The acting Army secretary says training Fort Carson soldiers away from the Pinon Canyon training site in southeast Colorado would be costly, and keep soldiers away from home four or five months a year.
The Army has eyed possibly tripling the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site to more than one-thousand square miles, partly to accommodate modern warfare and more soldiers at Fort Carson.
Acting Army Secretary Pete Geren says that while Cold War units required up to 108,000acres for training, new units trained to control more territory with fewer soldiers need up to 160,000 acres.
He told Colorado Senator Wayne Allard in a letter released today that it would cost millions to send soldiers elsewhere to train.
Allard had asked Geren about intentions for Pinon Canyon. Geren says the Army isn't spending money for an environmental impact statement for expansion this year.
Ranchers and others are worried they'll have to give up their land for any expansion. The Army has said it hopes to find willing sellers.
For more stories about the Pinon Canyon expansion, visit KKTV's Pinon Canyon Reports page.