East Side vs. Brown University: 18 to Watch in 2018

Wednesday, January 03, 2018


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Brown wants to demolish the historic Sharpe carriage house on Angell Street

In December, Brown University officials went before the Providence City Planning Commission, to amend the college's "Master Plan" to allow it to tear down at least 4 historic properties in its possession, to make way for a new performing arts center.

Neighbors, historic preservationists -- and even students and faculty -- came out in opposition to the plan, which postponed any action on the proposal until 2018. 

"I'd love to the project downtown, but it's not my call," said Brown Professor Bertram Malle, who lives near the proposed location. "And parking and traffic are concerns, [as are] losing parking lots." 

It's not just the isolated "ask" by the Ivy League institution, however, that has opponents concerned -- it's the bigger picture. 

"[The Providence Preservation Society remains opposed to the continual erosion of historical buildings on College Hill. By our count, more than two dozen historic structures were demolished between 1995 and 2015: Some for new facilities, including Brown's new engineering and life sciences buildings, and others for parking," said the PPS in advance of the city hearing. 

Will Brown -- or neighbors -- prevail?  Watch in 2018 to find out. 



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