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A two-story Art Deco building with a flat roof and pier-and-spandrel construction, the former headquarters for the Rhode Island Department of Transportation is one of the only examples of the machine aesthetic in the architecture of Smith Hill. It was one of the first modernist buildings erected by the State of Rhode Island.

When the Narragansett Bay Commission (NBC) acquired the building for their Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) project in 2004, plans initially called for the former RIDOT Headquarters to be demolished. However, in 2006, the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission determined that the building is potentially eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. Terms of the sale required the current owner to restore and maintain the building, and there were reportedly plans to restore the building to garage a fleet of trucks. However, the building remains in disrepair and is being underutilized as a warehouse. No plans to begin work on the building have been submitted despite its inclusion on the 2008, 2009, 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2023 Most Endangered Properties lists.

As of February, 2019, the building is owned by Quality Food Company, a family-owned food distributor that has operated out of Smith Hill for over 75 years. They have expressed an interest in demolishing the building in order to accommodate their expanding business.

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© 2024 Guide to Providence Architecture. All rights reserved. Design by J. Hogue at Highchair designhaus, with development & support by Kay Belardinelli.