What was the Grissom ARB Joint Land Use Study?
The Grissom Air Reserve Base (ARB) Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) was a cooperative planning effort between Grissom ARB and the counties of Miami, Howard, Cass, and Wabash; the cities of Peru, Kokomo, Logansport, and Wabash; the towns of Bunker Hill, Converse, Galveston, and Walton; and other local stakeholders. The study was administered by the Miami County Economic Development Authority (MCEDA) and was co-funded through a grant from the Department of Defense (DOD), Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA). The JLUS project was completed in April 2018.
The Grissom ARB JLUS benefits both the Air Force and the surrounding region by:
- preserving long-term land use compatibility between Grissom ARB and the surrounding communities;
- sustaining the operational mission of the Air Force in North-Central Indiana while protecting the quality of life of nearby residents and businesses;
- enhancing communication and coordination among local and regional stakeholders; and
- integrating the growth plans of the communities in the region with Air Force plans and mission operations.
What was the purpose of the JLUS?
The purpose of the JLUS was to identify means of promoting land uses near Grissom ARB that are compatible with the base’s military missions, to accommodate compatible growth and economic development locally, to protect public safety and quality of life, and to sustain the mission of the Air Force in North-Central Indiana. The JLUS evaluated ways to enhance communication and coordination among local and regional stakeholders with the goal of continued compatible land use strategies, as both the community and the Air Force plan for the future. The JLUS itself did not result in changes to land use, zoning, or how a property owner may use their property, though it did identify regulatory changes for the community to consider. However, during the preparation of the JLUS, Miami County and the Town of Bunker Hill developed military overlays applicable within their respective planning and zoning jurisdictions. At the completion of the JLUS, these zoning overlays were under consideration for adoption by the Miami County Board of Commissioners and the Bunker Hill Town Council.
What did the JLUS address?
The Joint Land Use Study provided:
- an assessment of existing land use conditions near Grissom ARB, to include potential perceived incompatible land uses, if any;
- an assessment of potential future civilian and military land use conditions, to include projected incompatible uses, if any; and
- strategies to promote compatible land use planning around Grissom ARB and the surrounding communities.
Compatible land use planning can be defined as the balance between the needs and interests of the community and the needs and interests of Grissom ARB. To assess compatibility, the project team identified current or potential encroachment issues, which may include noise, endangered species/critical habitat, safety/security, air or water quality, regional airspace management, energy development, and frequency spectrum interference, among other potential issues.
How long did the project take?
The Grissom ARB JLUS took just less than a year and was completed in April of 2018. The Policy Committee recommended implementation of the recommendations in the JLUS on April 9, 2018.
What lands outside of Grissom ARB were included in the JLUS?
Grissom ARB is comprised of approximately 1,350 acres of federally-owned land in Miami County, located roughly ten miles north of Kokomo, Indiana. Please click here to see a map of the Grissom ARB JLUS Study Area. The Grissom ARB JLUS considered lands associated with Ranges, Military Training Routes, Special Use Airspace, and Military Operating Areas used by Grissom ARB, as applicable.
Who guided the development of the JLUS?
The Miami County Economic Development Authority was the Joint Land Use Study fiscal agent and project manager. The development of the JLUS was guided by the Policy Committee, with input from the Technical Working Group and the public. The Policy Committee was comprised of local elected officials, the Grissom ARB Installation Commander, and other senior representatives from local organizations. The Technical Working Group was comprised of area planners and economic development officials, the Grissom ARB Community Planner, Chief Engineer, and Public Affairs Officer. Collectively, the Policy Committee and the Technical Working Group were known as the JLUS Steering Committee.
What were the opportunities for public input?
There were a number of opportunities for public input throughout the JLUS process. Public meetings were held on June 7th and October 10th of 2017 and April 9, 2018. The presentations from those three meetings can be found here (http://grissom-jlus.org/project-materials/). Also, a public survey was conducted during the first few months of the project and those results are included in the final JLUS report. Community members were encouraged throughout the process to provide inputs on the Grissom ARB JLUS by email. In addition, a Facebook page was maintained and all public input sessions were advertised through local media outlets.