FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. – Post leaders took stock of Fort Campbell’s past, present and future during the annual Installation Planning Board, or IPB, hosted May 4 at McAuliffe Hall, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) headquarters.
Major General JP McGee, commanding general, 101st Abn. Div. and Fort Campbell, co-chaired the meeting with Brenda Lee McCullough, director, U.S. Army Installation Management Command Directorate-Readiness (ID-R), who visited the installation May 3-6.
McGee took command March 5, and the IPB was his first deep look into the post’s funding and infrastructure needs. The IPB also serves as a capstone event that provides a common operating picture of installation capabilities and tenant requirements.
“Every time I come to Fort Campbell it’s a good IPB, and the reason it’s good is because the commanders are directly involved and it’s not delegated down to lower levels,” McCullough said. “From a garrison perspective, I frequently refer to Fort Campbell as an example of how we’re doing things right.”
McCullough works as a direct liaison between the 20 active and reserve component Army installations and joint bases she represents and the IMCOM commander, Lt. Gen. Douglas Gabram. A major part of her job is attending IPBs and communicating the information to IMCOM.
Fort Campbell’s IPB includes three major components: The Integrated Priority List, or IPL, the senior commander’s infrastructure priorities and the Facility Investment Plan, or FIP. Together, they outline the goals for the installation and plans for achieving them.
“This is the culmination of a year’s worth of effort on the installation side and an update on where we are, but also planning out the next year of things,” said Col. Jeremy D. Bell, Fort Campbell garrison commander. “Our mindset, as a community and as an installation, is that we have to sustain what we have at its current level and make some improvements where we can.”
Housing, barracks and Soldier training facilities are among the key areas Fort Campbell plans to invest in, with several projects scheduled over the next 10 years.
“We were able to successfully advocate for an $87.4 million investment that we’re working on now for our junior NCO privatized housing,” said Jessica Stonesifer, interim deputy garrison commander. “Lendlease, our housing partner, made the decision to invest an additional $235 million dollars toward more of our community housing. That’s a real success.”
The initial $87.4 million investment includes funding for the 144-unit Erevia Park community, major renovations to 170 homes in the New Hammond Heights community and demolition of 250 outdated homes in LaPointe Village. The additional $235 million is expected to add hundreds of new, renovated and demolished homes to that total over the next five years.
“We need to also have an eye on how we can round out our brigades and where they are,” said Brig. Gen. Clair Gill, deputy commanding general-support, 101st Abn. Div. “Not only modernizing [the barracks] but making sure we have enough so the brigades aren’t spread all over post.”
Twenty-two major barracks renovations are recommended through fiscal year 2031 under the FIP for a combined $178.3 million, along with plans to construct a new $46 million barracks for 1st Brigade Combat Team.
Based on input from the Real Property Planning Board, or RPPB, Fort Campbell is looking to request the acceleration of the construction on the new barracks.
McGee approved the RPPB’s FIP recommendations for accelerated and inserted projects during the meeting.
Leaders also discussed Fort Campbell’s progress toward the Army’s Synthetic Training Environment, or STE, which brings together live, virtual and constructive training environments using cutting edge technology from the virtual reality and gaming industries.
“As we transition to the STE, it will be NCO, Soldier-run, low overhead, very adaptable and very responsive to the commanders at all echelons,” said John Watson, chief of the Training Division, Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security. “From the company all the way up to the division level.”
DPTMS hopes to implement STE technology at the Reconfigurable Virtual Collective Trainer starting in 2022, Jones Training Support Center in 2026, Kinnard Mission Training Complex in 2028 and the Network Enterprise Center in a timeframe to be determined. The move is expected to increase training standards, readiness and efficiency across the division.
“Right now, for us to start executing division-level exercises, it takes us 120 days to plan and integrate 57 different databases,” Watson said. “When this comes online, it will be one database, one terrain database and one system with multiple training plugins you can use.”
Additional agencies and organizations that provided updates during the IPB included the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, Army Field Support Battalion-Campbell, USA MEDDAC-Fort Campbell and the Regional Network Enterprise Center.