Fort Meade: Evolving for the next 100 years

Imagine if Fort Meade was not undergoing major transformation and another 8,000-10,000 employees would be coming to work on the installation over the next five years.

If our road network and traffic flow were not being addressed, it would become very difficult to get from point A to point B in an efficient way.

Officials note that about 2,900 employees will be new hires, while the other additional employees who currently work at sites off the installation will relocate to work sites on Fort Meade.

Efforts are focused on the improvements necessary for the safety and security of the Fort Meade community while facilitating employees’ ability to get to and from their work sites.

“Fort Meade is a ‘frontline fort,’ ” said Lt. Col. Jay Birmingham, Fort Meade’s deputy garrison commander for transformation. “The joint force at Fort Meade is operating daily, conducting cyber operations and translating information into intelligence to support real-time operations around the clock and world.

“Operations here directly influence the nation’s ability to defend itself and defeat its enemies.”

Fort Meade currently has more than 54,000 employees (service members and civilians), and is the largest employer in the state of Maryland and second largest installation by employee population in the Army.

With the uptick in the employee base imminent, it is important to make improvements to installation access points and ensure the road network can efficiently accommodate the people and vehicle increase.

“Our major access control points are currently in various degrees of work, with completion dates taking us out to 2021,” Birmingham said. “Just as important to the access into and out of the installation is the ability of the external road network to accommodate the increased traffic.

“So, we see the work being done along MD Route 175 from the MD 295/175 interchange going east toward Route 32, which the State Highway Administration of Maryland is engaged in,” Birmingham said. “The SHA is a significant community partner, on behalf of the state of Maryland, in addressing the ongoing road capacity needs around his great defense facility.”

Fort Meade has established a number of organizational relationships to help in meeting the desired conditions for the installation. These relationships include the Community Covenant; the Fort Meade Alliance; partner unit commands; and local, regional, state and national leaders who are important to maintaining visibility and funding for federal and state projects.

“We are meeting weekly with key planners and decision makers to get at the challenges associated with growth,” Birmingham said. ”We couldn’t fully understand and remedy those challenges without their input and support.”

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