Category Archives: Development

‘A future, or just history’?

A Sunday Globe story, “A Future, or Just History,” about Boston caught my eye. I was arrested by the headline, whose kicker and subhead only added insult to injury: “Trapped in Time” and “No, Faneuil Hall isn’t ‘Boston’ anymore. But … Continue reading

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Showdown on Blackstone

Next Tuesday’s 4:45 p.m. meeting of the City Plan Commission may tell whether Providence and its citizens can preserve its historical character. A developer wants to demolish the mansion, outbuildings and grounds of the Beresford-Nicholson estate on Blackstone Boulevard, and … Continue reading

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Box #1, Box #2 or Box #3?

The headline refers to the three proposals to build on three parcels along the banks of the Providence River in the I-195 corridor. I missed the I-195 commission’s truncated meeting on this matter just before Christmas. The panel left before … Continue reading

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Save the carriage house, too

The carriage house and servants’ quarters at 315 Slater Ave. is among the outbuildings that would be demolished along with the Beresford-Nicholson house, on the East Side of Providence, if the city approves a proposed major subdivision of the estate … Continue reading

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Meanwhile, on Blackstone

A third effort to transform a historic Providence estate into a collection of big cheesy houses has emerged along Blackstone Boulevard. Readers will recall when neighborhood opposition in 2014 thwarted a division of the Granoff estate into ten lots, at … Continue reading

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The path now against Fane

The Providence City Council has overridden Mayor Elorza’s brave veto of a bill to allow developer Jason Fane to proceed with a tower that plainly violates city zoning law. The building would no longer violate the height limit for Parcel … Continue reading

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Politics of the Fane override

When a pro-Fane tower councilman called in sick for Tuesday’s vote on whether to override Mayor Elorza’s brave veto of the Fane tower legislation, the council postponed the vote until tomorrow, Thursday, Dec. 13. Having spouted my opposition to the … Continue reading

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Mayor Elorza’s brave veto

To the surprise of most observers, Mayor Elorza vetoed the Providence City Council’s approval last week of legislation to raise by a factor of six the 100-foot height limit on Parcel 42 of the Route 195 corridor. That legislation, a … Continue reading

Posted in Architecture, Development, Providence Journal | Tagged , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Veto the tower, Mr. Mayor

I wrote a letter to Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza today [Monday]. I sent it by email and then hand-delivered another copy tucked inside my book Lost Providence, where I inscribed the title page in his honor. “Delivered with the sincerest … Continue reading

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The big boxes of the future

A few days ago some interesting photographs landed in my email inbox as part of an online discussion of big-box retail and its design, a subject near and dear to my heart, as I have watched the evolution of suburban … Continue reading

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