Does your town have a manufacturing district that just feels very 1960s? That’s probably because that’s the last time anyone’s invested in them as we slowly evolve to an information-based economy. However, the Olneyville neighborhood in Providence, RI isn’t going to settle for living in that bygone era.
The City designated 175 acres for development investment based on a more contemporary economy – the Promenade District – with 10,000 new jobs, 2000 new residents, and 153 acres of park land. They were also wise enough to recognize that the abandoned Worsted textile mill, built in 1887, would be a haven for the creative class, resulting in what is today known as Rising Sun Mills (pictured), 12 acres and 313,000 s.f. of lofts, artist workspace, and retail. That they chose to allow Struever Bros. Eccles & Rouse to develop it shows that they really do understand what the creative class wants.
If the City had established a beta community beforehand, this would be exactly the kind of implementation program and resulting development suggested in the previous entry, How can a City establish a ‘beta community’ to attract the creative class?