WV Capitol security plan approved - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

WV Capitol security plan approved

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WV Capitol security plan approved WV Capitol security plan approved
CHARLESTON, WV - State officials are adding new security enhancements to Capitol grounds. The Capitol Building Commission agreed Wednesday to have a new fence and limestone wall in place around the Governor’s Mansion.

“The goal here in West Virginia is to maintain the obvious beauty of the campus, while at the same time providing a reasonable sense of security,” said Lawrence Messina, State Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety Spokesman.

The project is the first phase of a perimeter security plan designed by architect GAI Consultants.

The proposed wall will run along Greenbrier Street and Kanawha Boulevard near the governor’s mansion. A wrought-iron fence will be added to the wall in front of the mansion.

Messina said the discussion about protecting public buildings and the people who work in them increased following the September 11th attacks. But some people say there is enough security present at the state capitol.

"There are guards and police that patrol the grounds all hours of the day and night,” said Matt Martin, a Charleston resident.  “There really is no need for extra security."

Officials say it is too early to tell how much the project will cost, but the state has already awarded GAI more than $200,000 for design work.

"I think everybody should be protected, including the Governor and people who work in that building,” said Jessica Jones, a Charleston resident.

“That money could be used for so many other things here in Charleston,” said Martin. “For one they could fix the roads."

State officials say the plan has been in the making for seven years, and they are hopeful it will finally come to fruition.