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Safeguard sites selected in Missouri

Safeguard sites selected in Missouri

(ARADCOM ARGUS, March 1971)

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Huntsville, Ala. -- The Army has selected five locations in the vicinity of Whiteman AFB, Mo., for the construction of Safeguard Ballistic Missile Defense System facilities.

A Missile Site Radar (MSR) installation with Spartan and Sprint missile launching cells, and associated facilities, is planned approximately 3 miles southwest of Hughesville in Pettis County.

In addition, Remote Launch Sites (RLS) with Sprint missiles are planned at the following approximate locations: 2 miles northeast of Concordia in Lafayette County; 2 miles west of Otterville in Cooper County; 10 miles northeast of Hughesville in Pettis County; 6 miles southwest of La Monte also in Pettis County.

In February the Army notified Congress of its intent to acquire an interest in the land at each of the five locations.

Up to 400 acres of land will be acquired for fee for the MSR installation and each of the RLS's will require about 50 acres of land in fee. In addition, restrictive easements of some 225 acres at the radar site and 300 acres at each of the remote sites will be required.

The selection of these locations ended an intensive site selection and validation effort which began in Cooper, Morgan, Pettis, Johnson, Saline and Lafayette Counties in early October.

The locations which were selected best suited the requirements for tactical effectivenes, size, compatibility with the local environment, and construction feasibility.

By law a Real Estate Acquisition Report must be submitted to the Congress when the Army desires to acquire an interest in substantial amounts of land. This report provides a description of the land, why it is being purchased, the acreage required, its exact location and its current estimated value. After the report has been submitted, the Army must wait at least 30 days before taking any steps to acquire an interest in the land.

Additional sub-surface explorations will take place at some locations to aid in the design of structures to be built there. The Army has employed an architectural and engineering firm to design the Missouri facilities and prepare detailed plans and specifications for the construction.

Contracts for construction of the major tactical facilities are scheduled to be let by the Army Corps of Engineers in the summer of 1971. Construction at the sites is expected to take about 31 months, followed by another 21 months of equipment installation and testing.

The Missouri deployment was authorized in the FY 71 Department of Defense Authorization Bill, and will be built to protect Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missiles located in the area. It will be the third such installation built under the Safeguard program.

The sites are planned to be operational in 1976 and will be manned by military and civilian personnel.