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Doris Duke Monument Foundation’s Revitalization of Queen Anne Square

The project, designed by Maya Lin, is set to be completed next Spring.

The Doris Duke Monument Foundation (DDMF) announced today that the a gift to the City of Newport, are officially underway. 

DDMF’s renewed plans for Queen Anne Square were designed by world renowned artist Maya Lin. Entitled “The Meeting Room,” the installation includes three small, shallow foundations to illustrate the history of the property and provide community gathering spots. Construction of the project is being completed almost entirely by local Newport and Rhode Island companies and contractors, including the foundation’s stone carvings by Newport artist and stone carver Nick Benson. 

The $3.5 million enhancement of the park, which was approved by a 5-1 vote by the Newport City Council last December, brings more green space, seating, trees and additional lighting to Queen Anne Square, at no cost to the Newport taxpayers. The project is intended to honor the memory of Doris Duke, who championed Newport’s historic preservation, and as a tribute to the effect of historic preservation as a catalyst for community revitalization. 

“Our number one goal has always been to provide a safer, cleaner, and more welcoming park for Newport and its visitors,” said Pieter Roos, Executive Director of the DDMF. “After gathering more public input and support for our plans, we are more confident than ever that this goal will be met.” 

Roos added, “This is an important milestone in helping us renew Doris Duke’s vision for Queen Anne Square and the City of Newport. We look forward to the next phase of the project and completion of the park next spring.” 

Work on the project commenced on October 10 after DDMF and the City of Newport received a Remedial Approval Letter (RAL) from the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) on October 9. 

The RIDEM approval letter, which can be seen on the RIDEM website, came after a thorough environmental evaluation which included soil testing, an extensive public comment period, and ultimately the submission of a Remedial Action Work Plan (RAWP). 

With soil remediation and construction in process, final completion of the project remains on schedule for Spring 2013. Improvements to the park include free wi-fi, extensive public seating, eight additional trees and enhanced, environmentally friendly lighting. 

Dale Clark October 12, 2012 at 10:46 AM
This gift to the City is A violation of the deed restrictions stated clearly in the transfer of this property to the City of Newport,no buildings real or false foundations are to be erected in this park.This park was a gift to citizens of Newport and intrusted to the City to preserve and protect.The foundations designed by Maya Lin were erected at A beautiful park in Akron,Ohio Bicenttinnal park on the Ohio University.This design destroyed there once beautiful park. This so called gift to Newport was none other then A trojan-horse with dollars attached to entice the city officials to bite on this take-over of our gift park .They are now cutting the life out of our beautiful trees on the landscape (the public was told they were going to have the trees relocated)?I dug through the land trust office and presented the deed to the council and expressed my very concerns about the deed restrictions.I also got the D.E.M onto them about the soil contaminated.These open pits will become breeding ground for all types of insects and cause safty and health issues.This is A great example of why the public must stay engaged with the issues that involve ouur city.Vote for change on the Council at Large seats show them we care about our City by the Sea.

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