Biggest gets bigger: Army’s biggest training post expanding

FILE - U.S. Army Sgt. Cornelius Trammell, clears a hurdle in 2011 as he demonstrates one of the elements of the Army’s new Combat Readiness Test, at Fort Jackson, in Columbia, S.C.. The Army plans to add another battalion to Fort Jackson.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The Army’s biggest basic training post is getting bigger by adding another battalion that will be training an additional 2,000 recruits by 2018.

Post commanders tell The State newspaper that the post is adding the battalion in October of 2017. That will mean an additional 500 recruits trained during each 10-week basic training cycle.

Fort director of operations Lt. Col. James Allen says about 44,000 recruits are now trained at the Columbia fort and that number will increase to 46,000 by 2018.

The expansion will also mean 210 new permanent jobs for drill sergeants and support personnel.

Fort Jackson now trains 54 percent of all Army recruits and 61 percent of all female recruits.