In the next 20 years, the Department of Defense (DoD) will face a major compliance challenge as more than 100,000 buildings will be 50 years old or older, almost doubling the current number of properties subject to the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA). The Army and DoD have sought programmatic compliance alternatives to meet this impending challenge, and allocate scarce funding and resources. Recently, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) issued three Program Comments for World War II and Cold War Era properties that addressed NHPA compliance requirements for 45,000 DoD buildings, including 35,000 in the Army. These Comments cover Cold War Era (1946-1974) Unaccompanied Personnel Housing, World War II and Cold War (1939-1974) Ammunition Storage Facilities, and World War II and Cold War (1939-1974) Army Ammunition Production Facilities and Plants. Upon the DoD publication of its Notice of Adoption (expected April '07), installations may proceed with actions affecting these properties without further NHPA Section 106 compliance responsibilities.
The Program Comments cover:
Management actions covered by the Program Comments are ongoing operations, maintenance and repair; rehabilitation; renovation; mothballing; cessation of maintenance, new construction, demolition; deconstruction and salvage; remediation activities; and transfer, sale, lease, and closure of such facilities. Installations have no further requirements to identify, evaluate, treat, mitigate or consult with their State Historic Preservation Offices (SHPO) regarding any Cold War Era (1946-74) UPH, World War II and Cold War Era (1939-74) ammunition storage facilities, and World War II and Cold War Era (1939-74) Army ammunition production facilities and Plants.
The Army's mitigation and treatment measures under the Program Comments are being met by the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (ACSIM). The Army is responsible for creating a publicly available version of the existing context entitled Unaccompanied Personnel Housing (UPH) During the Cold War (1946-1989); a Historic Context on ammunition storage facilities that goes beyond the existing context ("Army Ammunition and Explosives Storage in the United States, 1775-1945") to cover the Cold War Era; documentation of ammunition storage facilities at nine installations, six of which have World War II-era properties, and three of which have Cold War Era properties; a Historic Context on World War II and Cold War Era Army Ammunition Facilities and Plants; documentation of selected architecturally significant ammunition production facilities and Plants at two installations; and a display and popular publication on the ammunition production process, from production to storage.
The text of the Program Comments can be found on DENIX. Guidance for installations and lists of properties affected by the Program Comments are available to Army employees on the Cultural Resources AKO site.