Under an approved 2005 BRAC recommendation, the U.S. Army’s 1st Armored Division (1st AD), the oldest and most prestigious armored division in the United States Army, is realigning from Germany to Ft. Bliss, TX as part of the largest single U.S. force resettlement to U.S. soil in U.S. history.
Submitted by Ft. Bliss Public Affairs
In 2005, the Pentagon recommended transforming Fort Bliss into a heavy armor training post, to include approximately 11,500 new troops from the U.S. 1st Armored Division currently stationed in Germany, as well as units from Fort Sill and Fort Hood. As part of this transformation, an estimated 15,918 military jobs and 384 civilian jobs will be transferred to Fort Bliss, bringing the total number of troops stationed there under the realignment to 35,000 by 2011.
1. Please explain the decision to have the 1st AD to come home to Fort Bliss?
In the DoD's 2005 BRAC report, DoD rated Fort Bliss #1 in military value and recommended relocating 1st Armored Division from Germany and to Fort Bliss, Texas. Relocating 1st Armored Division units and echelons above division (EAD) units to Fort Bliss would transform it from an institutional training installation into a major mounted maneuver training installation and would avoid overcrowding and overuse at other installations. The 1st, 3rd and 4th Brigade Combat Teams are currently at Fort Bliss with 4-1 and 1-1 deployed to Iraq, scheduled to return later this year.
2. Regarding the timeline for BRAC-mandated realignment of 1st AD, please explain the slated upcoming unit move?
In FY 2010, the-2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division (HBCT); the 212th Military Police, and the 68th Transportation Company will officially standup at Fort Bliss. FY 2011 includes the arrival of the 1st Armored Division Headquarters now in Germany; a Combat Aviation Brigade and the 15th Sustainment Brigade from Fort Hood, Texas; a Fires Brigade, currently in Korea serving as the 210th, which will deactivate and activate at Fort Bliss as the 212th; and, the 86th Expeditionary Signal Battalion from Fort Huachuca.
3. With the realignment of elements of 1st AD in CONUS please explain the planned infrastructure to accommodate these units at Ft. Bliss.
Basically, we have/will have constructed three complexes for the HBCT, 2 IBCTs, a CAB, and a Fires Bde footprint(s) for the major units coming to Bliss. This also includes a new 1st Armored Division Headquarters building and some new construction on main post for smaller units as well as various renovations of legacy facilities. Numerous digital tank and aviation ranges, and small arms ranges are in varying stages of construction. Many new quality of life projects including youth and child care centers, fitness centers, a new hospital, Consolidated Troop and Family Medical Clinic, and dental clinic. AAFES is constructing various new facilities including a lifestyle center (Freedom Crossing at Fort Bliss, largest in DoD), a number of shoppettes, and mini-malls. New family housing is under construction with the privatized partner. Under ARRA of 2009, a new $50 million Warrior Transition Complex is being constructed for wounded warriors.
4. Please detail any planned/projected activities for the realigned 1st AD moving forward.
The first ceremonial event will be the arrival of the 1st Armored Division colors and the official opening of the 1st Armored Division Museum, with many of the items already arrived from Germany. There is an ongoing community effort to provide the best housing and schools for the soldiers and families.