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Old 01-30-2012, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
6,238 posts, read 3,444,151 times
Reputation: 7422
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
I think this is the bigger issue especially for Colorado Springs where their economy is based on the military and military related companies. If the cut backs come in the next 20 years that Washing is talking about you could see one or two bases closed and that would cause a economic collapse much worse then Pueblo saw in the 80's when the steel industry nearly shut down.
I don't think this will be the case. Colorado Springs is not in jeopardy of losing a base, simply one of its bases may lose some troops and may not get their shiny new maneuver site expansion project in the southeast corner of the state.

The way these drawdowns work is that the services will target smaller numbers of accessions and will mark some billets as expendable, meaning they will not replace outgoing troops in some cases. All of this is to avoid a shock to the system and keep manpower and end strength numbers stable. Remember, even in a phase of drawing down the military's size, there are mission requirements to meet. So even if Fort Carson loses troops, it will occur over time and its impact on the local economy will likely be negligible.

Now the Army will be consolidating some of its command structure, and the possibility does exist that Fort Carson will lose some of its troops as part of this consolidation effort. But it is JUST as likely that they will gain numbers if the base is targeted to be on the receiving end of consolidation efforts. In fact, given the construction investments in housing, barracks, and command/control facilities on the base in the past 10 years, I would suggest that this is the more likely scenario.

Still, even if Fort Carson gains troops in this period, I do not think that the efforts to expand the Pinon Canyon site will be successful. It's hard to justify expanding a new facility when we are downsizing.

 
Old 01-30-2012, 06:13 PM
 
815 posts, read 583,490 times
Reputation: 735
We went on vacation to CO last year and drove by Ft. Carson. I was surprised at how well it blended in with the landscape. There are a lot of rolling hills in that area that block the view of most of the improvements.

Let's face it, it's a rural area without a lot of population and that's the place most likely to have the least amount of impact. I'm not saying that there isn't beauty in that sort of area, but certainly very few people have chosen to populate that part of the state.
 
Old 01-30-2012, 06:15 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
15,909 posts, read 11,371,175 times
Reputation: 7670
NIMBY Anyone?
 
Old 01-30-2012, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
6,238 posts, read 3,444,151 times
Reputation: 7422
Quote:
Originally Posted by yousah View Post
We went on vacation to CO last year and drove by Ft. Carson. I was surprised at how well it blended in with the landscape. There are a lot of rolling hills in that area that block the view of most of the improvements.

Let's face it, it's a rural area without a lot of population and that's the place most likely to have the least amount of impact. I'm not saying that there isn't beauty in that sort of area, but certainly very few people have chosen to populate that part of the state.
Large military bases are often some of the best preserved landscape you will find. This is because they are all federal preserves. I was stationed at Camp Pendleton, CA a couple years ago and the environmental regulations there are strict. Our radios use lithium powered batteries, and if a unit loses a piece of ordnance (such as a crate of hand grenades) out in the field, and investigation ensues when people return from the field. If they lose one of those lithium batteries, the unit does not return from the field until it is found. I'm sure that it is very similar at Fort Carson. There are big swaths of land on these bases that literally goes untouched by humans for years at a stretch.
 
Old 01-30-2012, 06:25 PM
Status: "Pueblo Canon City CSA 208,000. The 134th largest in the USA!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
9,820 posts, read 10,390,610 times
Reputation: 2959
Quote:
Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
I don't think this will be the case. Colorado Springs is not in jeopardy of losing a base, simply one of its bases may lose some troops and may not get their shiny new maneuver site expansion project in the southeast corner of the state.

The way these drawdowns work is that the services will target smaller numbers of accessions and will mark some billets as expendable, meaning they will not replace outgoing troops in some cases. All of this is to avoid a shock to the system and keep manpower and end strength numbers stable. Remember, even in a phase of drawing down the military's size, there are mission requirements to meet. So even if Fort Carson loses troops, it will occur over time and its impact on the local economy will likely be negligible.

Now the Army will be consolidating some of its command structure, and the possibility does exist that Fort Carson will lose some of its troops as part of this consolidation effort. But it is JUST as likely that they will gain numbers if the base is targeted to be on the receiving end of consolidation efforts. In fact, given the construction investments in housing, barracks, and command/control facilities on the base in the past 10 years, I would suggest that this is the more likely scenario.

