It was cold outside but organizers call it a heart-warming project. The Black Diamond Girl Scout Council broke ground Thursday on their new $6 million headquarters, Volunteer Resource Center and Girl Zone on Charleston’s West Side.

The brand new building will be located on the corner of Virginia Street and Maryland Ave. at the site of the old Moses Auto Dealership.

Susan Thompson, the CEO of the Black Diamond Girl Scout Council, says the new facility will be a major upgrade to 21,000 square feet of space.

“We’re moving from a 14-thousand square foot [building]. So it will give us a lot more room,” Thompson said.

It’s part of a capital campaign project. Mike Walker is the chairman. He says the program is not what you might expect.

“Imagine this is a urban Girl Scout camp versus a rural Girl Scout camp,” Walker said.

Instead of campfires and ghost stories, the girls will be able to explore the “urban jungle.”

“They’ll come to Charleston to experience the Capitol City in a safe place, in an urban environment where they can build upon the Girl Scout framework of teamwork, leadership and problem solving,” Walker explained.

The girls will have access to places like the Clay Center for Arts and Sciences, the state museum, Haddad Riverfront Park and other city locations.

The headquarters will house the Black Diamond Girl Scout Council and it’s 27 employees, meeting rooms and a gift shop. The Girl Zone, a separate building from the headquarters, will include a dormitory and play/learn area.

The price tag isn’t cheap.

“We need a lot of generous folks from all over the state, from all over the council, to step up and make this possible,” Walker said.

Demolition on the existing building is already underway and Thompson says they should be ready to move in to the new facility by November 1.

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  • fred

    Jennifer u need to rewrite this article stating all the budget cuts Black Diamond has made to prop fund this wasted urban campground. Black Diamond has cut employees pay and program hours that will effect the girls themselves. U need to ask the CEO and the few employees under her what they make a hour. U prop are going to be shocked what they make for a non-profit organization.

  • ProudOVMomma

    Why can't we share this story on Facebook? Also, where could one send donations to help make this project possible?