Military


Detroit Arsenal
Detroit Army Tank Plant (DATP)

Detroit Arsenal, an Army Material Command installation in Warren, Michigan, is the headquarters of the Army's Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command. The primary missions at Detroit Arsenal are industrial production, research, development and engineering. The Detroit Arsenal was established 1940 on 341 acres at Warren, 17 miles northeast of Detroit. It has a staff of 400 mililitary and 5,700 civilians personnel.

In 1940, the U.S. government built a tank arsenal to support the allied war effort in WWII. Tank-automotive management moved to Detroit shortly thereafter. Over the years, both Chrysler and General Dynamics have operated the plant and together produced over 44,000 vehicles. In 1967, the Arsenal was renamed U.S. Army Tank-Automotive Command (TACOM) and gained control over nearly all of the Army's tank-automotive systems. The plant itself closed in the 1990s but the management of TACOM thrives with an ever-expanding mission.

Detroit Arsenal gained automotive material management functions from Aviation Troop Command. Gained Belvoir Research, Development and Engineering Center from Fort Belvoir VA. New TARDEC facility completed. Aviation-Troop Command MO to be dismantled by December 31, 1998. Functions are to move to Redstone Arsenal, Ala; Natick Research, Development, Engineering Center, Mass; Fort Monmouth NJ; Detroit Arsenal Mich.

Detroit Arsenal realigned by closing the Detroit Army Tank Plant and relocation Army missions to the West Side of the Contrail tracks that divide the Detroit Arsenal and the Detroit Army Tank Plant. Realignment to be complete in December 1999. The proposed action is the relocation of personnel and functions from Detroit Army Tank Plant (DATP) on the east of Detroit Arsenal to the west side of Detroit Arsenal. Functions planned for the relocation within Detroit Arsenal would be combined with similar functions already present to achieve maximum efficiency. Due to a shortage of storage facilities to accommodate relocating and continuing functions the Army proposes to construct a 50,000-square-foot high-bay general-purpose warehouse on the west side of Detroit Arsenal. Upon disposal of DATP, Detroit Arsenal will consist of the western portion of the installation, plus Building 7 (research facility) and Building 8 (warehouse) located on the eastern portion.

Detroit Army Tank Plant (DATP)

Detroit Tank Plant, located on Detroit Arsenal, is one of two Army Government-owned, contractor-operated tank production facilities. A second facility is located at Lima, Ohio, (Lima Army Tank Plant). The Detroit plant is not as technologically advanced as the Lima facility and is not configured for the latest tank production. Moreover, retaining the plant as a "rebuild" facility is not practical since Anniston Army Depot is capable of rebuilding and repairing the M1 Tank and its principal components. Accordingly, the Detroit Tank Plant is excess to Army requirements.

This tank arsenal was the first ever built for mass production of American tanks. When World War II erupted in Europe, and Germany began using tanks in its Blitzkrieg offensives, the United States did not have a tank production program. By mid-1940, the U.S. realized it needed an armored force separate from its infantry. In response to this need, the Detroit Tank Arsenal Plant sprang up seemingly overnight in the winter of 1940-'41, on 113 acres of farm land located north of downtown Detroit, in what is now the city of Warren. The mammoth structure measured five city blocks deep and two blocks wide, designed by master industrial architect, Albert Kahn, in the Moderne style.

Owned by the government and run by Chrysler, the plant received its first contract to build 1,000 M3 tanks in 1940. The government accepted the first M3 on April 24, 1941, while the plant was still under construction. The delivery was marked by a festive occasion, broadcast over a nationwide radio hook-up. VIPs and plant workers cheered as the tank fired its guns, smashed telephone poles, and destroyed a mock-up house. The plant also built M4 Sherman tanks, which have a turret mounted 75-mm gun. The plant set an all-time monthly production record by delivering 896 M4s in December 1942. As the war ended, the government suspended tank production.

During World War II, the Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant built a quarter of the 89,568 tanks produced in the U.S. overall. Its production closely matched tank production of either Great Britain or Germany. During the Korean War, the plant was modified to build the new battle tank, the M47 Patton. In all, Chrysler built 3,443 M47 Patton tanks between 1952 and 1954. During the '60s, the plant produced 500 of the superior M60A2 tanks, which had a novel turret mounted on an M60 chassis and featured a 152-mm gun launcher that fired both conventional rounds and a guided missile. In response to the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, the plant was producing a record five tanks per day.

