Greater Sandy Run Area (GSRA)
The most recent addition to Camp Lejeune, the Greater Sandy Run Training Area, has added a new level of credence to Camp Lejeune's claim to being the "Home of Marine Expeditionary Forces in Readiness," providing for the training of Marine Air/Ground Task Forces. The acquisition of the Greater Sandy Run Training Area increased Camp Lejeune's size to 153,439 acres.
In 1992, Camp Lejeune acquired the Greater Sandy Run Area, which is located along the western boundary of the Base. During planning and acquisition, a working group supported range development, manpower, equipment, and vehicle support requirements. The staff initiated contracts for natural heritage surveys, wetland delineation, management plans, and cultural resources surveys, including Phase I and Phase II archaeological testing and an architectural buildings inventory. Throughout these efforts, the regulatory requirements necessary for successful range development were completed. For example, plantings for wildlife were established; endangered plant sites were located, marked, and mapped; and archaeological sites eligible for listing were identified.
Given Camp Lejeune's need to expand range construction into the Greater Sandy Run Area, a wetlands mitigation area (called a wetlands mitigation bank) was required to mitigate wetland impacts associated with range development. In-1994, Mr. Peterson initiated a wetland hydrology study during the first phase of bank-development and used groundwater-monitoring wells to determine the presence or absence of wetlands hydrology. The results of this study confirmed that the hydrology had been altered when drainage ditches were constructed by the previous owner. Regulatory agencies agreed with this finding. Currently, the construction of permanent ditch plugs to restore wetland hydrology in the area is almost complete, and a long-range monitoring program is being established to monitor both hydrological and vegetative responses in the area. The fish and wildlife personnel led this effort to conform with regulatory requirements while honoring construction schedules for the new training ranges in the Greater Sandy Run Area.
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