The city of Frederick has officially endorsed a plan for the National Park Service to consolidate several services at the city’s Westside Regional Park, which is currently under development.
The city’s aldermen voted unanimously Thursday night to approve a resolution of support for the park service’s plans to move its Historic Preservation Training Center and the Harpers Ferry Center Museum Conservation and Collections Facility to the 135-acre park being developed along Butterfly Lane on Frederick’s southern edge.
The resolution was needed for park service staff to seek funding for the project at the professional level, Marc DeOcampo, chief administrative officer for the city, told the aldermen.
If the plan ultimately gets approved, the park service would buy about eight acres of the park.
The Historic Preservation Training Center is currently housed in three locations, with its administrative offices in a building at the Monocacy National Battlefield, its training center and workshops at a building in the city, and its storage facilities at the farmstead on the future site of the Westside Regional Park. The Harpers Ferry Center is currently located in Charles Town, W.V.
The training center has 70 full-time employees, while the Harpers Ferry Center has 15, and the number of total employees at a joint location could increase to 150 employees within the next five years, according to a city staff report.
Adding the project would be good for the city and great for residents, Aldermen Roger Wilson said Thursday.
The aldermen also approved a memorandum of understanding between the city of Frederick and the Frederick Innovative Technology Center Incorporated, a business incubator that seeks to help technology businesses develop.
The agreement requires FITCI to regularly get input from the city, mayor, aldermen, and Department of Economic Development in developing its annual program and provide the city with an an annual report of its activities and finances, among other requirements.
The city will provide FITCI with $50,000 a year over the next three fiscal years, and with “proportional representation on task forces, groups, committees or other city-sanctioned groups which are formed to address issues related to economic development, entrepreneur support, and business incubation,” according to the agreement.