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Military Base Realignments and Closures: Transportation Impact of Personnel Increases Will Be Significant, but Long-Term Costs Are Uncertain and Direct Federal Support Is Limited

GAO-09-750 Published: Sep 09, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 09, 2009.
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As part of the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) round, the Department of Defense (DOD) plans to relocate over 123,000 military and DOD civilian personnel, thereby increasing the staffing at 18 bases nationwide. In addition, DOD and local officials expect thousands of dependents and DOD contractor employees to relocate to communities near the BRAC 2005 growth bases. These actions will greatly increase traffic in the surrounding communities. BRAC recommendations must be implemented by September 2011. The House and Senate Committees on Appropriations directed GAO to assess and report on the impact of BRAC-related growth on transportation systems and on the responses of federal, state, and local governments. Accordingly, GAO determined the (1) expected impact on transportation in communities affected by BRAC decisions, and (2) federal, state, and local response to the expected impacts. To perform its work, GAO obtained information from the 18 communities with expected substantial BRAC growth; visited 8 of these communities; interviewed federal civilian and military officials and state and local officials; and reviewed DOD data, transportation plans, and environmental studies. GAO provided copies of this report to the Departments of Defense and Transportation for their review. The Departments provided technical comments, which GAO incorporated as appropriate.

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Base realignmentsCost analysisDefense procurementFederal aid for highwaysFederal aid for transportationstate relationsFunds managementImpacted areasLocal governmentsMilitary basesMilitary facilitiesMilitary forcesPopulation growthPublic roads or highwaysRoad constructionStrategic planningCost estimates