Fort Dix was an early casualty of the first BRAC in 1988, losing the basic-training mission that had introduced generations of soldiers to military life since 1917. But Fort Dix advocates attracted Army Reserve interest in keeping the 31,000-acre post as a training reservation. With the reserve get millions for improvements, Fort Dix actually has grown again to employ 3,000. As many as 15,000 troops train there on weekends, and the post has been a major mobilization point for reserve and National Guard troops since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.
Fort Dix has completed its realignment from an individual training center to a FORSCOM Power Projection Platform for the Northeastern United States under the command and control of the U.S. Army Reserve Command. Primary missions include being a center of excellence for training, mobilizing and deploying Army Reserve and National Guard units, providing regional base operations support to on-post and off-post active and reserve component units of all services, and providing a high-quality community environment, including 848 housing units, for service members and their families. Fort Dix supported more than 1.1 million mandays of training in 1998. A daily average of more than 13,500 persons live or work within the garrison and its tenant organizations. Fort Dix sub-installations include the Charles E. Kelly Support Facility in Oakdale, PA and the Devens Reserve Forces Training Area in Devens, MA.
Fort Dix is located in Pemberton Township, Burlington County, New Jersey. The installation covers 31,110 acres and contains built-up areas (cantonment, hospital, housing, administrative buildings, etc.), training areas, and a test range. Fort Dix's mission is to provide supervision, training, guidance, financial management, administrative and logistical support, and other services and support activities.
With more than 31,065 acres of land in southern New Jersey, Fort Dix can serve a wide variety of units simultaneously. Location also plays a key role in the post's continued importance as a Power Projection Platform. Fort Dix is located in the center of air, road and rail networks. Fort Dix is located about 17 miles southeast of New Jersey's capital, Trenton. Fort Dix shares a fence line with McGuire Air Force Base and the Naval Air Engineering Station in Lakehurst, NJ. With McGuire Air Force Base right next door and top-notch facilities just up the road in Bayonne, Fort Dix has always been an obvious choice for deploying soldiers and equipment to any theater of operations. Location also draws many key customer groups. More than a quarter of the nation's U.S. Army Reserve and National Guard units are stationed within a 200 mile radius of Fort Dix. Modern facilities and rapid check-in, check-out service draw units from as far away as Ohio to train on post.
Fort Dix (originally Camp Dix) is named for Major General John Adams Dix. During his distinguished public career, he was a United States Senator, Secretary of the Treasury, Minister to France and Governor of New York.
Construction began in June 1917, and on July 18 the War Department named the cantonment Camp Dix. During World War I, Camp Dix was a training and staging ground for the 78th, 87th and 34th Divisions, troops headed for battle. Camp Dix grew quickly and became the largest military reservation in the Northeast. Following the armistice, the camp became a demobilization center.
During the period between the wars, Camp Dix was a training facility for active Army, Army Reserve and National Guard units. The Citizens' Military Training Camp conducted summer training under the 1st, 77th, 78th and 99th Infantry Divisions. From 1933-1941, Camp Dix was also a reception, training and discharge center for the Civilian Conservation Corps. On 8 March 1939, Camp Dix became Fort Dix as the installation became a permanent Army post. Fort Dix served as a reception and training center for men inducted under the draft of 1939. Ten divisions and many smaller units trained and staged here before entering the battlefields of World War II. At the end of the war, the reception center became the separation center, returning more than 1.2 million soldiers to civilian life.
On 15 July 1947, Fort Dix became a basic training center and the home of the 9th Infantry Division. In April 1954, the 9th Division was transferred to Europe and the 69th Infantry Division moved onto Fort Dix. The 69th Division's stay was short-lived; it was deactivated on 16 March 1956. On that date, Fort Dix became the United States Army Training Center, Infantry.
