Developers discuss future vision for Central Virginia Training Center

Leaders want to create an urban hub

Developers are now more than a decade ahead of schedule

AMHERST COUNTY, Va. – Bringing new life to the Central Virginia Training Center seemed to be a daunting task after the facility closed permanently in 2020.

On Wednesday morning, local leaders met in Amherst County to discuss the redevelopment plan, showing their vision and explaining how it’s all possible.

“The $25 million at the time seemed impossible,” said Virginia Sen. Steve Newman.

Many were interested in the 350 acres, but no one wanted to buy something with millions of dollars of debt on it.

With the help of local leaders, like Senator Newman, the General Assembly decided to take care of that in the budget, putting developers at least 14 years ahead of schedule.

“It’s going to be tough and it’s going to be expensive,” he said. “It won’t be something that is done necessarily overnight, but it it one that I think we’re all committed to.”

Senator Newman added in October Amherst County will get the title to the center.

It’s up to them and the Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance to decide what will go in its place, and they’ve already got a pretty good idea.

“Our region has a unique opportunity,” said Megan Lucas, CEO of the Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance. “We can create a vision for this site that can change the future of our region. It is in our hands.”

Leaders want to create an urban hub — a place for shopping, dining, housing, office space, walkways, businesses and so much more.

Master plan for redevelopment (wsls)

The goal is to connect the county with the city and be a first-choice community for talent and employers.

“Things are great in Amherst County and they’re getting better,” said Dean Rodgers, county administrator.

Leaders hope the sale of the land will take care of demolition costs. While they will tear down the 98 buildings, they plan to save the cupola and create an image park to remember the center’s history.

There’s also been some concern over what will happen to the two cemeteries on the property. Leaders say they will not be touched and families will still be able to visit the ones they’ve lost.

About the Author:

Kortney joined the 10 News team as a Lynchburg Bureau Reporter in May 2021.