GAO investigation concludes, bringing Space Command one step closer to Huntsville—Everything you need to know

Redstone Arsenal
Redstone Arsenal is one step closer to being Space Command’s new home. (Nathan Watson / Hville Blast)

The final investigation hindering Redstone Arsenal from being the host to Space Command has now been completed.

Today, the Government Accountability Office released a report stating that, while the Air Force’s process for choosing Space Command’s location was not completely up to par with recommendations, there is no further reason to doubt the decision.

Read on for our breakdown.

Space Command’s new home

U.S. Space Command logo
Space Command is poised to relocate more than 1,000 employees to Redstone Arsenal. (Space Command / Facebook)

The Air Force originally announced its decision to move Space Command to Redstone Arsenal in January 2021. Redstone was chosen based on its performance in the following factors, according the Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs:

  • Workforce size + qualification
  • Local school system
  • Infrastructure capacity
  • Low initial + recurring costs
  • Facility availability

However, the decision was immediately appealed by a delegation from Colorado Springs, Co., which is where Space Command HQ currently resides.

This appeal led to two independent investigations, both of which have upheld the initial decision. The first, from the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Defense, was completed and published just last month. Today’s report from the GAO, Congress’s non-partisan, independent arm, was the second.

While the GAO report is not exactly complimentary of the Air Force’s decision-making process, calling into question the decision’s transparency, it does not cast any doubt on the process’s outcome. That is to say, Redstone Arsenal still stands out as the top choice for Space Command HQ.

What local leadership is saying

Saturn V
Further proof that Huntsville is out of this world. (Emily Phillips / Hville Blast)

The Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce released a statement expressing their support for the decision and anticipation of USSPACECOM’s arrival in Huntsville.

“The Redstone Region provides exceptional cost benefits, a high quality of life, and a robust network of related space agencies and space industry support. Redstone offers a great value to the American taxpayer, with the cost of construction index and sustainment cost significantly lower than the national average. It offers a shovel-ready site with plenty of room to grow, a history of successfully delivering large construction projects on time and within budget, and excellent access to Redstone through its six widely dispersed gates.”

Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber’s statement also highlighted the 70+ other federal agencies that currently operate on Redstone Arsenal, which first opened as an Army base in the early 1940s. Those agencies include:

  • Army Materiel Command
  • Missile Defense Agency
  • Space and Missile Defense Command
  • The FBI
  • NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center
  • Army Aviation Command

We’re excited to welcome Space Command to Huntsville. Make sure to keep up with all things Huntsville by subscribing to our FREE newsletter today.

Emily Phillips
Emily Phillips
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