Over the weekend of June 6th 2014, Coopers Rock State Forest, located just a short drive from LDG’s Morgantown WV branch office, held their 24th annual Celebration of the Outdoors, sponsored by the Coopers Rock Foundation (CRF). As part of this celebration, LDG was on site to present their vision of the proposed Grand Entrance Gateway design that was commissioned to LDG by the CRF earlier this year.
After working closely with the CRF foundation board, LDG’s finalized design concept closely replicates the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) era gateway that welcomed visitors to the park until the construction of I-68, at which time all remnants of the structure were lost. Maintaining the CCC tradition seen in construction elsewhere throughout the forest, the design incorporates the use of raw, natural materials, many of which will be sourced by regional vendors to help reduce the resources and costs associated with shipping construction materials.
Additionally, all proposed landscape planting includes native species that would naturally be found within the forest such as Rhododendron, Mountain Laurel, and Serviceberry, allowing a seamless transition from the constructed elements of the gateway to the surrounding forest landscape.
Though still in the early phases, this project received an overwhelmingly positive response from not only the Forest and CRF but the public as well. With the amount of public interest expressed at the Celebration of the Outdoors, the CRF is pushing full steam ahead to acquire the necessary funding and permissions to help this vision become a reality that would provide a long-term identity to Coopers Rock State Forest for years to come.