US Congressman Brett Guthrie received updates on ongoing projects at Fort Knox during a visit Friday (4/9) to the Army post in the Central Kentucky.
He was updated but installation leaders on health and welfare projects which include housing and plans for a new $69 million elementary school to ensure a support infrastructure and life for the service personnel. Guthrie said the housing market around Fort Knox is very competitive as leaders have worked the past several years to keep the military installation viable to the Army’s mission along with adjoining communities. Major General John Evans Jr. said that military housing is around 90 percent on base, which one of the highest rates in the country.
Guthrie was provided a aerial tour of the construction work on a $45 million Digital Air-Ground Integration Range being developed on the former tank ranges at the facility. Once completed at the end of 2022 or early 2023, the digital range will be the only range of it’s kind east of the Mississippi River. The range will allow advanced training for soldiers to develop and train for various tactical operations on the battle field. Congressman Guthrie and Major General John Evans Jr. voiced the importance of the range which assist the local economy as trainees from around the country will be visiting Fort Knox and visiting the local merchants.
Both expressed their excitement for the stand up of the Fifth Corps, three star general command, which was activated in October 2020. This continues to the strengthen the importance of the mission of Fort Knox as Human Resources for the Army. Major General Evans said that he is excited about bringing back about 10,000 ROTC cadets during a COVID informed camp this summer. Another 3000 to 5000 support training personnel will also be in route over the next 100 days to support the efforts. Major General Evans said this the some first steps out of the current COVID cycle to capitalize on training opportunities as more vaccinations are being administered.
Both discussed ongoing conversations related to noise abatement related to training efforts on Fort Knox. Major General Evans said that Army leaders understand that the disruption that occurs with some training that requires live ammunition, aircraft or other heavy equipment. He said that night time training is a requirement and efforts are made to minimize the amount of disruptive noise as possible during reasonable hours of the night. Evans said leaders are reviewing concerns voiced by Bullitt County leaders since the firing ranges are adjacent to their side of the military base. No definite solutions have been found, but leaders are working on the issues.
Both Congressman Guthrie and Major General Evans agreed that Fort Knox is a family friendly military base and a great asset to the local community. You can watch the entire press briefing in our “On Demand” section.
Photos: Courtesy of Ft. Knox Public Affairs