TB on Fogarty’s demise

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The remains of the Fogarty Building. (See time-lapse video in Providence Journal, link below.)

Here is my Traditional Building blog post from a couple months ago, around the time some ardent local preservationists held a funeral for the John C. Fo- garty Memorial Building, soon after its demolition began. Soon after that its demolition was delayed, but now it is on again and the building, qua build- ing, is gone. All that’s left is the rubble, and that should be gone soon, too. The heart-warming photo above is from a video taken by the Providence Journal and linked to in a story below.

Readers with very long memories will see that this post resurrects a column I wrote for the Providence Journal back in 2007, with all discussion of the proposed demolition of the Police & Fire Headquarters removed. That demo took place soon after. The Fogarty survived another decade. The TB version is called “The Fogarty’s Demise: Not So Hard to Say Yes to Beauty.” Enjoy.

Enjoy? What about this! The Journal story that follows has a time-lapse video of the Fogarty being nibbled to death by ducks – the two machines that chewed away at it for weeks. The fall of the last wall is not shown, but interspiced are shots from many angles, and shots of the operators of the demo machines that suggest how much fun they are having and, perhaps, how much joy they are giving. The Journal story is called “Last wall of Fogarty Building falls in Providence.” It’s about three minutes of the most intimate pleasure that can be had by someone who truly loves architecture: A Brutalist building literally getting its comeuppance – getting what it deserves. … Ahhhh!

About David Brussat

This blog was begun in 2009 as a feature of the Providence Journal, where I was on the editorial board and wrote a weekly column of architecture criticism for three decades. Architecture Here and There fights the style wars for classical architecture and against modern architecture, no holds barred. History Press asked me to write and in August 2017 published my first book, "Lost Providence." I am now writing my second book. My freelance writing on architecture and other topics addresses issues of design and culture locally and globally. I am a member of the board of the New England chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, which bestowed an Arthur Ross Award on me in 2002. I work from Providence, R.I., where I live with my wife Victoria, my son Billy and our cat Gato. If you would like to employ my writing and editing to improve your work, please email me at my consultancy, dbrussat@gmail.com, or call 401.351.0457. Testimonial: "Your work is so wonderful - you now enter my mind and write what I would have written." - Nikos Salingaros, mathematician at the University of Texas, architectural theorist and author of many books.
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