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How Can Defense Communities Better Support Growing Installations?

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  • May 26, 2011
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Growing military installations face a host of challenges related to mission readiness and sustainability that can only be addressed through collaborative planning with local and regional authorities. Many of those issues center around the community’s ability to support the base and its personnel, including housing, transportation, environmental infrastructure, public safety, and workforce and education.

During a special Innovation Laboratory at the 2011 Annual Conference in Norfolk, participants will use a variety of installation and community planning documents from Fort Bliss and the El Paso region to explore different approaches local and military leaders can use to take on these complex issues. The interactive exercises used during the session will help attendees understand what kinds of issues are best addressed through community-military partnering, what tools are available to promote cooperation, and what the best practices for resolving differences are.

With funding for installations and communities expected to be tight in the coming years, collaboration between stakeholders on both sides will be especially critical. As one of the fastest growing installations, Fort Bliss will provide participants a realistic case study to examine how one region has dealt with a number of planning challenges. Following an initial presentation, the lab will break into subgroups to take a close look at specific community services before reviewing the results from all of the groups’ discussions.

Participants in the lab will represent a cross-section of stakeholders:

  • Fort Bliss, commander and the director of public works
  • City of El Paso, city manager
  • University of Texas El Paso, Center for Research Entrepreneurship and Innovative Enterprises
  • El Paso Chamber of Commerce

The Fort Bliss Innovation Lab will be held Sunday, July 17 at 1:30 p.m. There is no additional fee to participate in the laboratory, but be sure to sign up for it when you submit your conference registration. The Annual Conference runs from July 17-20 at the Marriott Waterside in Norfolk. For more information on the conference, visit our website.

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