Tens of thousands of soldiers passed through Camp Atterbury each year when the post was still mobilizing them to go to Iraq and Afghanistan, and that meant an economic boost for local businesses.
Higher-ranking officers or civilian contractors sometimes stayed in nearby hotels and ate at local restaurants. Soldiers got bused up every week to the Walmart store in Franklin.
An Indiana University study found that the southern Johnson County military installation and the Muscatutuck Center for Complex Operations pumped an estimated $400 million into the local economy last year, when the mobilization mission was already winding down. To put that number in perspective, Camp Atterbury likely contributes more to the local economy than most other institutions in Johnson County, said Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs professor Barry Rubin said.