Wilderness Battlefield Gateway Study
Concepts for Preservation and Economic Development

Overview: Hill Studio and our partner consultants, Clue Group and VHB, provided strategic planning, economic and land development direction to implement and manage economic development initiatives while preserving the significant historic, cultural and natural resources of eastern Orange County, Virginia. The study followed an unsuccessful development scenario and emotional legal battle involving a big-box retailer that threatened contributing resources of the 3,100-acre Wilderness Battlefield and elicited a national campaign from Civil War enthusiasts and preservationists.

The Study serves as a blueprint model for other communities illustrating the effective integration of planning, preservation, and economic development in land development decisions using consensus building, creative community design/ development approaches, and local, regional and national citizen and governmental partnerships.

Study Partners: Civil War Trust, National Trust for Historic Preservation, National Park Service -Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, NPS - National Battlefield Protection Program, National Parks Conservation Association, Friends of Wilderness Battlefield, and Piedmont Environmental Council.

Location: Orange County, Virginia

Wilderness Battlefield Gateway Study (PDF)