Photo from Providence Preservation Society
The building is listed on the Providence Preservation Society’s 2010 list of 10 Most Endangered Properties.
The Brownell & Field Co. and Terminal Warehouse Co. buildings represent a typology that faces development challenges in this economy. They are both located in areas where they remain one of the few historic structures of their kind due to the demolition of other warehouses and industrial complexes.
The Brownell & Field Company Building is part of the Provisions Warehouse Historic District. Brownell & Field and two adjacent buildings, Standard Wholesale Liquors Co. (1937) at 115 Harris Avenue and Turner Centre System Building (1923-26) at 135 Harris Avenue, are the only buildings remaining in that district. Brownell & Field is also part of the city’s Industrial & Commercial Buildings District (ICBD).
The building is a three-story, flat-roof, lozenge-shaped, brick industrial building with close proximity to the railroad tracks. The building’s trapezoidal plan is a response both to the rail lines that directly served the building, with access for loading and unloading along the north wall adjacent to the tracks, and to the vehicular traffic that had access to loading bays on the west elevation.
The Journal will be seeking permission to demolish the building at the Monday meeting of the Providence Historic District Commission. The Commission meets at 4:45pm at 400 Westminster Street, 4th Floor. Providence Historic District Commission Meeting Agenda [.pdf]
PPS told the Providence Business News:
The society charged that the Journal neglected the building’s upkeep and was now using its poor condition as justification to tear it down.
“As the owners have failed to show plans for a higher and better use of the site, we see no compelling basis on which to grant demolition,” the society said.
In an interview, the society’s Preservation and Advocacy Coordinator Kathleen Philp said the organization was urging the Journal to retain the property. She said if the state restores the historic preservation tax credit program, the site could become more valuable.