Fort Drum— Since 9/11, Fort Drum’s 10th Mountain Division has always had at least one of its 5 Brigades deployed. However, according to Lt. Col David Konop, “For the first time, all 5 of the major brigades are here at Fort Drum, since the 3rd brigade returned roughly 8 months ago.”
Apart from having thousands of soldiers back in the North Country, Lt. Col Konop thinks the trend of families moving away during a deployment has been reducing, generating a tremendous positive impact on the North Counrty’s economy.
According to Konop, over the past several years, dependents of soldiers are choosing to remain in Northern New York during deployments. Approximately 28% of military families left the area during deployments in 2007. That figure has dropped to 21.2% in 2012.
The housing market has also benefited since 2007 when only 10% of soldiers lived in their own homes, to 16.3% of soldiers living in their own homes as of 2012. According to a Fort Drum economic release statement, Fort Drum has impacted the economy in North Country’s Tri-County area by $1.6 billion.