Town Meeting Review

On July 24th at the Appell Center’s Capitol Theatre, the History Center held a Town Meeting to bring the community up to date on our Steam Plant project and to offer time for questions and comments. For this week’s post, we’re reviewing some of the questions asked, along with answers, and pointing you to the video we took during our Facebook Live stream during the event. Hopefully you’ll get one of your questions answered or learn something new about this exciting project.

Q: First things first: where will I park when I come to visit the new museum, library & archives?

A: As seen on the accompanying rendering, there will be ample free spaces for regular and handicapped parking, as well as room for school buses transporting students to our venue! This will be a vast improvement over our current situation!

Q: How will staffing be impacted by this move?

A: That’s a question we can’t fully answer at this moment in time. At this point, we are only about 25% of the way through the architectural design, and much work still needs to be done around how the building will be used, the content, programming, and exhibit design. Until that process is closer to completion, we won’t know how—or if—staffing will change.

Q: Speaking of exhibit design and the museum visitor, it is clear that students AND adults remember more and learn better when they can experience history vs. just listening to a lecture or looking at artifacts in a case. How will you change the way that visitors consume the vibrant history of York County?

A: Visitors DO want to experience a real connection to history, and we will make that happen through storytelling, interactive exhibits, and technology that inspires. Check out the artist’s rendering on this page for a look at how this might translate visually.

Q: How will you mitigate the potential for flooding, with the proximity to the Codorus Creek? A: The Steam Plant does sit in a 500 year flood plain. After Hurricane Agnes in the early 1970s, city storm draining was improved along with the Codorus creek itself to mitigate the risk of flooding in downtown York. With that said, at this point in the building’s design, the first floor will be positioned approximately 2 feet higher than the current ground level of the building, further reducing the risk of flooding of the new History Center Museum Library & Archives.

Q: What will happen to Bonham House?
A: Operations of the Bonham House and Fire Museum will remain the same through opening of the new History Center Museum at the Steam Plant. Once we complete the Steam Plant project, we will evaluate the Bonham House and Fire Museum.

Q: What is the status of Lafayette Plaza and how will it impact the project?
A: Lafayette Plaza is currently owned by the York City General Authority. Although community discussions with various organizations and stakeholders regarding the long-term future of Lafayette Plaza have taken place especially in light of the Heritage Rail Trail’s future expansion, no major decisions have been made. The History Center is focused on completing the Steam Plant project and creating a history campus with the Steam Plant and Colonial Complex. Lafayette Plaza does not specifically impact our goals to create a new history campus.

Q: Your capital campaign is now in the Public Phase. Can I designate a donation to my favorite History Center department, program, or a physical element of the project?
A: Yes! You may designate your gift in many ways, including naming opportunities for many facets of the new History Center. For information on the possibilities, contact Terri Altland, Director of Development, at, or call (717) 848-1587, ext. 216.

If you’d like to watch the Facebook Live video of the Town Meeting, the link is  HERE.  If you have further questions about the project or the capital campaign, please contact Joan Mummert, President & CEO, at or (717) 848-1587, ext. 217.





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