Historical Preservation of the Edgar A. Long Building
The Edgar A. Long building, named after Principal Edgar A. Long, was built in 1927 and is the last remaining structure from the original 185-acre Christiansburg Institute campus. It features 3 full floors (including the basement) with over 9,000 square feet of usable space.
We envision a restored and operational Edgar A. Long building functioning as a flexible community gathering space and dynamic intergenerational learning center, serving the diverse communities across the New River Valley. Christiansburg Institute Inc (CI Inc) is currently engaged in the process of raising capital funds to preserve and restore the historic Edgar A. Long building.
Intergenerational Learning Center
Through the arts, spaces committed to truth-telling, grassroots community organizing workshops, and multicultural events, the Edgar A. Long building will serve as an immersive intergenerational learning center, fostering civic engagement and community dialogue around issues of racial reconciliation, community needs, and economic justice.
Community Gathering, Commercial Lease, Meeting Space
The Long building will serve as community gathering and meeting space for all community members, local businesses, non profit organizations, artists, and faith communities. With 3,000+ usable square feet spanning each floor (3), the Long building will feature dedicated meeting, commercial lease office, and artist space, with a vision of uniting community leaders, activists, artists, non-profits, and business professionals to address and serve community needs and build community power. The campus will also offer rental space for weddings, family reunions, and recreational activities.
Community Garden and Community Kitchen
In the heart of Montgomery County surrounded by Virginia's beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, the stately Edgar A. Long building stands proudly on 4-acres of land owned by the Christiansburg Institute Alumni Association.
Sharing a meal at table is a cornerstone of many faith and non-faith traditions, fostering fellowship, building bridges of mutual understanding and reconciliation, and deepening our understanding of community in powerful and transformative ways.
Following in these rich and diverse traditions, we envision growing a sustainable community garden, providing locally sourced produce to all community members of the New River Valley. Housed in the Long building will be a community kitchen fully equipped with essential cooking needs. Providing food access to unhoused community members of the New River Valley will be a stated function and objective of the community kitchen.
Immersive Multi-platform Museum
Utilizing innovations in digital technologies, the Long building will include a multi-platform museum exhibit showcasing Christiansburg Institute's material and cultural history, and, more broadly, African American history throughout the South. The multi-platform museum will create a dynamic and immersive learning experience; interactive touch screen learning modules, augmented reality applications designed to take you on a virtual tour of the former 185 acre Christiansburg Institute campus, and display cases containing artifacts from the former school.