Public meeting set for demolition of historic buildings in New River Gorge

UPDATE: Due to a scheduling conflict, the meeting has been moved to Jan. 11. The date and place remain the same.

GLEN JEAN, WV (WOAY) – A few weeks ago, Newswatch broke the news about the National Park Service’s plans to demolish historic but dilapidated buildings in the New River Gorge National Park.

Now, the park service has revealed new details about those plans.

According to a press release, a public input meeting will be held on Jan. 11 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the Bank of Glen Jean in Mount Hope. The public documents are also available here.

The press release also lists the buildings up for demolition. There are a total of 35 buildings on the list, and 21 of them are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Those buildings include the Thurmond Ice House and the Prince Brothers’ General Store. The full list of the structures listed for demolition is at the bottom of this article.

The Park Service says that most of those buildings were never intended for reuse and are now safety hazards and the target for trespassing and vandalism. They were mostly acquired through land acquisition within the park.

This project is part of a larger maintenance plan funded by the Great American Outdoors Act Legacy Restoration Fund. Demolitions are expected to begin as early as fall 2024.

As earlier reported by Newswatch, this project is part of the Park Service’s overall goal to maximize resources efficiently and effectively. By removing buildings that are too far gone or no longer needed, the park says it can better support the more important and historic structures.

At the same time, the Park Service will still work to represent the history of the buildings that do get removed.

“Part of the project includes providing alternative ways to interpret and preserve the history of those structures that have been removed through outdoor exhibits and documentation,” Eve West, chief of interpretation and visitor services at the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, said in a statement shared to WOAY last month.

We are still tracking this story and will bring you updates as we learn more.

The structures considered for removal through this project are:

  • Charles Ashley Garage
  • Charles Ashley Outbuilding
  • May Bagoski House
  • Harold Smith House
  • Wedzel Young House
  • Tom Kelly House
  • Thurmond Ice House
  • McGuffin Garage
  • Erskine Pugh Rental House
  • Philip A McClung/Meadows House
  • Sidney Allen Ward House
  • Thurmond Package Plant
  • James Humphrey Sr. House
  • Marilyn Brown House
  • Dun Glen Building
  • Dun Glen Ark
  • Dun Glen Mini Ark
  • Dun Glen Boat Storage Rack
  • James K Carper Barn
  • Harrah Coal House
  • Harrah Outbuilding #2 Remains
  • Harrah Outbuilding #1
  • Harrah Hen House
  • Harrah Smokehouse
  • Harrah House Remains
  • Harrah Outhouse
  • Prince Brothers’ General Store
  • Brookside Pool Chemical Treatment Building
  • Cochrane Farm Outbuilding #1
  • Cochrane Farm Outbuilding #2
  • James Phillips Storage Building #2
  • James Phillips Farm Shed
  • James Phillips Outbuilding #1
  • James Phillips House
  • Vallandingham House Addition
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