Roanoke City Leaders Working to Save Historic Compton-Bateman House

Roanoke, VA - They are historic sites that the group Preservation Virginia says are in serious jeopardy.

Monday the group unveiled its 2013 list of Most Endangered sites, including the Manassas Battlefield, Arlington Cemetery and Roanoke's Compton-Bateman House.

The 19th century home pre dates the city by more than 50 years.

With less than a month before a set deadline expires, the 1830's era Compton-Bateman house is getting one final round of exposure. Historians and preservationists both hope will save the property from a potential wrecking ball.

"It certainly does underscore the importance of both the resource and the imminent threat to it; on a statewide level which I think is important," said Alison Blanton with the Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation.

The deadline of May 31st isn't a firm deadline, but it will mark the beginning of a new era for the mansion, as the city is looking to move on the property one way or another.

The former Villa Heights Community Center sits on a hill over the neighborhood, much like the Tayloe Mansion in Jackson Park, on the other side of town. The home, also formerly owned by the city and endangered at one time, was bought by a Richmond family that is currently renovating it.

"We certainly would have hoped that the same thing that happened with the Tayloe House would happen here but that hasn't been the case. But that project is going very well," said Rob Ledger with the City Of Roanoke's Economic Development program.

City leaders want to extend the success to the Compton-Bateman House property as well and they are willing to consider any serious proposal that will get the job done.

"We're asking people as soon as possible to submit a proposal. We're not going to wait much longer than that before decision are made," Ledger said.