Fort Dix expanded rapidly during the Vietnam war. A mock Vietnam village was constructed and soldiers received Vietnam specific training before going overseas. In July 1973, Fort Dix became a part of the newly formed US Army Training and Doctrine Command. In 1988 Fort Dix began to train Air Force Security Police in ground combat skills. Air Base Ground Defense Command trained enlisted, NCO and officer security police to better defend Air Force installations around the world.
In August 1990, Fort Dix began around-the-clock operations deploying troops for Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm. In January 1991, Fort Dix was chosen to train selected Kuwaiti civilians in basic military skills. After a brief course, they boarded planes to take part in the liberation of their country. As a result of Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommendations of 1988, Fort Dix again ended its active Army training mission.
On 1 October 1992, Fort Dix transferred from Training and Doctrine Command to Forces Command, and was made a Reserve Training Base, serving as a Training, Mobilization and Deployment Center. In December 1995, Fort Dix began mobilizing and deploying troops for the Bosnia Peace Missions.
On 1 October 1997, Fort Dix transferred from Forces Command to the United States Army Reserve Command.
The New Jersey guard began moving more of its equipment home from Fort Drum several years ago to save training costs and take advantage of more available space at Fort Dix. The 31,000-acre military reservation in the Pinelands was formerly an Army basic-training center, until the first round of base closings in 1988 consolidated training at other bases. Now controlled by the Army Reserve, Fort Dix can serve up to 15,000 guard and reserve soldiers at a time during training sessions.
Secretary of Defense Recommendations: Realign Pitt USARC, Coraopolis, PA, by disestablishing the HQ 99th Regional Readiness Command and establishing a Northeast Regional Readiness Command Headquarters at Fort Dix, NJ. Close Camp Kilmer, NJ, and relocate the HQ 78th Division at Fort Dix, NJ. Realign Fort Totten, NY, by disestablishing the HQ 77th Regional Readiness Command and establishing a Sustainment Brigade at Fort Dix, NJ. Realign Fort Sheridan, IL, by relocating the 244th Aviation Brigade to Fort Dix, NJ. Realign Fort Dix, NJ, by relocating Equipment Concentration Site 27 to the New Jersey Army National Guard Mobilization and Training Equipment Site joint facility at Lakehurst, NJ. Close Charles Kelly Support Center and relocate units to Pitt US Army Reserve Center, Coraopolis, PA. Close Carpenter USARC, Poughkeepsie, NY, close McDonald USARC, Jamaica, NY, close Fort Tilden USARC, Far Rockaway, NY, close Muller USARC, Bronx, NY, and relocate units to a new Armed Forces Reserve Center at Fort Totten, NY. Close the United States Army Reserve Center on Fort Hamilton, NY and relocate the New York Recruiting Battalion Headquarters and Army Reserve units into a new Armed Forces Reserve Center on Fort Hamilton, NY. The new AFRC shall have the capacity to accommodate units from the NYARNG 47th Regiment Marcy Armory, Brooklyn and the Brooklyn Bedford Armory/OMS, Brooklyn, NY, if the state decides to relocate those National Guard units.
DoD also recommended to close Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove, PA. As a result, would relocate Co A/228th Aviation and Reserve Intelligence Area 16 from Willow Grove to Fort Dix. This recommendation would reduce excess capacity while creating new joint opportunities in the Fort Dix. Environmentally, Fort Dix was in Severe Non-attainment for Ozone (1-Hour and 8-Hour) and an Air Conformity analysis would be required. There would also be potential impacts to cultural, archeological, tribal resources.
