Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Living with the military

Posted By on Tue, Sep 29, 2015 at 5:31 PM

A planning process for growth near three area military bases will look at development impacts on everything from water supply to wildfire risk to "electromagnetic spectrum." The cost? Nearly $1 million, with most of that money coming from the Pentagon, according to a regional planning agency news release.

click to enlarge Fort Carson is among three installations included in a study of how the city and county can develop without disrupting the military — and vice versa. - PAM ZUBECK
  • Pam Zubeck
  • Fort Carson is among three installations included in a study of how the city and county can develop without disrupting the military — and vice versa.
The Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments said today it's landed an $800,000 grant from the Department of Defense's Office of Economic Adjustment to manage a two-year land-use study involving local and state governments, as well as the three military installations. Another $100,000 will come from the council's 16 member governments.

The bases included in the study, which will be completed by three planners hired for the project, are the Air Force Academy, Fort Carson and Peterson Air Force Base, the release states.

The goal is to produce a strategic plan "to preserve military readiness and defense capabilities while supporting community economic development and jointly beneficial adjacent land uses."

In other words, the plan will guide development so that it is "compatible" with military training, testing, and operational missions, while finding ways to reduce the military's impact on adjacent land.

“Our community has a history of working cooperatively with our military neighbors,” Manitou Springs Mayor Marc Snyder, who serves as the PPACG board chair, says in the release. “This study will enhance existing relationships and identify additional ways to improve our region’s economy and natural environment through military operations.”

According to the release, the study will cover:
Regional water supply
Regional stormwater management
Compatible alternative-energy development
Wildfire risk
Development near airfield operations
Regional airspace use
Competition for electromagnetic spectrum
GIS data
Formal policies and procedures for military participation and cross-jurisdictional coordination      in community development review and planning processes
An implementation strategy with specific actions and monitoring responsibilities identified by        year

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