West Virginia Commercial managed Veterans Square, a national historic landmark, on behalf of McCabe Land Company. Management of the facility includes day-to-day operations and maintenance, accounting, and leasing. Veterans Square has a strategic location on the main street of Fairmont entering through the gateway connector from the nearby interstate I-79 that is only five minutes away. Veterans Square is the only large class A building in downtown Fairmont and an excellent location for tenants large and small. Current major tenants include Pierpont Community College and state government agencies.
McCabe Land Company initiated this major redevelopment project in the downtown Fairmont Historic District through a public-private partnership with the City of Fairmont and a local veterans group. The Veterans Square development project was made possible by McCabe Land Company’s purchase of the 63,000 SF former G.C. Murphy Company Building. The redevelopment project created a mixed-use facility featuring a street-level memorial plaza with green space, a community amphitheater, and metered parking; a lower-level parking garage; and a historic rehabilitation of the Murphy Building into an office building. This project was crucial to the revitalization of Fairmont’s downtown business district.
The firm that undertook the work on Veterans Square and Veterans Plaza, Blackwood Associates, was honored by the West Virginia Society of Architects. “They awarded design awards in three projects,” James Blackwood said. “But then they recognized Veterans’ Plaza from the effort put forth by the architect because of its complexity. They came back and awarded Blackwood Associates for exceptional civic engagement.”
Blackwood stated that. “This wasn’t an overnight project and the judges understood that. It was nine years from the first day we started until the dedication. And I did the work at no charge to veterans.” Blackwood further explained that “it’s good when your peers can look at a project and see the effort that has gone into it. They were very impressed with what had been done on that corner.” Blackwood said this gave him an opportunity to discuss “how much we owe our veterans and the fast rate that the World War II and Korean War veterans are passing away. Anything any of us can do to recognize their efforts is certainly worthwhile.”
West Virginia Commercial has been a major player in the redevelopment of downtown Fairmont through its management of several properties, including Veterans Square and the Hennen Building. Plans are underway to renovate the former Ray’s Jeweler’s space for a future tenant. In 2015, a small storefront next to the Hennen Building was sold through West Virginia Commercial and is soon set to open as retail clock repair shop. West Virginia Commercial is proud of its ability to work with clients and tenants of all sizes, whether they need 10,000 square feet or 250 square feet.