ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. (KSDK) - Jefferson Barracks has been tapped as the site for a new military intelligence operation.
Soldiers have already begun to move into Building 27, which sits on the west side of the historic military post in south St. Louis County.
"The detachment will primarily consist of the analysis and control element of the division," explained Major Greg T. Roman, detachment commander. "For the most part our mission will be to gather intelligence on our adversaries and pass it upward to the intelligence command."
Lt. Col. William J. Banwell, Missouri National Guard Intelligence officer, said officials at the National Guard Bureau and the Department of Defense chose the Jefferson Barracks site for good reason.
"The planners were looking for a Midwestern location because we already have plenty of similar assets in California, Utah and in the eastern U.S.," he said. "We were also interested in forming a joint reserve intelligence program at Jefferson Barracks. Another advantage to the St. Louis area is the location of the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (in Arnold) which is going to be a focal point of our training and expertise. The location also puts us close to U.S. Transportation Command at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois and to other service entities in the area such as the Navy Reserve and the Air National Guard."
The only hurdle at this point is renovating the 114 year old building to fit the needs of the new operation.
"We're looking at funding anywhere between $600,000 and $3 million on the renovation of the annex and the main building," said Banwell. "There may be additional funding for Building 27 renovations but we are still looking at several different options involving administration, logistics and a means of billeting. And because Jefferson Barracks is a historic site, we have to walk a respectful line with regards to history when we bring the building up to modern code."
Established in 1832, Jefferson Barracks is the oldest continually operational military post west of the Mississippi River and is a National Historic Site. The 135-acre facility is home to several National Guard and Army Reserve units.