wsls logo

What happened to all of the trees at Interstate 81 and 581?

The Wood Haven Technology Park continues to move forward

The end goal is to have piece of project with a range to offer companies.
The end goal is to have piece of project with a range to offer companies.

There’s a big change to the landscape coming into Roanoke from Interstate 81.

Large swaths of trees were clear cut for the technology park at the juncture of Interstates 81 and 581 off Wood Haven Road in Roanoke County.

There’s been lots of work behind the scenes, but this visual change is the most striking. You can see it from Interstate 81 - the trees have been cut for the future home of the Wood Haven Technology Park.

It’s a joint venture between the local governments as the Western Virginia Regional Industrial Facility Authority. John Hill is the Executive Director and said while some of the trees were cut for Interstate 81 expansion, their property was also cleared.

“So in terms of something we can do to really bring the readiness along and make it more attractive, it’s an obvious choice because it really impacts in terms of the development time frame,” Hull said.

The authority is marketing the site for high-tech, high paying jobs.

“The goal here is really to have a piece of property that accommodates a range in terms of industries but also the size of those users in the end,” Hull said.

The project was announced back in 2016 and Hull said it’s on track. Besides clear-cutting, they’ve graded the land, laid utilities and made other upgrades all in the hopes of attracting someone to develop.

“That’s work that’s supported by the Virginia Business Ready sites program and the site is going to progress to the highest level of readiness of that program which will increase its marketability,” Hull said.

Hull added that they’ve run down some leads for interested parties, but said he was unable to share more details. While we may not see another major visual change soon, they continue to shop it around.

“It could happen at any point, the likelihood of it happening increases and we increase the marketability and the readiness of that property,” Hull said.