US Army Worldwide Housing Requirements

US Army Worldwide Housing Requirements

RDN completed a five-year assessment of on-post housing requirements for nearly all Army installations in the United States and selected overseas installations in the United Kingdom, Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Japan, and Republic of Korea. The Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (OACSIM) is charged with planning, budgeting, and supporting implementation of all housing projects. Annual capital budgets for these efforts total hundreds of millions of dollars. The first step in the resource allocation process is determining requirements for both family housing and unaccompanied personnel housing. The Army’s Unit of Action/Modularity reorganizations, started in 2004 concurrently with planning for return of substantial numbers of personnel from Europe and Korea, and the rapid pace of deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, resulted in significant shifts in Army units and personnel among domestic bases. This process has since been accelerated under the Base Re-Alignment and Closure (BRAC) changes announced in 2005.

We have served as requirements determination contractor for OACSIM for more than ten years, working at more than 90 Army installations throughout the United States, Europe, and the Far East. This project built on our prior real estate market experience at each of these installations to develop an integrated assessment process for all domestic and overseas Army installations. Our approach incorporated varying levels of detailed geographic database development and economic and modeling analysis among installations, with the greatest concentrations of effort on major installations subject to large shifts in military forces. Assessments included detailed economic and housing market analyses for major installations and compilations of military personnel using the Army Stationing and Installation Plan (ASIP) database.

An essential part of the analysis was to address the population and housing market impacts of the modularity and BRAC-related force structure changes. For example, at Fort Bliss, with more than 10,000 incoming personnel, we estimated the effects of this change within a five-year period on total population and housing demand (including vacancy rates and induced housing development) in the greater El Paso, Texas, metropolitan area. These impact assessments, built on detailed census-tract-level geographic databases, then provided critical economic context to the projection of housing requirements at Fort Bliss, since Army policy is to provide housing on post only for personnel not likely to obtain suitable-quality, affordable housing in the surrounding communities. We applied in-house models approved by the Office of the Secretary of Defense to forecast the extent of adequate-quality housing expected to be available to military personnel over a five-year planning horizon. The balance of military housing requirements must be met through Army action (privatized housing or appropriated funding). Our work formed the basis for OACSIM budgetary analyses as well as Residential Communities Initiative (RCI) projects to privatize on-post housing. Our projections of requirements were critical determinants of the scope of RCI projects planned at nearly all major Army installations.