For nearly 80 years, the U.S. Forest Service used the grounds and 17 buildings on its 6.4 acre property in downtown Twisp to carry out forest management work.
When the Forest Service announced that it would auction the property, a dream was born: To turn the “Forest Service complex” into a place that would benefit the whole community.
To accomplish this vision, in 2008 the Twisp Public Development Authority was chartered by the Town of Twisp to acquire and develop the property, now known as TwispWorks. In 2014, ownership of most of the campus transferred to the non-profit TwispWorks Foundation.
1929 and 1936: The U.S. Forest Service purchased the two parcels that would become the Twisp District headquarters, in what was then the Chelan National Forest. Total purchase price: $2,500.
1930s: Several houses, the Bunkhouse, the “Road Shop” and the North and South warehouses were constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The complex housed work crews and firefighting operations.
1994: The Twisp and Winthrop ranger districts were combined and the district headquarters moved to Winthrop.
2007: The USFS announced that it would auction the complex as surplus property.
2007-2008:Local citizens formed a task force, and conducted a feasibility study to determine whether the community could purchase and run the site. The answer was YES.
2008: The Town of Twisp chartered the Twisp Public Development Authority to acquire, redevelop, restore and manage the property.
2009: Through a generous commitment of $1 million from an anonymous community member, the Twisp PDA purchased the site.
2009-2010: Hundreds of community members contributed ideas and expertise to help create a 10-year master plan for the site.
2010: The campus became known as TwispWorks, and the Twisp PDA began seeking partners to occupy the site and create programs here.
2014: Ownership of the campus transferred to the TwispWorks Foundation.