In another recommendation, DoD would realign Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, Washington Navy Yard, DC, and Naval Submarine Base New London, CT, by relocating all mobilization functions to Fort Dix, NJ, designating it as Joint Pre-Deployment/Mobilization Site Dix/McGuire/Lakehurst. This recommendation was part of a larger recommendation to consolidate mobilization funcitons at several other sites. This recommendation would realign eight lower threshold mobilization sites to four existing large capacity sites and transforms them into Joint Pre-Deployment/ Mobilization Platforms. This action would be expected to have the long-term effect of creating pre- deployment/mobilization centers of excellence, leverage economies of scale, reduce costs, and improve service to mobilized service members. These joint platforms would not effect any of the services units that a have specific unit personnel/equipment requirements necessitating their mobilization from a specified installation. This recommendation specifically targeted four of the larger capacity mobilization centers located in higher density Reserve Component (RC) personnel areas. These platforms had the added military value of strategic location, Power Projection Platform (PPP) and deployment capabilities. The gaining bases all had an adjoining installation from another service(s), thereby gaining the opportunity to increase partnership and enhance existing joint service facilities and capabilities. These new joint regional predeployment/redeployment mobilization processing sites, Fort Dix, Fort Lewis, Fort Bliss and Fort Bragg had the capability to adequately prepare, train and deploy members from all services while reducing overall mobilization processing site manpower and facilities requirements. Numerous other intangible savings would be expected to result from transformation opportunities by consolidating all services' mobilization operations and optimizing existing and future personnel requirements. Additional opportunities for savings would also be expecte from the establishment of a single space mobilization site capable of supporting pre-deployment/mobilization operations from centralized facilities and infrastructure.
In another recommendation, DoD would realign Fort Dix, NJ, and Naval Air Engineering Station Lakehurst, NJ, by relocating the installation management functions to McGuire AFB, NJ, establishing Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst.
All installations employed military, civilian, and contractor personnel to perform common functions in support of installation facilities and personnel. All installations executed these functions using similar or near similar processes. Because these installations shared a common boundary with minimal distance between the major facilities or are in near proximity, there was significant opportunity to reduce duplication of efforts with resulting reduction of overall manpower and facilities requirements capable of generating savings, which would be realized by paring unnecessary management personnel and achieving greater efficiencies through economies of scale. Intangible savings would be expected to result from opportunities to consolidate and optimize existing and future service contract requirements. Additional opportunities for savings would also be expected to result from establishment of a single space management authority capable of generating greater overall utilization of facilities and infrastructure. Further savings would be expected to result from opportunities to reduce and correctly size both owned and contracted commercial fleets of base support vehicles and equipment consistent with the size of the combined facilities and supported populations. Regional efficiencies achieved as a result of Service regionalization of installation management would provide additional opportunities for overall savings as the designated installations are consolidated under regional management structures.
McGuire's quantitative military value compared to the Fort Dix quantitative military value score was too close to be the sole factor for determining the receiving installation for installation management functions. Military judgment favored McGuire AFB as the receiving installation for the installation management functions because of its mission in support of operational forces compared to Fort Dix, which had a primary mission of support for Reserve Component training. As an installation accustomed to supporting operational forces, it was the military judgment of the JCSG that McGuire would be better able to perform those functions for both locations. Assuming no economic recovery, this recommendation could result in a maximum potential reduction of 285 jobs (173 direct jobs and 112 indirect jobs) over the 2006-2011 period in the Edison, NJ Metropolitan Division (less than 0.1 percent).
Secretary of Defense Justifications: This recommendation transforms Reserve Component facilities and command and control structure throughout the Northeast Region of the United States. The implementation of this recommendation will enhance military value, improve homeland defense capability, greatly improve training and deployment capability, create significant efficiencies and cost savings, and is consistent with the Army's force structure plans and Army transformational objectives.
This recommendation is the result of a nation-wide analysis of Reserve Component installations and facilities conducted by a team of functional experts from Headquarters, Department of the Army, the Office of the State Adjutant General, and the Army Reserve Regional Readiness Command.
