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seicer

[Harpers Ferry]

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Charles Town votes against annexation of Civil War site

Key --

1. Approved 3-2 by the city's planning commission (recommendation to approve the annexation), but the annexation voted down 4-3 yesterday by the council.

"The property was the site of an 1862 battle in which Confederate Maj. Gen. Thomas "Stonewall'' Jackson won the surrender of some 12,500 Union troops, said Don Campbell, superintendent of Harpers Ferry National Historic Park."

Article information: "Charles Town votes against annexation of Civil War site, by The Associated Press, Tuesday April 03, 2007"

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I hate to think of Harpers Ferry being transformed into a concrete jungle. The town is attractive, and I don't doubt the considerable pressure landowners must be getting from developers who would carpet the land with townhouse developments. Is there much local resistance to this?

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Old quarry project moves to county after city rejects proposal

Note: This is a continuation of a thread at UrbanPlanet, but it is something of note since there are abandoned buildings and etc. that were unknown to me until today's article... with photograph.

Key --

1. Abandoned buildings and burnt limestone lie on part of a proposed high-tech business park. Old Standard Quarry would become part of a 638-acre business development although it lies adjacent to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park.

2. It was rejected by the Charles Town planning commission, so the developers are now fishing around, attempting to get it approved.

3. It was to be part of the U.S. fish and Wildlife Service -- as a training facility, in the late 1980s, but the idea was abandoned because of the cost. In 2002, the NPS excluded the quarry site from expansion consideration.

Article information: "Old quarry project moves to county after city rejects proposal, By BETH HENRY, Journal, 4/13/2007"

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Old quarry up for rezoning

Notes --

1. Plans for a new development on the Old Standard Quarry property moved forward Thursday when the Jefferson County commissioners agreed to send a rezoning petition (by the developers) to the county's planning board. A public hearing will be held.

2. The development, south of US 340, will include a 60,000 sq. ft. "signature" office structure, a 150-room hotel that has a 22,500 sq. ft. conference center, additional office buildings along the property's lake and the Shenandoah River, and 20 acres of park land.

3. There is much opposition to the project, as it could threaten Civil War battlefields and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. The project is also too far away from Harpers Ferry.

4. The quarry was active from the 1880s through 1970s.

Article information: "Old quarry up for rezoning, By BETH HENRY, Journal [Martinsburg], 4/27/2007"

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Hotel and Offices Coming to Quarry Site?

A proposal to build a 150 room hotel, conference center and office space may be closer to reality than many would believe. While I don't think the idea of a new hotel in Harpers Ferry is an entirely bad idea, I do think the location chosen for this one is terrible. This would damage almost any view from the park. The powers that be in Harpers Ferry would do well to remember what makes it such a special place. Rampant development could have it looking like Manassas in a nanosecond.

Perservation Magazine Online

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Old battleground host to new fight over ground

By CHRIS BROWN, The Journal [Martinsburg], July 03, 2007

On Friday, June 29, the National Park Service invited county commissioners, area politicians, and quarry project developers to tour the areas in the park whose views would possibly be affected if the former Old Standard Quarry is re-zoned for commercial development. The terrain of Bolivar Heights and School House Ridge on the property was key to General Stonewall Jackson's strategy during the Civil War Battle of Harpers Ferry. But the developer argued with the NPS several times over which route Jackson would have taken during the battle, and just how significant or pristine the terrain was in relation to the history of the area.

The NPS believes that the development and scale -- at 2.3 million sq. ft. -- would be disruptive to the view and integrity of the park. The developers have stated they do not plan on building above the tree canopy, so there would be no damage to the park.

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History wins over development near Harpers Ferry

Herald-Dispatch [Huntington], July 19, 2007

Historic preservation groups were claiming victory after local officials rejected the rezoning of more than 400 acres of abandoned quarry property Thursday that is adjacent to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. The vote was 3-2 against any commercial development on the Old Standard Quarry site. The developer, Old Standard LLC, wanted to construct low-rise office structures, a 150-room hotel, and a 22,500 sq. ft. conference center on the property.

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Byrd on board for preservation of battlefield

By BOB ZIMBEROFF, The Journal, September 26, 2007

Senator Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) has joined along the ranks of a battle preservation group's efforts to call on the National Park Service to conduct a study of the Battle of Shepherdstown. Announced on September 12, just eight days before the 145th anniversary of the Civil War battle that occurred Sept. 20, 1862 and which closed the fighting of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee

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