Still, even if Fort Carson gains troops in this period, I do not think that the efforts to expand the Pinon Canyon site will be successful. It's hard to justify expanding a new facility when we are downsizing.
I actually think they will not need as many bases as they currently have in Colorado Springs especially as computers become more advanced. I could get into my reasoning but that is really outside the scope of this thread but I honestly think Colorado Springs will be looking for a new identity possibly as soon as 20 years (the early 2030's) and that is not a long way away.
 
Old 01-30-2012, 06:41 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
6,238 posts, read 3,444,151 times
Reputation: 7422
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
I actually think they will not need as many bases as they currently have in Colorado Springs especially as computers become more advanced. I could get into my reasoning but that is really outside the scope of this thread but I honestly think Colorado Springs will be looking for a new identity possibly as soon as 20 years (the early 2030's) and that is not a long way away.
Well, so far NORAD has moved its C2 from the bunkers in Cheyenne Mountain to Peterson AFB. The facility is considered obsolete, though it is still maintained. The personnel are all still in town, and this is the closest the city has come to one of its facilities being shut down.

Meanwhile the Air Force Academy is not going anywhere.

Now obviously none of this (other than the Air Force Academy) can be written in stone. But I don't think that the military's presence in Colorado Springs is going to be vastly different in 20 years than it is today.

Fort Carson is just as likely to benefit from this phase of downsizing as it is to lose troops. It just depends on how the Army determines the optimal locations for consolidated troop levels. Fort Carson has been a hot bed for Army construction efforts and rather pivotal to recent Army doctrine, so I do not anticipate the place becoming a target for losing too many troops, if any at all.

As for Peterson and Schriever, I'm not sure how they fit into the Air Force's long term operational/strategic plans, but I do know the Air Force has already reached its goals in terms of reducing its own manpower numbers. Both of these facilities are already stabilized and likely will be for the foreseeable future.

There is a wild card in play though, and that is what started this discussion in the first place. If the Pinyon Canyon expansion is approved, the Fort Carson-Pinyon Canyon training areas would be the largest military facility in the U.S. It would likely result in the Army bulking up personnel numbers at Fort Carson to save on transit costs in/out of the maneuver site. The question is, if the expansion is not approved, will Fort Carson's role in Army doctrine suffer? That's a tough one to answer.
 
Old 01-30-2012, 08:25 PM
Status: "Pueblo Canon City CSA 208,000. The 134th largest in the USA!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
9,820 posts, read 10,390,610 times
Reputation: 2959
Quote:
Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
Well, so far NORAD has moved its C2 from the bunkers in Cheyenne Mountain to Peterson AFB. The facility is considered obsolete, though it is still maintained. The personnel are all still in town, and this is the closest the city has come to one of its facilities being shut down.

Meanwhile the Air Force Academy is not going anywhere.

Now obviously none of this (other than the Air Force Academy) can be written in stone. But I don't think that the military's presence in Colorado Springs is going to be vastly different in 20 years than it is today.

Fort Carson is just as likely to benefit from this phase of downsizing as it is to lose troops. It just depends on how the Army determines the optimal locations for consolidated troop levels. Fort Carson has been a hot bed for Army construction efforts and rather pivotal to recent Army doctrine, so I do not anticipate the place becoming a target for losing too many troops, if any at all.

As for Peterson and Schriever, I'm not sure how they fit into the Air Force's long term operational/strategic plans, but I do know the Air Force has already reached its goals in terms of reducing its own manpower numbers. Both of these facilities are already stabilized and likely will be for the foreseeable future.

There is a wild card in play though, and that is what started this discussion in the first place. If the Pinyon Canyon expansion is approved, the Fort Carson-Pinyon Canyon training areas would be the largest military facility in the U.S. It would likely result in the Army bulking up personnel numbers at Fort Carson to save on transit costs in/out of the maneuver site. The question is, if the expansion is not approved, will Fort Carson's role in Army doctrine suffer? That's a tough one to answer.
I am not so certain. Look we all know I have a anti Springs bias but lets set that aside for the moment. The way the world is changing with the advancement of technology and the way we fight wars I just don't think there will be a need for as many military bases as we have now. I believe Colorado Springs has 5 military bases (I am including the academy even though technically its not a base) and I could see them cutting them down by at least 2. Which ones will it be? I am not sure and I could make a guess but it would be just that a guess but no matter what bases gets closed with how their economy is so based on the military it will have a impact much worse then anyone can predict. That is why I have been a advocate of the Springs diversifying their economy but they have not done that and unless they do they could have a rough time of it much like Pueblo did in the 80's but worse as most people there are not from the Springs and would not stay and weather out the storm.

