For years, the Christiansburg Recreation Department has used the local armory on College Street for dog obedience classes and other activities. But that will come to a screeching halt next month.
The armory was constructed in 1932, and the town started using the building in 1958. Over the years, the town and Department of Military Affairs (DMA) had amended the working agreement at least two different times with the last being in 1985.
The new agreement, according to town staff, is due to new federal policies regarding armories and other such facilities. “The town will no longer be able to schedule the use and will no longer be responsible for maintenance of the facility or grounds,” Acting Town Manager Randy Wingfield said Tuesday.
Over the past five years, the DMA had expressed safety concerns of the building especially when members of the public were entering on a regular basis for town activities.
Spokesperson Anaika Miller said the town’s relationship with the Department of Military Affairs has been positive and mutually beneficial.
“The town held classes at the National Guard Armory, and, in exchange, maintained the grounds and facility. Town-use of the Armory declined following the openings of the recreation center and the aquatic center, both of which created additional space where town-run classes could be held. For the past several years, we have only held dog obedience classes at the armory,” she said.
In the future, those dog obedience classes will be held at 415 Cambria St. in a building the town purchased from Mayflower Moving to allow a future road access through the Truman Wilson Park from Peppers Ferry Road to Cambria Street. The connector road is on hold as the town continues to plan the park and the entrance road.
The Armory has also been serving as a primary voting precinct, which will have to change. Montgomery County’s Voter Registrar Connie M. Viar hopes to move the polling place in 2018. “Thankfully, the Army allowed us to get through the current year using the Armory as we always have,” she said.