Greater City Providence

Brown Med School Building Canceled, Other Changes…

The Brown Daily Herald reports on changes decided by Brown this past weekend to adjust to the current economic woes, including the cancelation of construction of a new Medical School building in the Jewelry District. The medical school will now likely get renovated space in an existing Jewelry District building that has yet to be chosen.

Given that the late Warren Alpert gave 100 million dollars to the medical school (since named for the philanthropist) largely for the construction of such a new building, I wonder how that gift is being used now and how the Alpert Foundation may feel about the change. Given that other worthy non-profits were lobbying Alpert at the time for donations and were, in a sense, wholly beaten out by Brown, I image they must be doubly seething right now as well…

Also canceled is the proposed Brain Sciences Building along Angell Street and several other smaller initiatives around campus. The Brain Sciences departments will also likely get renovated space in an existing building, likely on College Hill.

The strikingly contemporary Creative Arts Center Building proposed for Angell Street, however, is on track and may even come in under-budget according to the BDH article.

While certainly a blow, it pales in comparison to some cuts that some other Ivy League colleges are making, such as Yale University’s announcement today that it is indefinitely canceling at least 2 billion dollars of new construction in and around New Haven, Connecticut.

Bret Ancowitz


  • The Brain Sciences Building was the one that they were trying to move houses to clear the site for, correct?

    Small consolation is that the project was canceled before the houses were moved or torn down, unlike other projects around town.

  • Bret brings up an interesting question–Princeton recently lost a gigantic suit against the family of one of their big donors from years and years and years ago because the family felt Princeton was not honoring the family’s wishes regarding their school of public administration. Hopefully Brown didn’t paint themselves into a corner with that money by promising a shiny new building.

  • I’m with Jef, kind of. I see this as sort of a blessing in disguise. It’s a win for the preservationists not only because the houses on Angell were saved (for now, at least), but because there’ll be another rehab in the jewelry district. It’s certainly preferable to some new building that would take a chunk of the new 195 land off the tax rolls for good.

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