Tag Archives: Urban Planning

Why historic preservation?

I just got through watching the Providence Historic Preservation Commission grant conceptual approval to the renovation and expansion of a charming little Italianate cottage on Williams Street, just off the city’s historic Benefit Street. It was a most depressing event. … Continue reading

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“The Art of Classic Planning”

This comprehensive, fascinating and brilliant volume by Nir Haim Buras, who founded the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, is subtitled “Building Beautiful and Enduring Communities.” So one might well assume that it rejects the … Continue reading

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Kennedy Plaza is still at risk

Efforts by the city and state governments to make Kennedy Plaza ugly have not yet succeeded in making it fail. But the attempt to ruin the central public square of Providence is ongoing. The plaza’s beauty has diminished greatly since … Continue reading

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New and old on Westminster

Several years in the making, renovations on downtown’s Westminster Street between Union and Mathewson are almost done. It will take more time, and possibly the extirpation of coronavirus “and stuff” (as my son puts it), for the buildings to be … Continue reading

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History as cottage industry

Monday’s meeting via Zoom of the Providence Historic District Commission surprised observers by delaying an expected vote to approve the relocation of a historic Italianate cottage on Williams Street, on College Hill. This was the second straight delay. That does … Continue reading

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The future of Providence

Dire. That’s a good word for the bad future of Providence if the erosion of its historic character continues at its current pace. In “Say no to ugly buildings,” an Oct. 28 oped for the Providence Journal, I listed the … Continue reading

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Waterfire’s quarter century

If I were more energetic I’d scrounge up examples of photos from WaterFire going back five, ten, fifteen, twenty and 25 years to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Providence’s art installation created (as if it were sufficient to use such … Continue reading

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How modernism is killing us

In my post on Tuesday, “Alien spaceship in Alberta!,” author and iconoclast James Howard Kunstler tagged Edmonton’s new Deconstructivist library as August’s “Eyesore of the Month.” (The name pegs the style as accurately as that of Brutalism.) Well, as they … Continue reading

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Save the Crook Point Bridge

Call me a stick in the mud, but climbing the 111-year-old Crook Point Bascule Bridge stuck in the up position since 1976 is not on my bucket list. However, since the last train chugged across the Seekonk River, pimpled daredevils … Continue reading

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In Waterbury, a sip of Conn.

Next Wednesday I’ll be visiting Waterbury, Conn., for the first time in a great many years, and even then I did not visit but passed through. For a New Englander (by choice, not by birth) I have relatively little experience … Continue reading

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