UAS park could spark industry growth

By: Kevin Bonham, Grand Forks Herald

Grand Forks leaders could know by August whether a proposed unmanned aircraft systems campus will fly at Grand Forks Air Force Base.

That’s when Grand Forks County and the regional Base Realignment Impact Committee should know whether the Defense Department will negotiate a needed land lease.

“The goal on this is to get this lease process moving forward enough so that the Air Force feels comfortable enough to say, ‘OK, now let’s negotiate terms of what that lease might be,’” said county Commissioner John Schmisek, who chairs BRIC.

BRIC and state officials already are talking with several major UAS companies about leasing property at the proposed UAS campus.