Staunton’s West End Revitalization
Plunkettsville: Exploring Story Maps to illustrate historic buildings and character of the Staunton West End neighborhood
HSF’s priority is to Illuminate the potential for adaptive reuse and rehabilitation – a sustainable and proven revitalization strategy. HSF’s first focused effort in the West End is mapping and recording architecture in the historic area known as Plunketsville.
Using StoryMap allows HSF to:
- Record the architectural characteristics of the West End
- Help all involved understand the historical development of the area
- Create a web based, illustrated inventory for all to use.
The Plunkettsville StoryMap: JMU Public History student Grace Gordon has done an incredible job creating the Plunkettsville StoryMap, right. We believe this digital map will be a fun and engaging resource – especially for residents of the West End. This was a Mary Bishop Carter Internship project (see below).
The Mary Bishop Carter Internship Program
Preserving Staunton’s Heritage: Based in HSF’s Preservation Workroom, student interns help further the community’s understanding of its rich architectural character. Developed for and presented on the HSF website, internship projects enhance access to important information facilitating preservation of architectural resources.
Funding the Program: Supported by a generous donation from Henley Carter, HSF established The Mary Bishop Carter Intern Fund in the spring of 2021. Additional support is provided through the Community Grants Program from the Community Foundation of the Central Blue Ridge. Read more »
Revitalization Concepts to Consider
Our initial photo survey and review of historical maps indicates that Plunkettsville includes vernacular homes, pattern book and mail order homes, early auto gas stations, and historic commercial warehouses. The West Beverley streetscape suffers from inconsistent planning, over widening, and visual clutter. There is great potential for better integration with pedestrians and the neighborhood.
Urban planning research indicates:
Adaptive reuse of existing buildings in Older Neighborhoods is critical.
A report by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Partnership for Building Reuse and the Urban Land Institute indicates:
- Mapping tools and spatial analysis should be used to develop and target incentive programs to have the most impact in neighborhoods with older resources.
Research by Place Economics indicates:
- Older and Historic neighborhoods are the key to Smart Growth.
- Providing basic protection of older neighborhoods is an easy sustainable development strategy
- The use of older, existing pre-1960 housing stock must be a central component of an affordable housing strategy.