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Shockoe redevelopment: on archaeology and the 17th Street Market

December 12, 2013 8:39 am by

Two longer pieces on aspects of the proposed Shockoe redevelopment plan.

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Urban Scale Richmond looks in-depth at the plan’s impact on the Seventeenth Street Market:

As stated in the Shockoe Economic Revitalization Strategy of 2011, a major goal of the new First Market Square should be “reinforcing Main Street Station’s position as an epicenter driving the culture, creativity and identity” of the Shockoe neighborhood. The market, by incorporating flexible programming, top-notch design values, and ‘round-the-clock scheduling, should be a catalyst for the success of the larger neighborhood. A fully functioning square could underline the kinds of urbane values conducive to the creative entrepreneurship that has already transformed the Shockoe area into a dynamic place to live and work.

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Archaeologist Terry Brock writes about the archaeological impact of a development in Shockoe:

Instead of discussing who’s right and who’s wrong, I want to discuss the way this debate frames what is historically significant about this space, and how that affects the archaeological resources at the site. I also want to examine whether archaeology will be necessary if this project continues and what archaeological sites may be affected. Finally, I will make a case for a public approach to the mitigation. In this post, I am operating under an assumption that the project, as proposed, will happen. This is not an endorsement, nor is it a critique, of the project: I’m simply asking, “if the project is supported, how will it impact archaeological resources, and what will be or can be done about it?” I have only seen archaeology mentioned a few times, and done so in ways that are either as part of a pro/con argument, or questioning what will happen if archaeological resources exist and are disturbed during the work. Hopefully, I’ll be able to answer some of these questions.


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