Thanks to Tony Sampas for these photos and the accompanying text . . .
On Saturday May 7, 2016, under the leadership of Mehmed Ali PhD four scholars represented UMass Lowell at: “Reclaiming Urban Renewal: Community Efforts and Impacts in Lawrence, Massachusetts and Other Industrial Cities.”
The group’s session was entitled: “Neighbors No More – Urban Renewal Comparisons and Research Methods in Lawrence and Lowell”
Besides Mehmed Ali, the presenters were Fabiane Kelley, B.A. in History, UMass Lowell Honors College UMass Lowell Libraries; Zachary Najarian‐Najafi, Undergraduate Student, UMass Lowell; Tony Sampas, MLIS, Archivist UMass Lowell Libraries.
From the Symposium Program Guide:
“The overarching theme of the session is on how urban renewal was executed in these two post‐industrial cities and how local governments’ decisions impacted the communities they intended to serve. Presenters will analyze how the strong momentum of federal policies connected to substantial amounts of funds created an inexorable yet challenged drive towards the traditional urban renewal approach of knocking neighborhoods down. We will look at how the research for the studies was gathered and ask the question: “What do the existing archives tell and what might they hide?” Four participants will focus on different aspects of the urban renewal narrative.
o Kelley will present on the 1958 Common‐Valley‐Concord urban renewal project in Lawrence.
o Ali will discuss the urban renewal and city planning processes for Lowell during the key decades of the mid‐20th century, with a comparison to some of the key features of Lawrence’s narrative.
o Najarian‐Najafi will showcase his work in creating an interactive website documenting Lowell’s Little Canada before its demolition.
o Sampas will tie all of the presentations together by discussing how the panelists conducted their research and how others might utilize a variety of unique archival resources to help tell the story of urban renewal.”