In addition to producing documents such as the 2010 JBLM Growth Coordination Plan (published Dec. 2010) and the JBLM Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) , the South Sound Military & Communities Partnership is also committed to bringing military and community members together on a regular basis to share information about current and future projects and to seek funding for infrastructure and other needed regional improvements.
The SSMCP and partners from the State of Washington, Pierce County, City of Lakewood, JBLM and the Department of Defense have completed work on the North Clear Zone Action and Implementation Plan (AIP). In April 2017 the City of Lakewood adopted Resolution No. 2017-09, authorizing the City to sign and execute a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for implementation of the AIP. In May 2017, the MOA was signed by all AIP partners. Now that the AIP is completed and the MOA is signed, the SSMCP and partners are transitioning to implementation of the AIP.
The AIP sets forth a phased strategy consisting of six actions and corresponding implementation steps designed to be carried out over the next 10-20 years to accomplish project objectives, while balancing benefits and costs among stakeholders. All of the actions are anticipated to begin in the short term (0-5 years).
- Changes to City of Lakewood Code and Administrative Processes
- Amortization Study
- Voluntary Property Acquisitions and Business Relocation
- Habitat Restoration and Preservation
- Woodbrook Land Exchange
- AIP Implementation Team
Please see the NCZ project brochure below for additional information on the AIP actions and implementation phases.
About the Project
A Clear Zone is a federally-designated, 3,000-by-3,000-foot safety area adjacent to the end of a runway. This area has the highest statistical possibility of aircraft accidents. Federal Aviation Administration and Department of Defense guidelines call for Clear Zones to be undeveloped and free of people and flight obstructions. This protects the public’s safety and the military’s ability to carry out its missions.
The North Clear Zone is located at the north end of the McChord Field runway. It is partly within JBLM and partly within the City of Lakewood. The part in Lakewood includes many buildings and business on privately-held properties. Based on federal safety guidelines, these uses are incompatible with runway operations and pose public and flight safety risks. At the same time, existing businesses operating in the North Clear Zone are an important part of the local, regional and State economy.
SSMCP recently completed the JBLM Joint Land Use Study (JLUS). One of the highest priority recommendations that came out of JLUS was to develop solutions for the North Clear Zone.
“The potential for accidents is so high [in the Clear Zone] that the land use restrictions necessary to ensure compatibility would prohibit reasonable economic use of the land. Therefore, it is DOD and USAF policy to own the land within the Clear Zone, or control the land through restrictive use easements.” — Air Force Instruction (AFI)32-7063, 18 DEC 2015, para. 3-9, p 24
- Ensure public and air safety
- Bring use of the North Clear Zone into Federal Aviation Administration and Department of Defense regulatory compliance
- Preserve JBLM “Mission Assurance”
- Implement the 2015 JBLM Joint Land Use Study
- Maintain full airfield operational capacity and capability
The North Clear Zone project is being conducted in four phases Phases 1-3 have been completed. They included 1) project startup, which began in summer 2017, 2) strategy analysis and cost estimates for voluntary property acquisition and business relocation, which were conducted between summer and winter 2016, and 3) development of the North Clear Zone Action Plan & Implementation Program and Memorandum of Agreement, which were finalized and adopted in spring 2017 following open houses with property owners and a Lakewood City Council study session and public comment period. The final phase, implementation, is currently underway and is anticipated to continue for the next 10-20 years. Most implementation actions will be led by project partners such as the City of Lakewood, Pierce County and JBLM. SSMCP will continue to be actively engaged, for instance by supporting formation and regular meetings of the AIP Implementation Task Force.
The Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) Growth Coordination Plan (GCP ) is the product of partnerships formed to prepare for growth and change in the South Puget Sound region associated with the joint base.
The Coordination Plan has three intended uses: 1) To provide regional service providers with more information about JBLM population and employment they can use to better support military families in the region; 2) To provide JBLM and community providers with recommendations for leveraging the economic opportunities of base expansion and for providing adequate off-base support services; and 3) To provide public agencies with a consolidated document that provides supporting data for the opportunities and needs identified that can support future grant applications, and inform decision-makers of the urgency for implementation and benefits to both JBLM and the larger region.
