The US Army Garrison, Fort Detrick, delivers Army baseline
services to sustain vital national missions and Service Members."
History and General Information
Originally named Detrick Field in 1931, the airfield previously operated as an emergency airfield route and served as a Cadet Pilot Training Center. In 1943, the aviation operations were terminated and the facility was renamed Camp Detrick. The facility expanded between 1946 and 1952 with new land purchases and facility construction and was later renamed Fort Detrick in 1956.
Fort Detrick is home to the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command (MDRC) located in Frederick, Maryland, and includes the 136-acre Forest Glen Annex in Silver Spring. Current work at MRDC includes biomedical research and development, medical material management, and pathogen studies aimed at ensuring the health and safety of our military forces as they are stationed and deployed around the world. The expertise in these areas provides the disease and injury treatment and mitigation capabilities that the Army needs for preparedness and success on the battlefield. MRDC is the only organization solely focused on the research and development needed to address the military's unique medical readiness requirements. Fort Detrick also hosts an array of health research, logistics, and communication services that support the safety and health of the nation, including major cancer and infectious disease research and development capabilities.
Since 1999, the Forest Glen Annex has been home to the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, a direct reporting unit of MRDC, Naval Medical Logistics Command, and other smaller units. In accordance with the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) recommendations, the Annex assumed authority over Walter Reed Army Medical Center's Forest Glen section and also became home to the National Museum of Health and Medicine. Originally the home to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the U.S. Army acquired the land during World War II. The Forest Glen Annex has been under the command of Fort Detrick since 2008.
Fort Detrick supports five cabinet-level agencies: The Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Veteran Affairs, Department of Agriculture, Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Health and Human Services. Within the DoD, Fort Detrick supports elements of all four military services. Major Department of Army mission partners include the US Army Medical Research and Development Command and the 21st Signal Brigade. The Fort is the largest employer in Frederick City and County.
Forest Glen Annex – Fort Detrick
Compatible Use Organization, Programs, and Resources
For more information on how Fort Detrick works with surrounding communities to build strong and mutually beneficial relationships, you can explore compatible use organizations, programs, and resources.
Community Resources to Promote Compatibility
Military installations and their host communities have strong and mutually beneficial relationships. They rely on and support one another in terms of jobs, housing, schools, recreation, infrastructure, and social services. Communication, coordination, and partnerships that support compatible community development can create mutually beneficial results to ensure support for warfighters and their families, military operations, and continued community growth and economic development.
Containment Lab Community Advisory Committee (CLCAC) addresses public health
and safety associated with the planning, design, construction, operation, and
disposition of biosafety containment laboratories in Frederick County and the
City of Frederick. It also facilitates two-way communication between the community
and laboratories. The CLCAC advises and makes recommendations regarding opportunities
to improve or mitigate current or future laboratory issues that could impact
public health and safety. Interested parties can apply to be a part of the seven
member CLCAC and are appointed by elected officials from Frederick County and
the City of Frederick. Elected representatives from the City of Frederick and
Frederick County serve as ex-officio members and federal laboratory liaisons
also support the CLCAC.
View an introductory video about the CLCAC.
Counties and municipalities develop comprehensive plans to provide a long-term
vision for their future growth and development. Comprehensive plans typically
include maps showing proposed future land uses and anticipated transportation
and community facilities, and emphasize sustainability, as well as protection
of environmental features, and historical and cultural resources.
As a leading employer and presence in the City of Frederick, efforts are
underway through the city's comprehensive planning process to consider future
goals and needs of Fort Detrick and incorporate them in the
City of Frederick's Comprehensive Plan.
While comprehensive plans in Maryland do not require a military element,
many plans for jurisdictions around Fort Detrick include references to the installation
and consider potential influences on the community. Fort Detrick is referenced
in the following comprehensive plans:
City of Frederick (2020)
Fort Detrick is cited throughout the introduction as Frederick City's
Environmental Sustainability Chapter incorporates Fort Detrick Area
B Ground Water Superfund Site into the discussion of
soil, bedrock, and groundwater contamination and outlines cooperation
between the Army and the City on cleanup efforts. Fort Detrick Area
B Groundwater was placed on the National Priorities List in 2009 due
to the nature of contamination and proximity to surrounding communities.
