Providence, RI A Cranston philanthropist, a wide-ranging initiative to tell the story of Westerly granite, the rehabilitation of a factory into live and work spaces on Providence’s West Side, the transformation of a white elephant into housing for the formerly homeless in Warwick – these are among the people, places, and projects that were honored at the ninth annual Rhody Awards for Historic Preservation. The reception and awards ceremony took place at WaterFire Arts Center on October 22.
The Rhody Awards, chosen by Preserve Rhode Island (PRI) and the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission (RIHPHC) from nominations by the public, honor individuals, organizations, and projects for their contributions to the preservation of the state’s historic places.
The 2017 awards included:
• Antoinette F. Downing Volunteer Service Award to Elizabeth Capozzi for her commitment to preserving Rhode Island’s heritage as an advocate, fundraiser and generous board member of the State House Restoration Society and Preserve Rhode Island.
• Frederick C. Williamson Professional Leadership Award to Pieter Roos for his contributions to historic preservation in Newport and his 18-year tenure as executive director of the Newport Restoration Foundation.
• Education Award to the Babcock-Smith House Museum for their wide-ranging initiative to research, interpret and broadcast Westerly’s singular role in the granite industry.
• Landscape Restoration Award to U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for undergrounding over 60 utility poles along nearly two miles of Sachuest Point Rd. in Middletown, one of the state’s most scenic areas and a source of artistic inspiration since the 18th century.
• Stewardship Award to the State of Rhode Island’s Department of Administration for its commitment to restoring and preserving the Murals inside the Rhode Island State House Dome (1947) in Providence and Colony House (1736) in Newport.
• Project Award to ASH NYC for the transformation of 32 Custom House St. in Providence, built in 1875 for the wholesale grocer J. G. Eddy & Co., into 10 apartments and ground floor retail space.
• Project Award to The Preservation Society of Newport County for restoring the character-defining tile roof of the Chinese Tea House (1913) at Marble House in Newport.
• Project Award to Cromwell Ventures for the rehabilitation of three buildings at the late 19th century Mechanical Fabric Company Complex to create 40 live/work spaces, shared workspace and a culinary incubator in Providence’s West End.
• Project Award to WaterFire Providence for the reuse of Building 85 (1937-51) at the U.S. Rubber Plant as their new operations center and social enterprise venture for the city’s arts community.
• Project Award to One Bay St. Center for the rehabilitation of the Lanphear Livery Stable (1885) to provide an array of community spaces, storefronts, offices and apartments at the gateway to Watch Hill.
• Project Award to House of Hope CDC for rehabilitating the Fair House (1819) in Pawtuxet Village to create comfortable, safe apartments for formerly homeless individuals with disabilities.
Also, the Preservation celebration recognized Edward Sanderson, who retired from the R.I. Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission after 42 years of service. He is recognized as one of Rhodes Island’s most respected leaders in the field of historic preservation.