In 1979, the Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant built components for M1 tanks, which were built at the Lima Art Tank Plant, and continued to build M60 tanks. Because the Lima Plant could not keep up the M1 production, the Detroit Tank Arsenal plant also began producing M1s for the army. In 1982, Chrysler sold the plant to General Dynamics, which produced both M60s and M1s until 1987. The plant was closed in 1996, and the government transferred the property to city of Warren, where it is located, for reuse and development.

The 1995 Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC) recommended the realignment of Detroit Arsenal by closing and disposing of the Detroit Army Tank Plant (DATP). The installation was scheduled to close in September 1998. The Army proposes to dispose of approximately 153 acres of property on the east side of the Detroit Arsenal that have historically been used to accomplish the mission of manufacturing and assembly of the main battle tank. The Army declared 147.39 acres surplus to its needs. The larger acreage figure of 153 assumes eventual transfer of Buildings 7 and 8, with a long-term lease-back arrangement with the Army. Building 7 and 8 are presently needed by the Army for continued use.

In August 1996 the Army decided to authorize General Dynamics to move Government-owned plant equipment needed to produce components for the M1A2 tank from the Detroit Army Tank Plant to a General Dynamics-owned plant in Muskegon, Michigan. A January 1997 report by the Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General concluded that the Army had not complied with the Arsenal Act in its evaluation of alternatives for the future manufacture of M1A2 tank gun mounts and other components that were produced by General Dynamics at the Detroit Army Tank Plant. As a result, the Army authorized General Dynamics to move Government-owned plant equipment for the production of M1A2 tank components from the Detroit Army Tank Plant to a General Dynamics-owned plant. Additionally, the Army was performing a cost comparison review for production of M1A2 tank gun mounts that will not maximize potential savings and does not resolve the problem of excess production capacity.

BRAC 2005

In its 2005 BRAC Recommendation, DoD recommended to realign Detroit Arsenal, MI, by relocating the supply contracting function for tires to the Inventory Control Point at Defense Supply Center Columbus, OH, and disestablishing all other supply functions for tires. This recommendation would achieve economies and efficiencies that would enhance the effectiveness of logistics support to forces as they transition to more joint and expeditionary operations. This recommendation would disestablish the wholesale supply, storage, and distribution functions for all tires; packaged petroleum, oils and lubricants; and compressed gases used by the Department of Defense, retaining only the supply contracting function for each commodity. The Department would privatize these functions and would rely on private industry for the performance of supply, storage, and distribution of these commodities. By doing so, the Department could divest itself of inventories and eliminate infrastructure and personnel associated with these functions. This recommendation would result in more responsive supply support to user organizations and would thus add to capabilities of the future force. The recommendation would provide improved support during mobilization and deployment, and the sustainment of forces when deployed worldwide. Privatization would enable the Department to take advantage of the latest technologies, expertise, and business practices, which translates to improved support to customers at less cost. It centralizes management of tires; packaged petroleum, oils, and lubricants; and compressed gases and eliminates unnecessary duplication of functions within the Department. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in the maximum potential job reductions of 49 total jobs (30 direct and 19 indirect) in the Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, MI, Metropolitan Division over the 2006-2011 time period(less than 0.1 percent).

In another recommendation, DoD recommended to realign Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, AL, by relocating the joint robotics program development and acquisition activities to Detroit Arsenal and consolidating them with the Program Executive Office Ground Combat Systems, Program Executive Office Combat Support and Combat Service Support and Tank Automotive Research Development Engineering Center. DoD also recommended to realign the USMC Direct Reporting Program Manager Advanced Amphibious Assault (DRPM AAA) facilities in Woodbridge, VA, by relocating the Ground Forces initiative D&A activities to Detroit Arsenal.

