Today, Texas Sen. John Cornyn (R), Army Gen. John “Mike” Murray, and Texas A&M Chancellor John Sharp met in Austin for the announcement of a $65 million cooperative agreement between the Texas A&M University Systems (TAMUS) and the U.S. Army Futures Command (AFC) for the construction of a new military combat development complex.
Named for Texas A&M’s core values of respect, excellence, leadership, loyalty, integrity, and selfless service, the RELLIS Campus will be located on a 2,000-acre plot seven miles from the Texas A&M campus in Bryan.
The $130 million combat development complex will be dually funded by the Texas Legislature and the TAMUS Board of Regents with today’s agreement spending $65 million over a five year period.
TAMUS Board of Regents will pay $80 million for a Research Innovation Center housed within the Innovative Technologies Development Complex (ITDC) at the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) in addition to the allocation of $50 million from the Texas Legislature for the building of an Innovative Proving Ground.
“Army Futures Command is excited to continue our collaboration with various partners in Texas to successfully modernize our Army. The work conducted at TAMUS RELLIS Campus in the coming years will directly impact our Soldiers’ readiness, equipment, and capabilities,” Gen. Murray said of the partnership.
The new combat development complex will feature a hypersonic tunnel, testing grounds for next-generation technologies, and secure networks for data collection and analysis in addition to other research, development, and modernization capabilities.
Describing the alliance as a “huge win for Texans,” Sen. Cornyn, the Senate Majority Whip, said, “This partnership with the Texas A&M University System will ensure we have the best and the brightest working to address rapidly evolving threats and maintain our strategic advantage around the world.”
Announced by Chancellor Sharp in 2016, the Board of Regents authorized funding for the $130 million combat development complex in August 2019 with the support of Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, and Speaker Dennis Bonnen, who advocated for $50 million to be included in the state appropriations bill for the RELLIS Campus.
Construction on the RELLIS Campus is scheduled to begin in November before being completed in June 2021.
Sarah McConnell is a reporter for The Texan. Previously, she worked as a Cyber Security Consultant after serving as a Pathways Intern at the Department of Homeland Security – Citizenship and Immigration Services. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Texas A&M as well as her Master of Public Service and Administration degree from the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M. In her free time, Sarah is an avid runner, jazz enthusiast, and lover of all things culinary.