Representatives from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District attended a groundbreaking ceremony March 6, 2013, at the U.S. Army Garrison Camp Parks Reserve Training center in Dublin, Calif., to kick off the first construction phase of the largest Army Reserve Property Exchange Agreement in Department of Defense history.
The Sacramento District's real estate office is overseeing the transfer of 180 acres in the southwest corner of Camp Parks in exchange for an estimated $66 million in new facilities to be built over the next several years.
"This groundbreaking signifies the start of many great things for the Army Reserve soldiers here," said Col. William Leady, the district's commander who attended the ceremony. "And I'm proud of our real estate office for their role in making this real property exchange a reality, and with no cost to the taxpayers."
The Army Reserve has congressional authority to exchange its land for new facilities using private funding. Instead of attempting to tap federal resources, Camp Park's new facilities will be paid for and constructed in six phases by SunCal, a privately-held land developer that won the Army's competitive selection process in 2008. After each phase is completed, the district's real estate office will facilitate the documentation necessary for the deeds of transfer.
The district took over the Army Reserve's land exchange program covering everything west of the Mississippi in 2006. Real estate chief Sharon Caine and her office will handle the official documents and deeds between Army Reserve headquarters in Virginia and the developer. Since taking over the program, Caine's office has completed two land exchanges and is working on six more.
"The area surrounding Camp Parks is a lot more populated than when it was established in the 1940's, and the southwest corner of the center has somewhat divided how the community has grown," said Caine. "My office and staff help make sure the Army Reserve gets a fair deal and both parties receive what they've agreed upon—reuniting the community, while helping upgrade facilities at this important training center."
The first phase will include a new access control point, which includes a modernized main gate; a 4,300-square-foot administration/police department building; a 1,200-square-foot visitor center; and a mail room. The first phase is expected to be completed and operational by April 2014.
Completion of the first phase will open up a key corridor of land that has been slowly engulfed on three sides by the growing city of Dublin.
Camp Parks was built during World War II and commissioned in January 1943, and is mainly used for training of National Guard and Army Reserve soldiers and Naval Reserve sailors.