-call before you book to learn what options you have depending on PCS season, TDY season, and more. For booking, first priority is offered to Navy and Marine Corps personnel with families arriving or departing on permanent change of station orders.
The nearest major airports to NSB New London are 50 miles away or more. They include:
- Bradley International Airport
- Boston Logan International Airport
- LaGuardia Airport
- John F. Kennedy International Airport
- Newark Liberty International Airport
Depending on the time of arrival the usual ride-sharing and commercial transportation services are available, but given the distances involved from these airports it may be better to discuss arrival and pickup with the sponsor for those PCSing to NSB New London.
Those arriving on TDY orders should check with their gaining unit or schoolhouse to learn what transportation options may be available from the school or gaining unit.
Vehicle Registration And Driver’s License
Vehicle passes are mandatory when entering NSB New London. Those driving privately owned vehicles are required to register at the NSB New London Vehicle Pass Office, Building 500. This facility is located at the Main Gate and to register your vehicle with the base you will need the following:
- Accurate vehicle registration in your name or your spouse’s name.
- Proof of insurance.
- Current drivers’ license from your state or the State of Connecticut.
- Valid, unexpired military ID.
- Minimum liability insurance as required by the state.
- Proof of emissions testing for vehicles 10 years or older.
You may be required to register your privately owned vehicle with the state of Connecticut and get a state drivers’ license depending on how long you are TDY to the base; those who are making permanent change of station moves should contact the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles to learn what the most current registration and licensing requirements are for military members and their families.