Archives For Downcity
The peregrine falcon eggs atop the Superman Building are hatching. It looks like two of the four eggs have hatched so far and they are being fed something now (a rat, a pigeon?).
Watch them on the Peregrine Falcon Webcam.
Update (Apr. 22): Union Studio News: Greater Kennedy Plaza
The Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy (DPPC) is set to unveil plans for the transformation of Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence this evening.
Stakeholders in the downtown area including the City, the Parks Department, RIPTA, area businesses and universities, and others have been working on reimagining the plaza for the last 6 years. Over the past 12 months, through an “Our Towns” grant from the NEA, Union Studio Architects has led the process of finalizing that vision.
Among other improvements to be unveiled this evening, the plan calls for improving the bus operations at the heart of the plaza, Kennedy Plaza proper if you will. Through their on-going Comprehensive Operational Analysis, RIPTA has determined that schedule improvements will allow them to reduce the number of berths to 10. These 10 berths can be relocated to the edges of the plaza along Washington and Fulton Streets, allowing the bus-only lanes in the middle of the plaza to be filled in and turned to other public uses. Amy Pettine, RIPTA’s director of planning and marketing told The Providence Journal, “It will be a better experience for riders and a better environment.”
Improvements throughout the Greater Kennedy Plaza area (Biltmore Park, the Skating Center, Burnside Park, and the area from City Hall to the Court House) which will be fully released to the public tomorrow, include better integrating the Skating Center to the wider area allowing for better off-season (summer) use, raised roadways allowing for better pedestrian connectivity throughout the plaza and calming automobile traffic, and a Civic Plaza that DPPC Executive Director Cliff Wood calls a “front porch for City Hall.”
Reconfiguration of the bus stops and improvements infront of City Hall may be completed in 2014. Federal money the City has for roadway improvements would go toward this initial phase. This money is from the Circulator Project, which will be reconfiguring roadways between LaSalle and Emmet Squares this year. Wood told the Providence Journal that the entire project may cost as much as $20 million and depending on fundraising, could take 4 years to realize.
We’ll publish further specifics on the Kennedy Plaza plan tomorrow.
Full Disclosure: I am a member of the Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy Board.
The Providence Journal: Future uncertain for empty icon
Bank of America confirmed Tuesday that it has moved the last of its employees out of the Art Deco skyscraper, which earned its nickname from its resemblance to The Daily Planet in the 1950s “Superman” TV series. The bank’s departure leaves a Jazz Age monument to Rhode Island’s industrial might, when it opened in 1928, as a virtual 26-story tombstone marking the state’s economic decline.
Tearing down the building for something more practical “is not an option,” said Fischer. Other alternatives “would not be good for the city,” he added, such as leaving it vacant or renovating it for offices, which would create a glut of office space and depress commercial rental rates.
Fischer called rental apartments “the highest and best use of the property,” bringing 500 more people to live downtown while creating at least a year and a half of construction work that would benefit the economy.
The building has 350,000 square feet, and High Rock hopes to build around 290 apartments of various sizes, Fischer said. The first floor, which now includes a grand lobby with high ceilings and marble columns, could be used as a restaurant or other commercial space, but the rest would be residential, he said. Among the issues High Rock is looking at is how to address parking since the building does not have it, Fischer said.
It may be freezing outside, but spring is on the way and that means the Skating Center will be closing down the ice soon.
The Providence Rink at The Bank of America City Center Offers Last Chance of The Season to Catch Some Ice
An extra week to enjoy outdoor ice-skating in downtown Providence! Special events to celebrate the end of the season!
PROVIDENCE – Providence residents and visitors alike can savor the final days of winter by skating outside at the Bank of America City Center at the end of its 14th season. The season ends Sunday, March 24th, completing the 18-week season of ice-skating that was enjoyed by more than 50,000 skaters.
- Special Weekday Hours Monday, March 18 to Friday, March 22: 4pm to 10pm
- Saturday, March 23 and Sunday, March 24 hours: 11am to 10pm
Special events for the last two weeks of the season:
- Thursday, March 14th: Art in Ice ice-sculpting feature from 6pm to 9pm.
- Friday, March 15: High School Night special 7pm to 10pm.
- Saturday, March 16th: Girl Scout cookies for sale!
- Sunday, March 17th: St. Patrick’s Day celebration with City Girl Cupcake 12pm to 4pm
- Monday, March 18th: New weekday hours from 4pm to 10pm
- Saturday, March 23rd: Open 11 to 10pm
- Sunday, March 24th: Open 11am to 10pm. Closing Day
With the end of the ice skating season drawing to a close, The Providence Rink at the Bank of America City Center will transform into a premier programming and event center from April to October! The Providence Rink is a perfect location to host all types of summer programming and events with over 14,000 square feet of space available in the heart of downtown. Event applications are still being accepted for the upcoming 2013 summer and fall season.
Coming soon! The Providence Rink will unveil a new website at ProvidenceRink.com that will provide the complete year-round programming and event schedule and offerings.
For additional information until our new website is up, please visit ProvidenceSkating.com or call 401.331.5544.
Yellow Jackets working hard in PPAC Square clearing snow.
Crews removing massive amounts if snow from around The Dunk.
There was this giant snow pile on Eddy Street, then I went to Kennedy Plaza, then I got coffee.