The Fletcher building began its new life in late 1998 as studios for graduate students at RISD. Each of the six floors has studios for painting, printmaking and sculpture with shared wood shops and critique space. Photo, new media and design students use the adjacent Mason building – the Center for Integrative Technologies – by accessing it through new connecting stairwells between the buildings.
While the interior renovations went quickly, and reused the old doors and windows that looked into the hallways, the exterior remodelling took more time, and was completed in late 2004. Ground floor retail again occupies the space, with Gourmet Heaven, which opened in 2009 and a selection of bars along Union Street.
We were able to take the shots from the Union Street side of the building so well because the demolition of Traveller’s Aid is occuring next door.
These two buildings (Mason and Fletcher) are part of RISD’s expansion into downtown. The former Hospital Trust building was be renovated for student housing and the newly expanded RISD library, and an ambitious new Student Center will break ground soon on South Main Street.
(from RIHPHC’s Downtown Survey, 1984)
Fletcher building (ca. 1895; 1903): George Waterman Cady, architect; 5-story, brick-sheathed, steel-frame structure with mid-century storefronts; main entrance in quoined pavillion on Union Street; 5-bay facade of pier and recessed spandrel system with Chicago window infill second through fifth stories culminating with panels and cartouches above which are simple rectagular windows and round headed windows on top floor. Built as an office structure in the late 1890s, the Fletcher building was extensively remodeled in 1903 when the top three stories were added. It continues to function as an office building.
achin I have an office on the 6th floor of the Fletcher Bldg. Some time ago a railing cap of a banister was removed exposing a signature. It reads:
A W Warren
335 Pocasset Ave
Feb 20, 1903
Does this have any historical significance?
The information about each building grows as visitors let us know about their experiences. Did you or a member of your family work here? Did you grow up near it as a child? Let us know. All entries will be moderated and may be posted in an edited form. We will use your name unless you tell us otherwise. We will not make your email public.