Providence Preservation Society Announces the 2015 Providence Symposium: Beyond Buildings: Preserving the Livable Neighborhood

PROVIDENCE, RI – The Providence Preservation Society (PPS) announces the 2015 Providence Symposium will take place on November 5, 6 and 7, 2015.  Entitled Beyond Buildings: Preserving the Livable Neighborhood, this year’s Symposium will examine community identity and the importance of “human capital” to our city’s success; discuss programs and policy blueprints for stability, sustainability, and community development; and honor the individual character of Providence’s neighborhoods.

The annual Providence Symposium engages local stakeholders and experts from across the nation on topics critical to the city’s future. The 2015 event builds on the 2014 series’ emphasis on downtown Providence by turning to the city’s neighborhoods. Leading thinkers and advocates will contextualize current trends in immigration, mobility, and home ownership, and share their experiences creating places that foster urban residents’ sense of wellbeing.

A stellar line-up of speakers whose work has a far-reaching impact on cities all over the world will take part in the 2015 Providence Symposium conversation:

·         KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Donovan Rypkema, preservationist, economist and right-sizing expert who works internationally with public and NGO clients on the economics of historic preservation

·         SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER: Majora Carter, urban revitalization strategist, social-enterprise pioneer, and MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Fellow lauded for her work in the South Bronx

·         SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER: Ned Kaufman, historic preservationist and author of Place, Race, and Story: Essays on the Past and Future of Historic Preservation

“The traits of a great city include neighborhoods that are pleasant, safe, and well maintained. These are places that foster their residents’ sense of wellbeing and offer opportunities for health, wealth, and quality of life,” stated Brent Runyon, executive director of the Providence Preservation Society. “While we believe these great places and cities are nurtured by preserving places of architectural and historical significance, preservation also sustains the distinctive cultural histories and unique character of our neighborhoods. Exploring this is at the core of the Beyond the Buildingsconversation.”

Beyond Buildings:  Preserving the Livable Neighborhood will take a critical look at the many ways that Providence is – and could be – empowering residents to build community and prosperity by reclaiming and preserving the built environments of our neighborhoods,” said Catherine Taylor, co-chair of the 2015 Providence Symposium committee. “We hope to spur creative dialog about how seemingly unrelated efforts or competing priorities might be aligned to lift our neighborhoods up and contribute to the greatness of our city.”

Through plenary speakers, panels, receptions, and a special Manton Avenue Project presentation, the 2015 Symposium offers a breakout opportunity to envision a future for the Providence that honors and meets the needs of current and anticipated populations. This 3-day event is organized in partnership with Presenting Partner The Providence Journal Charitable Legacy Fund and lead sponsors AECOM, Paolino Properties, and Suburban Integrated Facilities Resources. Portions of the Providence Symposium on Saturday, November 7th, will be free and open to the public thanks to support from the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities.

PPS invites all to join them for an inspiring, galvanizing program that will dive deep into the issues and conditions that define our city, now and into the future. Tickets to the November events range in price from FREE to $125.00. More details and registration can be found at, or by calling 401-831-7440.

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