The defense industry plays a vital role in the Fredericksburg Region, with three installations that provide for the operational readiness of the United States military. Representing a total of more than 230 years of military and defense presence in the region, these facilities furnish leadership in engineering and technology for the next generation of surface combatant ships, interagency coordination of national security measures and training and testing for all services.
They also serve as integrators of homeland defense technologies for the future of war fighting. The region’s defense industry provides nearly 32,000 jobs and pumps more than $1.2 billion into the local economy.
Naval Support Facility Dahlgren
Naval Support Facility (NSF) Dahlgren is located in King George County. Dahlgren provides critical expertise in the research, development, test and evaluation of naval warfare systems. Military commands residing on the base today represent numerous scientific and response-force missions serving all branches of the United States armed forces. In addition to its military value, today Naval Support Facility (NSF) Dahlgren makes a significant economic contribution to the local community and serves as one of the largest employers in King George County and the surrounding area.
NSF Dahlgren consists of approximately 4,300 acres and employs more than 4,500 civilians, approximately 340 military personnel and more than 2,700 badged contractors. The aggregate budget authorization for the major commands at Dahlgren totaled more than $3.5 billion in fiscal year 2010. Major military organizations on the base include the host command, Naval Support Activity South Potomac, as well as supported commands: Navy Air and Missile Defense Command, Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense, Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, the Center for Surface Combat Systems, the Aegis Training and Readiness Center, the Joint Warfare Analysis Center, the U.S. Air Force 20th Space Control Squadron Detachment 1 and the U.S. Air Force 614th Air and Space Operations Center Detachment 1.
Dahlgren is the Navy’s technology and development leader for guns, projectiles and fuzes. It pioneered the development of fire control and targeting software for strategic nuclear weapon systems. Dahlgren represents the Navy’s knowledge base in Tomahawk Weapon System computer programs and provides the naval expertise for all aspects of chemical, biological and radiological defense. Dahlgren is also home to key Department of Defense and Navy initiatives focused on protecting America from ballistic missile attack.
Fort A.P. Hill
Fort A.P. Hill, part of the Army Installation Management Command’s Atlantic Region, is a regional training center providing realistic joint and combined arms training support to America’s Defense Forces. The all-purpose Regional Training Center, bordering Caroline and Essex counties, serves every component of the U.S. Defense Forces, active and reserve, and several agencies of the U.S. government. The post spans 76,000 acres and includes a 28,000-live-fire range complex capable of accommodating all traditional small arms, plus mortar, artillery and combined running fire, hover fire and terrain flight aerial gunnery.
Unencumbered by environmental constraints, Fort A.P. Hill is used extensively for Army and joint warfighter training exercises, as well as interagency use. It has served as a major training and mobilization-support site since its establishment in 1941. Military units have used Fort A.P. Hill to maintain their readiness and combat skills proficiency during years of relative peacetime. Hundreds of units preparing for deployment for such operations as Desert Shield and Desert Storm, or missions in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq and other destinations associated with “harm’s way,” have made Fort A.P. Hill the place where they sharpen their combat edge.
Fort A.P. Hill is a crown jewel in the Department of Defense’s installation inventory, used extensively for Army and joint warfighter training exercises, as well as interagency operations. It is considered one of only two Army installations in the entire Northeastern U.S. capable of training a large maneuver force. The post is one of the largest East Coast installations and is the range and training center nearest the National Capital Region.
It hosts more than 658,000 man-days of training annually, representing more than 92,000 warriors who honed their combat prowess at the post in 2011. Its annual operating budget was approximately $50 million in fiscal year 2011.
Fort A.P. Hill has, historically, been a significant generator of income and jobs for Caroline County. Fort A.P. Hill conducted a detailed economic analysis of its fiscal year 2010 impacts. Total impacts statewide were nearly a quarter of a billion dollars, with 1,655 supported full-time equivalent jobs in addition to the 745 jobs directly supported at the installation. With 745 total jobs on the installation, Fort A.P. Hill is the largest workforce in Caroline County, just ahead of the Caroline public school system. Fort A.P. Hill’s total economic impact on the Commonwealth of Virginia is $243 million and shows little signs of slowing down.
Beyond supporting our nation’s warriors, the installation readily assists neighboring localities with highly trained, professional fire and emergency response via mutual aid agreements.
Marine Corps Base Quantico
Marine Corps Base Quantico – where vital concepts, training and equipment of the future are developed – has been the initial training ground for thousands of Marines since its establishment in Stafford County in 1917. Some of the most important techniques in war fighting were born at Quantico – including amphibious warfare, for which the Marine Corps is renowned.
MCB Quantico is home to the Marine Corps Combat Development Command and numerous tenant organizations. The base staff provides infrastructure, operational and community services support to these organizations and to the military members, families and civilians who live and work on base. The base is also a key player in support of overall Marine Corps objectives and programs and plays host to scores of training events, conferences, symposia and other special events.
MCB Quantico employs more than 20,000 military and civilian personnel.
It serves as a focal point for Professional Military Education within the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps University provides an academic platform to shape leaders throughout their military careers. It also serves as home of the National Museum of the Marine Corps, which looms over Interstate 95 with its roof that recalls the famous Iwo Jima Flag-raising of World War II.