Camp Lockett Framework Management Plan
From 1941 to 1944, the US Army purchased 7,000 acres in the Campo area to build Camp Lockett for the cavalry soldiers deployed to guard the rugged and mostly roadless terrain along the US/Mexican border from Otay to El Centro, the San Diego & Arizona Eastern rail line, and local reservoirs. In June 1942, this duty was assigned to the 3,500 African-American soldiers of the 4th Cavalry Brigade. They were known as the Buffalo Soldiers, so named during the Indian Wars of the 1870s. The camp was deactivated in 1944 when it was converted to a wartime convalescent unit. It was returned to civilian use after the war.
The Framework Management Plan (FMP) establishes the guidelines and concepts needed for the development of an historic park at Camp Lockett. In conjunction with the FMP, the County has also nomiated Camp Lockett for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places based on its direct and important association with historical and cultural patterns significant in American history.
As part of the FMP, KTU+A conducted public input workshops, identified opportunities and constraints through the site analysis process, and developed conceptual park plans, design guidelines, and an implementation plan. As a result of the planning efforts, the following goals were identified:
- Permanently preserve the historic resources;
- Preserve, restore or re-create prominent elements of Camp Lockett;
- Protect and interpret historic and cultural resources pre-dating Camp Lockett;
- Develp an approach for integrating privately owned historic resources;
- Preserve and manage the historic native oaks;
- Minimize conflicts with sensitive biological resources;
- Enhance the availability of community amenities;
- Provide over-night stay accommodations;
- Develop facilities suitable for use by large groups (e.g. school tour groups); and
- Provide equestrian facilities to support historic interpretation and recreation.