This study area does not follow the geographic boundaries of any one entity, jurisdiction, or service agency, and is unique to the needs of those within it. JBLM representatives, Washington State, and community leaders from Pierce and Thurston counties, Lakewood, Tacoma, DuPont, Steilacoom, Lacey, Yelm, Roy, area School Districts, health and social service agencies, and nonprofit service providers in Pierce and Thurston counties participated in the development of this Plan.
This document represents a collective effort to assess the region’s ability to address the impacts of past and future JBLM growth and change. The intent of the Plan is to assist the communities in planning and preparing effectively to maintain and enhance the quality of life of the region as the installation grows in response to Base Realignment and Closure, Army Modular Force, and other Department of Defense initiatives.
The Joint Base Lewis-McChord 2010 Growth Coordination Plan (GCP) includes Six Core Recommendations:
- Formalize New Methods of Regional Collaboration
- Improve Access to Information
- Improve Access to Existing Services
- Promote JBLM as a Center of Regional Economic Significance
- Improve Support for Military Families
- Improve Regional Mobility
As issues are resolved or become obsolete and new issues arise, the SSMCP will supplement its work and move beyond the Growth Coordination Plan while relying on the relationships built while it was developed.
|Transportation||Land Use||Public Safety|
|Utilities||Health Care||Social Services|
|Quality of Life|
In addition, a discussion of the assumptions used to develop costs for the strategies can be found here .
SSMCP Working Groups
The South Sound Military & Communities Partnership continues the work of the Growth Coordination Plan through Working Groups comprised of regional stakeholders and subject matter experts to (1) Assess the continuing relevance of the 2010 GCP recommendations and (2) Make recommendations to the Steering Committee for ongoing implementation and coordination. The groups present updated strategies and priorities to the SSMCP Steering Committee.
Chair: Tom Pierson, President and CEO of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber
Chair: Debbie LeBeau, Clover Park School District Superintendent
Chair: Dr. Anthony Chen, Director of Health, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department
Chair: Dona Ponepinto, President and CEO of United Way of Pierce County
Chair: John Wynands, Washington Department of Transportation Olympic Region Deputy Administrator
JLUS Implementation Task Force
co-Chairs: Jeff Wilson, Director Planning, DuPont and Grant Beck Director Community Development, Yelm
If you would like to participate or provide information to any of the working groups, please contact SSMCP Program staff at (253) 983-7772.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The 2015 JBLM JLUS was a collaborative process among federal, regional, and local governments and agencies; tribes; the public; and the south Puget Sound region’s military installations: Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) and Camp Murray. The study was designed to create a collective regional dialogue around the sometimes complex issues of balancing military operational demands and mission changes with the region’s and local communities’ land use plans, economic development and infrastructure needs, and goals for environmental sustainability. The study area generally encompassed those communities within two miles of the JBLM boundary.
The JBLM JLUS is a four-part planning process that starts with understanding conditions and issues in the study area and then identifying both current and foreseeable compatibility challenges based on land use, growth and development trends, and civilian and military interestts and mission needs. Compatibility challenges can occur when military operations produce impacts, such as noise that affect surrounding communities or when civilian growth and development interfere with the ability to conduct military operations safely and effectively.
Based on analysis and public and agency feedback, the JLUS then developed recommendations to promote greater compatibility between military activities and civilian land uses. The process concluded with a detailed look at action steps to implement recommendations. These recommendations are not binding, but participants are asked to make a good faith efforts to implement proposed action steps.
Involvement by the public and participating agencies was emphasized at all stages of the planning process.
Phase 1: Existing Conditions – Spring 2014 through Winter 2015
Phase 2: Compatibility Analysis – Winter 2015 through Spring 2015
Phase 3: Plan Development – Summer 2015
Phase 4: Implementation – Summer 2015
2015 Joint Land Use Study Documents:
Joint Land Use Study Participating Agencies:
WHAT ABOUT TRANSPORTATION?