This recommendation transforms Army Reserve command and control by consolidating four major headquarters onto Fort Dix, NJ; this recommendation supports the Army Reserve's nationwide Command and Control restructuring initiative to reduce Regional Readiness Commands from ten to four. The realignment of Pitt USARC, Coraopolis, PA, by the disestablishment of the 99th Regional Readiness Command allows for the establishment of the Northeast Regional Readiness Command Headquarters at Fort Dix, NJ, which will further support the re-engineering and streamlining of the Command and Control structure of the Army Reserves throughout the United States. This restructuring will allow for the closure of Camp Kilmer, NJ, and the relocation of the HQ 78th Division to Fort Dix and establishment of one of the new Army Reserve Sustainment Units of Action, which establishes a new capability for the Army Reserve while increasing the support capabilities of the Army Reserve to the Active Army. To further support restructuring; the realignment of Fort Totten and the disestablishment of the HQ 77th RRC will enable the establishment of a Maneuver Enhancement Brigade at Fort Dix, resulting in a new operational capability for the Army Reserve. The realignment of Fort Sheridan, IL, by relocating the 244th Aviation Brigade to Fort Dix coupled with the Department of the Navy recommendation to close NAS Willow Grove, PA, and relocate Co A/228th Aviation to Fort Dix consolidates Army aviation assets in one location. Other actions supporting restructuring include realigning maintenance functions on Fort Dix, the closure of Charles Kelly Support Center, PA, and relocation of multiple subordinate units to Pitt USARC, PA; and the closure of five US Army Reserve Centers in the greater New York City area with relocation of those units to Fort Totten. These actions will significantly enhance training, mobilization, equipment readiness and deployment.
This recommendation reduces military manpower and associated costs for maintaining existing facilities by closing one Camp, five Army Reserve Centers, realigning five facilities and relocating forces to multiple installations throughout the Northeast Region of the United States. These actions will also improve business processes. The implementation of this recommendation and creation of these new command structures will enhance military value, improve homeland defense capability, greatly improve training and deployment capability, create significant efficiencies and cost savings, and is consistent with the Army's force structure plans and Army transformational objectives. The Department understands that the State of New York will close NYARNG Armories: 47th Regiment Marcy Armory, Brooklyn and Brooklyn Bedford Armory/OMS 12. The Armed Forces Reserve Centers will have the capability to accommodate these units if the state decides to relocate the units from these closed facilities into a new AFRC on Fort Hamilton, NY.
This recommendation provides the opportunity for other Local, State, or Federal organizations to partner with the Reserve Components to enhance homeland security and homeland defense at a reduced cost to those agencies.
This recommendation considered feasible locations within the demographic and geographic areas of the closing facilities and affected units. The sites selected were determined as the best locations because they optimize the Reserve Components' ability to recruit and retain Reserve Component soldiers and to train and mobilize units affected by this recommendation.
Although not captured in the COBRA analysis, this recommendation avoids an estimated $168.3M in mission facility renovation costs and procurement avoidance associated with meeting Anti Terror / Force Protection construction standards and altering existing facilities to meet unit training and communication requirements. Consideration of these avoided costs would reduce costs and increase the net savings to the Department of Defense in the 6-year BRAC implementation period, and in the 20-year period used to calculate NPV.
Community Concerns: Community representatives from the area near the Kelly Support Center, in Pittsburgh, PA, expressed concerns about the base's Commissary and Exchange facilities. The next nearest comparable facilities are 188 miles away in Carlisle, PA. The community stated that 69,000 active and reserve military personnel, as well as retirees, are supported by these facilities. All other activities on the post will be moved to the nearby 99th RRC Reserve Center, but DoD has not indicated a plan to place the Commissary and Exchange facilities at nearby sites.
Commission Findings: The Commission found DoD's recommendation consistent with the final selection criteria and the Force Structure Plan. Community concerns were carefully weighed and considered, but the Commission did not find they rose to the level of substantial deviation. The Commission also notes that DoD will address the further requirements for the commissary and exchange at the Kelly Support Center after the BRAC recommendations are approved and the effects on the area population can be assessed.
Commission Recommendations: The Commission found the Secretary's recommendation consistent with the final selection criteria and force structure plan. Therefore, the Commission approved the recommendation of the Secretary.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|