Harpers Ferry’s commercial district is recovering faster than expected after a devastating fire caused millions of dollars in damages.
Demolition began about two weeks ago on the four buildings in Harpers Ferry’s commercial district. The buildings housed nine businesses. Debris is being moved by hand to protect what’s left of the historic structures.
Harpers Ferry Mayor, Gregory Vaughn, says he anticipates most of the debris will be moved out by the first of the year, and he says the building owners should have permits by February to begin rebuilding.
In September, the West Virginia University Extension Service decided to aid the town. Mayor Vaughn says Harpers Ferry wouldn’t be where it is now in its recovery process without the agency's help. Vaughn is especially grateful to WVU President Gordon Gee, who, Vaughn says, played an important role in making services available.
The fire started on July 23 around 3:18 in the morning. It took roughly eight hours to contain the fire. At this time, the cause is still under investigation.