The JBLM JLUS incorporates regional transportation work already in progress by WSDOT and other South Puget Sound partners. The JLUS does not include a separate transportation study.
To learn more about the ongoing work on the I-5 JBLM corridor, we encourage you to visit the WSDOT project page .
For more information, contact the South Sound Military & Communities Patrnership at (253) 983-7772.
2016 JBLM/Camp Murray Regional Survey
The South Sound Military & Communities Partnership (SSMCP) conducted a survey hosted by Survey Monkey to Joint Base-Lewis McChord (JBLM) and Camp Murray mail.mil, af.mil email addresses. A wide variety of topics were asked about including housing, education, transition services and perceptions. The primary target audience was Active Duty Service Members and Reservists. Most participants were non-military personnel working on the installation.
2015 Business and Community Survey
JBLM Needs & Preferences Survey
Since 2011, SSMCP has issued two Needs & Preferences Surveys of JBLM active duty and civilian personnel to raise awareness in local communities of the impact JBLM has in the area, strengthen local communities’ ties with JBLM, and bolster the level of service desired by service members off base. It is the intent that these surveys will be issued every two years to keep information accurate and timely for best use by South Sound cities and counties.
The purpose of the 2013-2014 Joint Base Lewis McChord Needs & Preferences Survey was to:
- Provide a refresh of the 2011 data on the demographic profile, perceptions, and needs of military families stationed at, and civilian contractors employed at, JBLM;
- Expand the data set on transitioning service members’ plans for post-active duty life; and,
- Analyze traffic patterns of military families and the civilian workforce.
2011 Trends that Continued
• High satisfaction with the quality of life in the South Sound Region
• > 1/3 of the active duty population has been stationed at JBLM for < 1 year
• Uncertainty among those transitioning off active duty about their future plans
|Greater Pierce County||Unincorporated Pierce County||Greater Thurston County||Unincorporated Thurston County||Greater King County|
New Findings in 2013
• Shift in off-base housing toward Thurston County and rural settings
• Servicemembers and JBLM civilian workers are increasingly frustrated with I-5 traffic and other transportation challenge.
July 15, 2015: Gov. Jay Inslee today signed a bipartisan transportation investment package that will create an estimated 200,000 jobs and address critical safety, maintenance and congestion needs all across Washington. SSMCP supported the adoption of the transportation package as necessary to preserve the abililty of JBLM to perform its off-base missions while also ensuring the ability of the region's population to travel.
The 16-year, $16 billion “Connecting Washington” package includes:
- $8.8 billion for road and safety projects including megaprojects such as SR 520 bridge, the North Spokane Corridor, SR 167/SR 509 Gateway Project, and $494 million for widening of I-5 at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
- $1.4 billion for highway maintenance and preservation.
- $1.3 billion for non-highway projects such as bike paths, rail and transit.
- $602 million for ferries including a fourth Olympic Class Ferry Vessel.
- Other investments related to fish barrier removal, bridge preservation, freight rail improvements, electric vehicle and alternative fuel tax credits and commute trip reduction programs.
The package also authorizes Sound Transit to seek voter-approval for $15 billion to extend light rail as far north as Everett and as far south as Tacoma.
In 2013, a joint I-5 corridor planning study was initiated involving WSDOT, JBLM, FHWA and local jurisdictions. The study is evaluating the best way to improve transportation through the JBLM vicinity. The task of the planning study is to define improvements that could relieve congestion on I-5 from Center Drive to Gravelly Lake Drive, with a focus on the interchanges at the Steilacoom-DuPont exit (#119), 41st Division Drive/Main Gate exit (#120), Berkeley Street exit (#122) and the Thorne Lane exit (#123). SSMCP supports and is involved in this effort.
May 5, 2015 I-5 Open House/Environmental Scoping Meeting at McGavick Conference Center, Lakewood, WA
Specifically, the study addresses options to: relieve congestion on I-5, improve system efficiency, enhance mobility, improve safety and operations, and increase transit and alternative commute opportunities.
You can view more detail about the ongoing efforts on the Washington State Department of Transportation Website
SSMCP Funding Successes