Friction between the Pikes Peak region’s five military bases and neighbor could be eased by a study aimed at influencing future land use decisions, leaders say.

The Joint Land Use Study conducted by the Pikes Peak Area Council of Government using federal grant money examines issues from noise and traffic to schools and cultural needs. It has started with an online community survey that wraps up May 31.

"What makes it super important right now is the public input," said Angela Essing, who is running the study for the council.

The study was spurred by community concerns over noise from Air Force Academy training planes and has grown into a look at all the bases in the region. The basic problem is what community leaders call growth and the military calls encroachment.

When bases were built in Colorado Springs starting with World War II, the military facilities were separated from neighborhoods by vast tracts of open land. Now, with the Pikes Peak region’s population pushing 700,000, the military has a lot more neighbors.

Andy Merritt, who heads military programs for the Colorado Springs Regional Business Alliance said the council’s study could help alleviate neighborhood and Pentagon concerns.

"It’s really about that integration of military needs and community needs," he said.

The land use needs of military bases in the Pikes Peak region have been a top…

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