AP sources: Army chooses Austin for new Futures Command HQ

WASHINGTON — Army leaders will announce on Friday that they have chosen Austin, Texas, as the location for a new command headquarters that will focus on how to modernize the service and prepare for future wars, U.S. officials said.

The Army laid out plans to create the so-called Futures Command last October, marking the first time in decades that the service has added such a high-level, new headquarters.

Austin, known for its live music scene, also has a favorable business, academic and technology climate that will mesh well with the Army's needs, said the officials, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the selection before it was made public.

The command is expected to have a staff of about 500 people, led by a four-star general.

Initially, 15 cities were in contention, but the Army narrowed down the list to five finalists last month: Austin, Boston, Minneapolis, Philadelphia and Raleigh, North Carolina.

Army leaders have said they wanted the headquarters located near technology and innovation experts who can identify emerging threats and help develop systems and equipment to counter them.

"We're looking at the best of what America has to offer when it comes to technology and industry and education," Army Col. Patrick Seiber, spokesman for the Army Futures Command Task Force, said last month. "That means we need to get to where these folks are."

Army leaders also wanted a place where people would want to live. They looked at how much money is spent in each city on research and development, among other factors.

The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce touted the city as a place where its many entrepreneurs, college students and military reservists could offer the command new ideas.

Battered by nearly 17 years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq and strained by escalating cybersecurity threats, the rising powers of China and Russia, challenges in North Korea and Iran, and stubborn insurgencies in Yemen, Somalia and Syria, the U.S. military has struggled to keep pace with evolving technologies while still meeting the immediate combat, equipment and staffing needs for the current global fights.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has made it clear that military readiness and lethality are his key priorities for the department and that the services must be prepared for an ever-changing enemy.

But the Pentagon and the services are historically mired in bureaucratic red tape, making it difficult to make decisions or changes quickly, particularly involving acquisition efforts to buy or upgrade equipment and systems.

Related News

Rugby couple put respect in front and center in Olympics

Aug 10, 2016

Isadora Cerullo has become a celebrity around Rio, more for what happened on the sidelines of the Olympic rugby stadium than for her performances on the pitch

Teenager who scaled Trump Tower had past problems at home

Aug 11, 2016

A Virginia teenager who climbed partway up Trump Tower in New York City had a history of problems at home

Asian shares climb, tracking gains in US stocks, oil prices

Aug 12, 2016

Asian shares rose Friday, tracking the rally in U.S. stocks that was driven by strong gains by energy companies and retailers

Search

Deck Biz is an intelligent platform providing international and regional business news updates. You won’t get these insights elsewhere other than Deck Biz.

Contact us: sales@deckbiz.com