EDIT: I just want to add that normally I am the poster who looks at things with a optimistic point of view but no matter how I look at this topic I can't see any other outcome.
 
Old 01-30-2012, 08:55 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
6,238 posts, read 3,444,151 times
Reputation: 7422
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
I am not so certain.
Well if we are talking a period of 20 years, nobody can be certain. I can only give an educated guess though. And I do mean "educated" guess. Right now I am finishing my Master's degree in Manpower Systems Analysis at the Naval Postgraduate School. I base my guesses of off recent history within the area, developing Army doctrine, and my knowledge of how the military applies manpower changes, either adding troops or subtracting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
Look we all know I have a anti Springs bias but lets set that aside for the moment. The way the world is changing with the advancement of technology and the way we fight wars I just don't think there will be a need for as many military bases as we have now. I believe Colorado Springs has 5 military bases (I am including the academy even though technically its not a base) and I could see them cutting them down by at least 2.
No, it is not your anti-Springs bias. Technology does change the military. But you can't just see changes then look at a map and say "oh they'll close one of these bases because they are just down the street from each other" without a knowledge of that branch's doctrine or the mission/role executed by the base(s) in question. Fort Carson, Peterson AFB, and Schriever are all WILDLY different bases with wildly different missions. Closing one depends on if that bases mission can be executed more efficiently or effectively from a different location.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
Which ones will it be? I am not sure and I could make a guess but it would be just that a guess but no matter what bases gets closed with how their economy is so based on the military it will have a impact much worse then anyone can predict.
It would depend on which one was closed and what would happen with the space vacated. I imagine Fort Carson would have the most adverse impact if it were closed. Peterson next, then Schriever. If Schriever closed I doubt that it would have a significant impact on the local economy, as it is a very small base.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
That is why I have been a advocate of the Springs diversifying their economy but they have not done that and unless they do they could have a rough time of it much like Pueblo did in the 80's but worse as most people there are not from the Springs and would not stay and weather out the storm.
Completely unsubstantiated. Now obviously those directly associated with the base (troops/families/civilian employees) would be relocated to other facilities, so they would leave on orders funded by the government. Troops slated to EAS may be given the option to exit the service early and remain in the area. This is fairly common when a base closes because the government would rather not pay to relocate troops who are planning on getting out soon. As for those not associated with the bases, it is anyone's guess as to how they would respond. Many would stay as it is their best economic option. To say "most" would leave is a hopeful statement at best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
EDIT: I just want to add that normally I am the poster who looks at things with a optimistic point of view but no matter how I look at this topic I can't see any other outcome.
THIS is your anit-Springs bias.
 
Old 01-31-2012, 01:15 AM
 
15,580 posts, read 9,302,328 times
Reputation: 8558
Quote:
Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
So even if Fort Carson loses troops, it will occur over time and its impact on the local economy will likely be negligible.
I work in the Mannheim military community which is experiencing a huge drawdown presently, and I assure you the impact is not negligible. Local businesses (and landlords) are really feeling the loss. Granted, COS won't likely face a total withdrawal, but the presence of lot's of military/government people with money in there pockets makes a big difference in the local economy.
 
Old 01-31-2012, 08:15 AM
 
25 posts, read 47,046 times
Reputation: 12
Admittedly this comment is based on old info and it may not still be the same, but i was stationed at Carson in the early 90's and spent a lot of time at pinyon canyon. At the time, any time it rained or snowed, war games were stopped and you had to stay at whatever location you were currently in. If memory serves this was due to some dinosaur tracks in the area. We wasted a lot of time sitting around and playing cards while the muddy roads dried up. If this is still the policy i dont see any good reason to expand.
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