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The Defense Department is spending more than $35 billion to move 123,000 employees and change the makeup of more than 8,000 bases across the country under the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) initiative. In our special report, BRAC Impact: A Federal News Radio and WTOP In Depth Series, we explore the effect moving hundreds of thousands of workers across DoD will have on the military and the contractors that support them.
Most of these employees are coming from Ft. Monmouth, a base in New Jersey that is closing under BRAC.
The health care of wounded warriors, military members and their families in the area is about to change forever, and the change is historic. And, after 102 years, Walter Reed Medical Center will close.
In a column for Federal News Radio, Ft. Meade Commander Col. Dan Thomas says, "By this fall, the official worker population of Fort Meade will have grown to more than 48,000. This is 13,000 more personnel than we had three years ago - you do the math: if BRAC growth is 5,400, who are all these other people?"
Traffic in the Route 355 corridor around NIH is only expected to get worse after the transition of employees from Walter Reed to the National Naval Medical Center.
Moving into a new building has allowed DISA to revamp its technology infrastructure, including consolidating circuits, servers and paper records. The Joint Task Force, National Capital Region Medical is building a new network to carry health data and applications for three services to share. Both organizations say without BRAC, these changes would have taken longer to happen.
Federal News Radio conducted an online survey about how the changes to DoD's structure and facilities is affecting federal employees. Respondents expressed frustration over planning, concern over traffic, and doubt about whether moving offices will improve how they meet their mission.
It is not inconceivable that as Congress and the administration debate the fiscal 2012 spending plan with an eye to the years that will follow, that there will be a need for another round of base realignments and closures.
D.C. has the second worst traffic in the nation but if we play our cards right, we might be able to overtake Los Angeles just in time for your next visit to headquarters! Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says we've identified the problem, now check out the solution.
BRAC means hundreds of thousands of lives, both federal and private, are about to change.
WTOP's Hank Silverberg has a preview of his BRAC Impact report on the MARC Center in Alexandria.
Federal News Radio has compiled a list of important links and resources on the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure.