Battlefield Planning

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Wise Preservation Planning LLC
      1480 Hilltop Road
      Chester Springs PA 19425
      Phone (484) 202-8187
 

Wise Preservation Planning LLC is a full-service historic preservation planning firm. We research, document, analyze and ultimately help protect historic resources and our cultural landscape. Our firm serves a variety of clients, including municipalities, engineers, architects, historical societies, and owners of historic resources.

The firm was founded in 1997 by Robert J. Wise Jr., who has 20 years of experience in the historic preservation field. He is assisted by Seth Hinshaw, Senior Planner, who has been with the firm since 2001. Both planners have M.S. degrees in historic preservation from the University of Pennsylvania and exceed the 36 CFR 61 Professional Qualification Standards established by the National Park Service for architectural historians.

Brandywine Battlefield

When Robert Wise was Senior Planner, Historic Preservation, with the Brandywine Conservancy, the Conservancy became one of the founding members of the Brandywine Battlefield Task Force. The Task Force also consists of representatives from local and county governments, the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office, and the National Park Service. Founded in 1993, the Task Force meets regularly to achieve its goals of battlefield protection, research, interpretation, education, and stewardship. The Battle of the Brandywine (September 11, 1777) was one of the largest and most significant battles of the Revolutionary War. Part of the "Philadelphia Campaign" which concluded with the encampment in Valley Forge, it opened the path for the British to occupy Philadelphia. The battle covered 10 square miles in Chester and Delaware Counties. In 1961, the Battlefield was declared a National Historic Landmark.
 
Today, the Task Force is actively seeking to protect the site of the battle, struggling against suburban sprawl. In 1989, a comprehensive study was completed identifying the challenges, and soon thereafter the Task Force was created. Mr. Wise helped the Initiative prioritize properties based on battle action, integrity, viewshed, and potential for development. Armed with this information, the Brandywine Conservancy, as administrator for the Initiative, set about contacting property owners, cultivating relationships, and exploring land protection strategies tailored to their specific needs. The Task Force's main preservation effort is the Brandywine Battlefield Conservation Easement Initiative, a program created by Mr. Wise and the B.C.
 
Through the years, the Task Force has used the Initiative to solicit financial support from several sources, including the American Battlefield Protection Program (NPS), state and county land preservation programs, private foundations, and the Patriot Act, a funding bill the U.S. Congress passed in 1999. Over 400 acres of the battlefield's most critical properties have been permanently protected.
 
Note: Robert Wise is no longer on the Task Force but consults with Task Force members on issues facing the Brandywine Battlefield.
 

Munfordville Battlefield (Kentucky)

In 2001-2 Robert Wise served on a project team with JMA Associates to assess the Munfordville Battlefield and develop an action plan for its preservation. The Battles for Munfordville took place in 1861 and 1862 when Confederate forces sought to take control of a strategic railroad bridge over the Green River in an effort to disrupt Union supply lines in central Kentucky. In the 1990s, as a result of development in and around the battlefield, and considerations for the town of Munfordville’s economic and tourism potential, JMA and Wise were hired to develop a plan to preserve the battlefield's most important landscapes and features while integrating the battlefield with a proposed visitor’s center.
 
The project team field-surveyed the battlefield in its entirety, identified its most significant properties, identified properties that were most threatened by development, and developed a preservation plan to acquire these properties. Many of the plan elements have yet to be implemented at the time of this writing.