Category Archives: Naco

Group eyes ways to capitalize on Naco’s history

[Source: Laura Ory, Bisbee Daily Review] — Naco may be the only community that can claim mammoth kill sites, historic military buildings and a golf course. Its history is what many are hoping to capitalize on for future development projects. About 30 “stakeholders,” including Naco residents, school board members, local and county government officials, college and university students and faculty, and many others met for a Camp Naco community planning meeting Saturday at Naco Elementary School. Though getting local residents involved in community projects has been an ongoing problem, said some Naco residents, none present were apathetic about Naco’s future at the meeting.

“Our goal is coming up with a sustainable development master plan for the Naco area that incorporates the historical, cultural and natural resources of the area,” said Brooks Jeffrey, a professor and associate dean of the University of Arizona College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. By including the community and a diverse group of stakeholders, they hope to create a plan with broad support. “We want to avoid planning in isolation and instead plan holistically,” Jeffrey said. Among those brainstorming ideas at the meeting was JoAnn Armenta, a Clean Cities coordinator for the U.S. Department of Energy. She hopes the community will be able to incorporate alternative and sustainable energy practices. “So when we do develop, we develop green,” she said.

[Note: To read the full article, click here. Pictured: Historic Camp Naco.]

Naco visionaries banking on community’s rich history

[Source: Ted Morris, Herald/Review] — This tiny border community is full of possibilities when it comes to tourism and other recreational attractions. Mexican Revolution. Buffalo Soldiers. Civilian Conservation Corps. Mammoth kill site. Port of entry. RVs. Golf. “It’s got it all,” said Rebecca Orozco, the director of Cochise College’s Center for Lifelong Learning. Orozco is one of the organizers of this coming Saturday’s planning charrette for the Naco community. “Anyone interested in Naco’s future” is invited to attend. Billed as a “ ‘roll-up-the-sleeves’ participatory design process,” the charrette will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Naco Elementary School, 1911 W. Valenzuela St.

“Charrette,” a French word for “cart” or “chariot,” is a term that was used by architecture students in Paris in the 19th century who worked intensely, up to the last minute, even as they rode in carts to their design presentations. In the summer of 2006, Bisbee underwent a charrette that was considered by many to be successful in providing a sailing chart for that city. The Naco Planning Charrette will coincide with the second day of another historic occasion for the community — the Turquoise Valley Golf Course’s celebration of its century of existence. Several things are happening lately with Naco, and the charrette will be an opportunity to discuss these developments. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

A hands on effort to help preserve historic Camp Naco

Saturday March 29th, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. there will be a Naco Planning Charette to discuss an update of Naco Brownfields project, the creation of a park next to the school with walking/running/biking trail, and the preservation and future of Camp Naco (pictured). Anyone interested in Naco’s future should attend. The Charette will take place at Naco Elementary School in Naco. A continental breakfast and lunch will be served. For further information or to join efforts to preserve Camp Naco, contact CNAPC, c/o Professor J.C. Mutchler, University of Arizona South, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635. You can also send an email to or contact Rebecca Orozco, Director – Center for Lifelong Learning at 520-515-5382 or email

Camp Naco

This adobe compound was constructed by the U.S. military between 1919 and 1923, as part of the War Department’s Mexican Border Defense construction project — a plan to build a 1,200-mile barrier along the border. After the camp closed, the Civilian Conservation Corps used the complex in the 1930s for staging projects in southeast Arizona. Over the next several decades, the property owners used the structures as rental housing. In 1990, VisionQuest purchased the property for a rehabilitation camp for wayward youth. The rezoning was denied and the camp has remained vacant ever since.

VisionQuest donated the property to the Town of Huachuca City in 2006. By that time, the property had been heavily degraded due to neglect. Many of the adobe structures are eroded from exposure to the elements. The roof of one of the barracks has caved in, and other buildings merely ruins. In May 2006, arson destroyed four of the non-commissioned officer buildings and damaged the roof of a fifth. Presently, unchecked vegetation is threatening the foundation of buildings and increasing the danger of fire.

[For more information, contact J.C. Mutchler, chair, Camp Naco Arizona Preservation Committee, at 520-458-8278, ext. 2186 or e-mail.]

November 2007 Update: