The 20 properties on this tour were built from 1845 to 1926. Click on a map marker to see the property name, then click the name to see more. Or, scroll down to see a gallery of all properties. Click any photo to learn more.
Providence’s West Side is anything but homogeneous, and the three tours originally included in the West Side Development chapter in the 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture (Federal Hill, Broadway, and Armory District to Westminster Street) vividly illustrate the great variety of building types, forms, and styles found in three proximate but remarkably distinct neighborhoods. The scale of the streets and the relationship of the buildings to the street give each neighborhood its distinct character and sense of place. Each is strongly individual, and the visitor to each will immediately sense the neighborhood’s character. As with most of the city’s neighborhoods, there will be the sense that none of these could be found anywhere else but in Providence.
Broadway is literally broad. It achieved its current length, from Downtown Providence to Olneyville, and width, eighty feet, in 1854 when it became the city’s widest street. Lined with trees it became a preferred venue in the second half of the nineteenth century for the ambitious houses of Providence’s striving-to-arrive merchants and manufacturers. Across the country, main drags out of center cities developed this way, but Broadway retains its character as few other streets of its vintage do.
– 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture