Kansas Army Ammunition Plant
Kansas AAP is a DARCOM installation located in Labette County, KS, 3 miles east of Parson, KS, and 115 miles north of Tulsa, OK. The site initially consisted of 17,321.89 acres. 3,640.93 were declared surplus and assigned to the Farm Credit Administration on 27 July 1945. Of this amount, 3,488.24 acres were disposed. Documents indicated that there were some discrepancies in the number of acres on a few tracts of land. This plus several easements which were terminated on various dates may account for the difference between the amount declared excess and the amount disposed. These actions reduced the acreage of the plant to its current 13,727 acres.
The facility has 13,727 acres and 681 buildings, though another source reports the existence of 691 buildings. In addition, the facility comprises 242 igloos and magazines with a storage capacity of 903,394 sq. ft. Of this, 523,394 sq. ft. are earmarked for explosive ordnance while the remaining 380,000 sq. ft. are for inert ordnance. Only .06 % of this capacity is currently being used by the government, with the contractor accounting for an additional 2.3%.
Also located on the property of the plant were demolition and burning areas. Production lines, demolition areas, and burning areas are all located on DOD property.
In May of 1939, the Secretary of War authorized appropriations for the construction of the Kansas Ordnance Plant. Within the following two years, the Government purchased thousands of acres from local farmers.
The construction of the Kansas Ordnance Plant began in 1941 and was completed during World War II, in 1942. Prior to DOD's acquisition, the entire Kansas Ordnance Area was used for general farm practices including small grain and livestock operations. It was one of the 77 government-owned, contractor-operated facilities producing munitions and armaments for the war effort. It was operated by J-M Service Corporation and produced artillery ammunition. In September 1945, it was placed on standby and operated by the government.
For the next 5 years, the plant primarily received, stored, and issued ammunition and maintained tools and machinery. A number of acres were leased to private concerns, and the plant, in fact, was declared surplus and put up for sale. However, the war in Korea changed that status, and the plant was partially reactivated in 1950. National Gypsum Company became the operating contractor in 1951; by 1954, the plant was fully reactivated, and all production lines were in use. The plant made bombs, artillery ammunition, and component parts, and it reworked 105mm cartridge cases.
After the Korean War, the plant was again placed on standby from 1957 through December 1966, when it was reactivated for the Vietnam War. Day andZimmerman, Inc. began operating the facility in 1970. During the 197Os, the plant was modernized and became more automated. In the 1980s and early 199Os, the plant produced 155mm ICMs, detonators, Antiarmor Cluster Munitions (ACM) bombs, and other munitions.
In December 1960, the plant requested disposition instructions for some ammunition which was found off of the facility but which the Facility Commander accepted from local law enforcement personnel for storage and disposal. One of the items was a 75mm projectile suspected of containing chemical agent (probably blister agent). In March of 1961 the plant was given permission to dispose of this item at their facility. The location where the round was found or the exact location of disposal are unknown, but it is likely that disposal was conducted in one of the facilities disposal areas and there is no evidence that any traces of it remain at the facility and no evidence that any part of the munitions may have migrated to any portion of the Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUD) sites. The only other chemical activities at this facility involved the use of various chemicals as part of the manufacturing process and did not involve chemical warfare materials (CWM).
Currently, the facility is classified as inactive; all but a small area of the plant is closed, and the government plans to sell the facility. Day and Zimmerman, Inc. has been the contractor-operator since 1970. The three areas comprising the Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDS) property, outside the current plant boundaries, are used for farming. Some areas inside the plant boundaries are leased to local farmers and are used for grazing cattle. No evidence of ammunition contamination has been reported on these lands or on the disposed properties.
In its 2005 BRAC Recommendations, DoD recommended to close Kansas Army Ammunition Plant (AAP), KS by relocating Sensor Fuzed Weapon/Cluster Bomb function and Missile warhead production to McAlester AAP, OK; 155MM ICM Artillery and 60MM, 81MM, and 120MM Mortar functions to Milan, TN; 105MM HE, 155MM HE, and Missile Warhead functions to Iowa AAP, IA; and Detonators/relays/delays to Crane Army Ammunition Activity, IN. Capacity and capability for Artillery, Mortars, Missiles, and Pyro/Demo existed at numerous munitions sites. There were 8 sites producing Artillery, 5 producing Mortars, 9 producing Pyro/Demo, and 13 performing Demilitarization. To reduce redundancy and remove excess from the Industrial Base, the closure would allow DoD to create centers of excellence, avoid single point failure, and generate efficiencies.
The total estimated one-time cost to the Department of Defense to implement this recommendation would be $25.2M. The net of all costs and savings to the Department during the implementation period would be a savings of $2.1M. Annual recurring savings to the Department after implementation would be $10.3M with a payback expected within 2 years. The net present value of the costs and savings to the Department over 20 years would be a savings of $101.4M. Economic Impact on Communities: Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 276 jobs (167 direct jobs and 109 indirect jobs) over the period 2006-2011 in the Parsons, KS Micropolitan Statistical Area (1.8 percent). Kansas AAP had domestic and industrial wastewater treatments plants that might require closure. This recommendation would require spending approximately $5.2M for environmental compliance activities. This cost was included in the payback calculation. Kansas reported approximately $33.2M in environmental restoration costs, which DoD would have to pay regardless of whether Kansas installation would be closed, realigned, or remains open.
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