The Providence Department of Planning & Development announced its second round of Pop Up Providence projects at 235 Westminster Street, temporary home of the Providence Polaroid Project. Director of Long Range Planning, Bonnie Nickerson said that the program began last fall with 8 innovative, small-scale demonstration projects that “activate, celebrate, and enliven the city.” Showcasing local talent and creativity, the projects help us “reimagine what the public realm can be.”
Year 1 projects included bright orange Adirondack chairs on the east riverwalk, Walk Providence wayfinding signs, a Thayer Street parklet, and Before I Die walls. For this round, the planning department received 30 proposals and agreed to fund 8 projects throughout the city. Within downtown, look for AS220’s NightVisions at Grant’s Block on July 25th, August 20th and 27th, and September 3rd and 12th, as well as Devan Durante and Brandon Lane’s Providence Polaroid Project, Wed-Fri (11 am to 8 pm) and Sat-Sun (10 am through 5 pm) through August 31st. Along with other city parks, Burnside Park will host DownCity Design’s “Here I See” Lego table from August 6th through the 20th; Joseph Skorupa’s #IamProvidenceProject from August 10th through October 15th; and New Urban Arts’ Corrugated Community on August 7th.
In June, the U.S. Conference of Mayors awarded the city a Livability Award for the Pop Up Providence program. Of the 300 submissions reviewed, Providence was recognized for having one of the top 5 best practices for innovation and commitment to civic engagement. As Mayor Taveras acknowledged, these projects use public space in an interesting way, and he looks forward to the next round. Congratulations to the city for the program’s ongoing success!