Can BrownZilla Be Stopped?

Brown University has announced plans to flatten seven more buildings on Brook Street, this time between Cushing and Meeting Streets. Just last October at least three lovely brick structures were demolished further down the Brook Street (see pictures below).

Judging from the chain link fence now wrapped around these parcels Brown must think it has a green light. The first sign that they are proceeding will be the sound of chainsaws cutting down all the trees, something Brown likes to do on weekends, or when students and faculty are away on vacation.

According to the Providence Journal,

In an amendment to the school’s master plan filed with the Providence Planning Department, Brown officials wrote they want to raze seven multifamily houses that the school owns between Cushing Street, Meeting Street and Brook Street. The amendment document calls the two-unit buildings “unsightly.”

Brown plans to have a third party manage the proposed parking lot to “serve the needs of the Thayer Street commercial district.” The lot will not be used “as a permit parking lot for Brown faculty, staff or students,” Brown wrote.

Only a couple of years ago nine houses were demolished for the generic student housing now lining Thayer Street. And that parking lot further up Brook Street across from Blue State Coffee? That used to be houses well. Brown University seems determined to destroy the neighborhood’s funky mixed-use character and the architectural fabric of the streetscape that make the Thayer Street neighborhood unique. Brown now calls these buildings “unsightly” as if they hadn’t been the landlords for the last year and a half. I for one will miss the springtime porch parties.

The Providence Preservation Society is on record opposing the current plan. The City Plan Commission must approve the change to Brown’s master plan and a hearing on the matter is scheduled for Tuesday. Contact person: Lori Hagen at (401) 421.7740.

Hearing 4:45pm, Tuesday, January 19, 1st floor, Doorley Bldg., 444 Westminster Street, (directions)


Below: Brook Street, south of Waterman, October 2015.

brook street






Same scene today. Gone.

Brown University

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Providence Daily Dose