*DEADLINE EXTENDED: MONDAY, MAY 18 @ 9 AM*
Looking for something to occupy your time during isolation? We have just the thing: a design competition!
We are asking YOU to share what you would like to see for the former Citizens Bank site at Westminster and Cranston Streets, the gateway to the West End of Providence.
A redevelopment of this historic location has been proposed, which PPS believes is inappropriate for this significant gateway to the west side of the city. In response to this insufficient proposal, PPS named the Citizens Bank site one of this year’s Most Endangered Properties.
Today the site consists of the 1921 Citizens Bank Building, a 1978 annex, and surface parking across 2.57 acres. Historically, the intersection has been known as Hoyle Square and Canonicus Square. This is a once-in-a-century redevelopment opportunity, and the West End deserves something better than what’s been proposed.
We want to hear from you — what do you propose for this site? Be creative! Entries will be reviewed by the Providence Preservation Society and the West Broadway Neighborhood Association, and cash prizes will be awarded to the top submissions.
About the Site
Six contiguous parcels located between Westminster and Cranston Streets. Street addresses are: 870, 946, 964 and 1000 Westminster and 57 Cranston Street. The site includes all lots east of Thomas P. Whitten Way except for the lot at 93 Cranston Street occupied by Urban Greens and a new housing complex.
Land area: 2.57 acres
Base zoning: C-2, general commercial district. The C-2 General Commercial District is intended for more intensive commercial uses and key commercial nodes, including larger retail establishments. For more, see the City of Providence Zoning Ordinance beginning on page 5-1 (link below).
Some prompts to get those creative juices flowing:
- What do you want to see here?
- What is best for this location?
- What’s the best use of this land for the neighborhood? What is needed?
- Who are you designing for?
- How will you repurpose the two former bank buildings on the site?
- What other types of buildings will you include? Think about height, massing, and style.
- What types of uses do you imagine on the site? Residential, commercial, retail, civic — a mix of uses? How do they relate to existing uses nearby and to each other?
- What about landscaping and public access and amenities?
- How can new, equitable development help to repair the destruction that occurred in this neighborhood during Urban Renewal?
- How can the site best accommodate pedestrians, cyclists, those traveling by car, and those travelling by public transportation?
- How will you relate your design to the neighboring high schools and John Hope Settlement House?
For your convenience, we’ve provided information about the site and surrounding area.
Site Information and Neighborhood History
- Citizens Bank Most Endangered Properties listing
- Rhode Tours: Pond Street: A Lost Neighborhood and West Side of Providence
Maps and Zoning
- City of Providence Zoning Ordinance
- GIS map (right click +”view image” for full size); and link to interactive map
- Sanborn map (right click +”view image” for full size)
List of types of buildings and names of establishments from the 1900-1919 map:
Two- and three-story stores with businesses including: bakery, second hand furniture, paints and paper, offices, lodgings, hand power printing, automotives, storage, painting, blacksmith, sheet metal warehouse, photo glass, printing, bicycle repair, lumber storage, sash door and blind warehouse, carpenter, and “What Cheer Steam Laundry”.
Two- and three-story dwellings, mostly along Cranston Street and Burgess Street (today Thomas P. Whitten Way), which is the western boundary of our project site.
At the turn of the 20th century, the buildings on the project site were predominantly wooden frame construction (noted in yellow).
- B&W aerial (right click +”view image” for full size)
- Historical images of Hoyle Square and Citizens Bank from Providence Public Library
- Current photos of the site (right click +”view image” for full size)
Top images: from west end of the site looking east | Bottom left image: on Westminster Street looking southeast towards the site | Bottom right image: view from the site eastward down Westminster Street
- Entries are encouraged from individuals and groups, but not firms.
- The competition is open to all age groups and abilities. We encourage professional, amateur, and budding architects, designers, urban planners, landscape architects, and interested community members to submit their ideas.
- Different media are welcome, so grab your pen & ink, markers, mouse, paints, cardboard, or crayons! This is the time for creativity and wild brainstorming.
Send a photo or PRF of your entry, along with a short (500 words max.) statement about your vision, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Entries will be reviewed by the Providence Preservation Society and the West Broadway Neighborhood Association. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top submissions.
Submission Deadline: May 15, 11:59 pm.
DISCLAIMER: PPS and WBNA retain the right to use images and language from entries in communications and marketing.