Tanvi Maru

Passage Through History

The Rhode Island State House constructed on top of Smith Hill exerts great power – omni-visible, yet isolated from its peoples and the surrounding urban fabric.

Initiating and fostering interactions between visitors to the State House, members of the legislature, people living in the surrounding neighborhoods and the people of Rhode Island would end this isolation by activating the southern State House grounds between the Providence train station and the massive plinth from which the State House rises.

A recreation area designed for all year use and embedded into the park-like setting of the State Capitol grounds invites visitors to slow down, to gather, to rest or to be active, and to connect with nature. Beyond this area, at the foot of the plinth and adjacent to the impressive steps leading up to the State House entrance, the massive, marble clad walls of the plinths are broken open to allow entrance into the exhibition Passage through History utilizing the vast, currently underutilized spaces of the sub-basement, thus creating a connection between the present and the past


View of the Glass structure insertion on the southern grounds of the State Houseuthern side of the building

Proposed Entrance to the State House

Master Plan for Activating the State House Lawn

Bringing people closer to the State House by utilizing the existing lawns and spaces around can generate activity and draw people in. Introducing skate spots and Farmer’s/Flea Market on either side of the Providence train station will bring people uphill. Utilizing the north-east wall of the State House lawn for outdoor movie screening is one of the strategies to keep the lawn active during the nights. Including plaza spaces, seating and gathering spots also will add to the movement within the area. The insertion of the glass structure would allow access to the State House from the ground level making it more approachable, inviting and comfortable to people to feel one with the space


Conceptual master plan

Proposed Master Plan for the site

Passage Through History

Passage through History depicting the complex past of Providence and the State of Rhode Island, articulating the mechanics of governance, discussing the socio-cultural diversities of the State’s people, and addressing the failures regarding justice, social equity and inclusion is proposed as a didactic, immersive exhibition, accessible to all. Space is provided for temporary exhibitions by students and contemporary artists whose work is rooted in the fabric of Rhode Island.


Site longitudinal section

Section through the Museum Spaces and Student Center at the Sub basement levels

Snow Town and State House

The State House was built on the land of Snow town. To Acknowledge its presence and its people, creating a space right under the staircase at the sub basement level , a walk through the arches and load bearing columns by retaining the existing walls and creating a glass walkway leading to an immersive experience of the whole space with varying ceiling heights.


View of the arches and path to leading to the history space

Entrance to the snow town history museum space