This recommendation would consolidate those USMC and Army facilities that were primarily focused on ground vehicle activities in development and acquisition (D&A) at Detroit Arsenal in Warren, MI, to increase joint activity in ground vehicle development & acquisition. The D&A being consolidated would be centered on manned and unmanned ground vehicle program management. In Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), effectiveness in combat depended heavily on "jointness," or how well the different branches of our military could communicate and coordinate their efforts on the battlefield. This collection of D&A expertise would not only foster a healthy mix of ideas, but would increase the ground vehicle community's ability to develop the kinds of capabilities that could position DoD for the future as well as adapt quickly to new challenges and to unexpected circumstances. The ability to adapt would be critical where surprise and uncertainty would be the defining characteristics of the new threats.

The Joint Center for Ground Vehicle D&A located at Detroit Arsenal would be the Department of Defense's premier facility for ground vehicle D&A. Detroit Arsenal was located in southeastern Michigan where the Research and Development headquarters reside for General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, General Dynamics Land Systems, Toyota-North America, Nissan-North America, Hino, Hyundai, Suzuki, Visteon, Delphi, Johnson Controls, Dana, and many others. The synergies gained from having a critical mass located in southeastern Michigan, and being able to leverage the world's intellectual capital for automotive/ground vehicle Research and Development & Acquisition, would ensure that the Department is prepared to meet the future demands. The end state of this recommendation would be to consolidate Department of Defense expertise in Ground Vehicle D&A activities at Detroit Arsenal. It would promote jointness, enable technical synergy, and position the Department of Defense to exploit a center-of-mass of scientific, technical, and acquisition expertise with the personnel involved in ground vehicle Research, Development & Acquisition that currently resides at Detroit Arsenal.

The total estimated one-time cost to the Department of Defense to implement this recommendation would be $3.8M. The net of all costs and savings to the Department during the implementation period would be a cost of $1.9M. Annual recurring savings to the Department after implementation would be $1.9M with a payback expected in 2 years. The net present value of the costs and savings to the Department over 20 years would be a savings of $17.1M. This recommendation would require spending approximately $0.1M for National Environmental Policy Act documentation at the receiving installation. detroit

In another recommendation, DoD recommended to realign Detroit Arsenal, MI, by relocating Sea Vehicle Development and Acquisition to Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division, Bethesda, MD, and Program Management and Direction of Sea Vehicle Development and Acquisition to Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, DC. This recommendation would position technical sites for jointness through co-location with functions at the receiving locations. It would also increase efficiency by consolidating program management of Sea Vehicle Development and Acquisition (D&A) from three sites to two principal sites. The consolidation and co-location would leverage existing concentration of research, design and development, and acquisition support capabilities residing within the US Navy Headquarters and Warfare Center RD&A infrastructure. Program management for D&A would be at the Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard. In support of joint and transformational initiatives, this recommendation would relocate management and direction of Theater Support Vessels (TSV) and other Sea Vehicle/Watercraft programs for US Army to the Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard. Consolidation of all program management of Sea Vehicle Programs at the Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard would co-locate these functions and align with related program offices supporting Sea Vehicle Weapons and Combat systems, Hull Mechanical and Electrical, C4I integration and related sea vehicle equipment and support functions. This would also place it near the principal technical direction and development agent for sea vehicles located at Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division in Bethesda, MD.

This recommendation would be consistent with the existing partnership collaboration between the USA and the USN on Theater Support Vessels as reflected in a Memorandum of Understanding between the US Army Program Executive Office (PEO) for Combat Support and Combat Service Support (PEO CS & CSS) and the US Navy PEO for Ships Systems. The recommendation would enhance synergy by consolidating Sea Vehicle functions to major sites, preserve healthy competition, leverage existing infrastructure, minimize environmental impact, and effect reasonable homeland security risk dispersal. The recommendation would increase efficiency by making a robust acquisition organization available to all DoD Sea Vehicle and watercraft program requirements and will increase efficiency by reducing overall manpower requirements.

The total estimated one-time cost to the Department of Defense to implement this recommendation would be $1.5M. The net of all costs and savings to the Department during the implementation period would be a cost of $0.1M. Annual recurring savings to the Department after implementation would be $0.2M with a payback expected in 7 years. The net present value of the costs and savings to the Department over 20 years would be a savings of $2.0M. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 57 jobs (36 direct jobs and 21 indirect jobs) over the 2006-2011 period in the Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, MI, Metropolitan Division (less than 0.1 percent).



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