Good News and Bad News In Historic Preservation This Week


With the start of a new year and Providence Preservation Society set to unveil its annual "Most Endangered Properties" list on January 23, it's a good time to think about historic preservation. This week brought both good news and bad news on that front.

First, the bad news: The 1871 Alexander F. Adie house on Federal Hill (right by the arch) is being demolished, supposedly clearing the way for a hotel. While the eventual result could be good or bad – that remains to be seen – we can all agree that it's sad to see an iconic structure razed. Both Greater City Providence and ArtInRuins have been documenting the demolition and soliciting reactions.

On the brighter side of things, the good news is that the City has announced a transfer of ownership and redevelopment plan for the George C. Arnold building, known as the "Narrow Building" donwtown. It's an overdue revival of one of PPS's former "Most Endangered Properties." Washington Street has really come alive over the past few years with AS220's revamp of the Dreyfus and the new and improved Biltmore Garage. Allowing this unique structure to remain vacant and blighted was a real impediment to that progress, and we're excited to see the Taveras administration making a move on it.

What do you think of these projects, and other historic preservation (or not) efforts around the city? Tell us below.


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Greater City Providence and ArtInRuins have been doing a wonderful job of being vigilant about the demolition of our historic building stock, and the importance of preservation in this city can't be overstated. Check out this letter I wrote earlier this week about the demolition of the Adie House:

Friday, January 10, 2014