More information on the background and cleanup efforts for Area B can
be found on the
Environmental Protection Agency's webpage for Area B.
Fort Detrick is recognized as a federal partner and is integrated
into implementation strategies throughout many of the Land Use policy
The following is a link to an additional comprehensive plan for the area
immediately surrounding Fort Detrick:
Economic Resources to Promote Compatibility
A jurisdiction's economic development office and support organizations offer a variety of resources that help the community seek out economic growth opportunities and strengthen existing businesses. These resources are particularly valuable for defense communities who are continually looking for ways to attract new business, retain a skilled workforce, and provide resources and opportunities for military families relocating to the area.
Fort Detrick generates 66,409 direct, indirect, and induced jobs as a result of its operations in Frederick
and the surrounding region. This includes the military, civilian, and contractor
employees responsible for carrying out the installation's mission and the employment
opportunities generated by local spending on goods and services by the workforce.
For a breakdown of employment type by installation, refer to the installation's
economic impact analysis sheet.
According to the
FY 2021 Economic Impact of Maryland's Military Installations and the Associated Defense Ecosystem, prepared
by the Maryland Department of Commerce, the
annual economic output for Fort Detrick (sum of direct, indirect, and induced
impacts) is $11.2B, with a total employee compensation of $5.7B. Fort Detrick supports the third-largest output and employee compensation
impacts compared to Maryland's other installations.
The Fort Detrick
Alliance (Alliance) was founded in 2003 as a non-profit organization. According
to the Alliance's mission statement, its primary purpose is to facilitate “communication
and understanding between Federal agencies at Fort Detrick and the community
at large.” The Alliance works to build relationships between Fort Detrick and
its regional constituencies: individuals, businesses, civic, social, and educational
organizations, and local and state government entities.
The Alliance strives to create long-term economic growth throughout Frederick
and Maryland. It is a federal and community partnership that is a liaison to
the many agencies at Fort Detrick: Department of Defense, Department of Homeland
Security, Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and Human Services,
and Department of Veterans Affairs.
The Alliance facilitates communication among community partners, including
economic development, military, and defense business representatives and the
community at large. This is to ensure long-term viability and support for Fort
Detrick and an opportunity to identify neighborhood compatibility concerns.
The Alliance connects local business members to tenant agencies at Fort Detrick
and other organizations that do business with Fort Detrick.
The Frederick County Office of Economic Development works to increase the
overall economic health of the County by attracting new businesses in targeted
industries and supplying the necessary resources for existing businesses to
The county recognizes biosciences as a key industry and strives to take advantage
of the workforce and education opportunities that Fort Detrick brings to the
area. Frederick County, in conjunction with the City of Frederick and the state
of Maryland offer incentives for biotechnology and life sciences industries.
More information can be found on the
The Defense Studies Institute hosts the
Small Business Contracting Information and Assistance resource page that
provides small business opportunities and defense contracting information. This
includes current procurement support requirements at Fort Detrick, as well as
subcontracting and supplier/vendor opportunities with prime defense contractors.
This resource also hosts guidebooks that explain how to bid on contracts at
military bases, subcontract with a prime defense contractor, and effectively
market to military bases.
The National Capital Region Transportation
Planning Board (TPB) is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization
(MPO) for the region, playing an important role as the forum for regional transportation
planning. With participation from the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia
departments of transportation and the region's local governments, the TPB prepares
intermediate-range and long-range plans and programs that permit federal transportation
funds to flow to the metropolitan Washington region. The TPB also works to advance
safety, land use coordination, and inform the work of decision makers. The TPB
is housed at and staffed by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments
One of the TPB's requirements is to produce a Transportation Improvement
Plan (TIP) that describes the planned schedule over the course of a six-year
period during which federal, state, and local funds for state and local transportation
projects will be distributed. Notably, in the
FY 2021-2024 approved TIP,
MDOT's US15/US40 Frederick Freeway Highway Reconstruction project is listed
for funding. This project would widen the existing roadway and add capacity
to the main arterial that provides access to Fort Detrick.
FY 2021 Economic Impact of Maryland's Military Installations and the Associated Defense Ecosystem. Maryland Department of Commerce. FY 2021 Economic Impact of Maryland's Military Installations and the Associated Defense Ecosystem.