Could Camp Grayling Grow?
By Northern Express Staff & Contributors | May 14, 2022
The Michigan National Guard military training complex at Camp Grayling could be getting bigger. Twice as big, in fact. The 148,000-acre camp is looking to make the move to 320,000 acres by requesting access to land managed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Camp Grayling is already the largest national guard training facility in the country, so why the bigger footprint? A top reason is that training for 21st century problems—think electronic crimes and wars in space—requires more breathing room so nearby radio and cyber signals aren’t jammed. Proponents see opportunity for job creation and positive economic impacts from trainees who stay and dine in the area. But concerns have also arisen around the proposal, namely as it relates to the environmental impact on key waterways like the AuSable and Manistee rivers, especially as Camp Grayling already has had issues with a toxic chemical plume stemming from their airfield. A 2014 expansion of the camp was scuttled, so will the second time be the charm? We’ll have to wait and see.