WHEELING, W.VA. (WTRF)- You may recall the halls of the old Ohio Valley Medical Center that closed a few years ago. But now the building is coming back to life as new tenants and businesses are moving on in.
“It’s been very beneficial for us to relocate our code enforcement officials and our Parks and Rec Department and hopefully in the future, other agencies will rent space in this building as well,” said Assistant City Manager Bill Lanham.
“Here we’re able to have substantial space, different areas that we can store stuff. Possibly have a few programs here once covid is over and we’re able to spread out a little more in here and then our offices we were able to start making them how we wanted them,” said Rochelle Barry, Director of Parks and Recreation.
Helping Heroes out of Moundsville will be the next group to move in. And this organization has roots deep within the community.
“They serve veterans throughout the Ohio Valley, mainly in the northern panhandle with three quarters of their population are here in the OV and Wheeling. Those are the clients that they serve and so it’s a veterans organization founded by veterans and operated by veterans in affiliation with the veteran’s administration,” said Lanham.
It’s still in the works, but Helping Heroes has big plans for their space in the old building.
“What their goal is for the HillCrest building, the second floor is to put a transitional living out there to start out with five units and that will give homeless vets, vets that are having issues and their families, and opportunity, instead of being out on the streets, to have a nice warm place to go. To get the resources and help they need to get them back into society and help them to with permanent housing,” said Lanham.
Those who have moved into the old building can only envision what this area of Wheeling once looked like. And it’s the city’s goal to recreate that vision.
“I’m sure there was a lot of life and activity and a lot of jobs and that’s one thing we are trying to restore and rejuvenate and bring back to Wheeling. We want those jobs back into the city. We want those jobs local for our residents and the Ohio Valley,” said Lanham.