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Raintree21

Rhode Island School of Design

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Apparently Charlotte leaders, BOA, and the wonderful Hugh McColl have been doing quite a bit of work behind everyone's backs. The prestigious Rhode Island School of Design is seriously looking at expanding to Charlotte. This is a very established and highly respectable institution and is considered even bigger than Johnson & Wales, which, coincidently, is also based out of Providence, Rhode Island. The opening of a satellite campus of RISD would bring even more life to downtown since BOA is talking about leasing the Mint Museum of Craft & Design to them and will bring hundreds more young adults into the center city. This will also bring more technical professionals into the Charlotte market and hopefully more corporations will follow. This would be a great coup for the City of Charlotte. More information can be found at http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/stori...y32.html?page=1

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This is very exciting news! Hopefully this will bring a substantial amount of students uptown, and it's good to see the building get another use.

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That is an interesting prospect. No doubt a design school in what is now the old Mint Museum of Craft+Design will do a very good thing for Charlotte and for North Tryon. I had been hoping Bank of America had an evil plan to use that building the bring in a major retailer, but a Design School would be a great idea. It is a shame, though, that we need to pull in a ready-made school from another state rather than growing one from within.

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And will it be called the "Rhode Island" School of Design, even when located in Charlotte? Wonder if they'd change the name and say ...Associated with RISD.

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It'd be nice if they call it Charlotte School of Design. I always thought the city desperately needed a design school.

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Southend would be a great fit....

Great news though, the more shools that locate near uptown the better.

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An RISD here in Charlotte would be awesome. The school has a stellar reputation. It's proximity to Brown and the school itself attracts very artsy and creative kids from a variety of orientations. I think it would definitely give Charlotte a more progressive edge and annoy McCrory. I hope they do set up shop here. Uptown needs more diverse street life beyond business attire.

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This would be an awesome catch for us. While it would be nice to grow our own, having RISD open a branch here would instantly attract insanely talented people, rather than having to build that over time. Having a culinary institute, design school, and UNCC's branch downtown would really boost the city's creative energy.

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If RISD does expand here I would expect it to be called RISD at Charlotte and I would hope so. Their brand is recognized globally and this school would draw students from this area and elsewhere so it would still have a regional identity and capitalize on strong name recoginition. SCAD which is becoming a rival of RISD has done wonders in Savannah over the years and has inspired creativity throughout the city through public and private partnerships. Choosing Charlotte would be a unique choice and go against the the grain of expected locales like Charleston or Asheville. Their presence could give a great boost to Charlotte's design and creative industry. And spark ancillary businesses and art projects complimenting The Bechtler and Wachovia museums. Jeez I need to dial it back a bit but the signs look good so far :thumbsup:

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this is potentially one of the most exciting possibilities for charlotte - i've heard yet. a RISD branch here would do wonders. they should not change or alter the name - as it has been mentioned - their reputation is stellar. i know it is a little weird that the name of the school has a different state's name attached and it would be a slightly cooler/digestable name if it were Pratt or Corcoran - but, still. this would be huge, imo.

i would love to see this uptown - as i feel uptown desperately needs some of this kind of energy, but if that didn't pan out - i think the next choice would be to look into the NorthDavidson district - along the proposed NE light rail. with all the creative energy there - it would not be hard to fit right in and just imagine how packed the future NE LTR would be with students. i mean one LTR corridor with 2 schools on it... wow.

hugh mccoll for mayor!

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I wonder if they would locate next to J&W in 3rd Ward. Since J&W is Rhode Island based it makes sense...and you could have students that take classes at both schools. Just a thought :)

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If RISD does expand here I would expect it to be called RISD at Charlotte and I would hope so. Their brand is recognized globally and this school would draw students from this area and elsewhere so it would still have a regional identity and capitalize on strong name recoginition. SCAD which is becoming a rival of RISD has done wonders in Savannah over the years and has inspired creativity throughout the city through public and private partnerships. Choosing Charlotte would be a unique choice and go against the the grain of expected locales like Charleston or Asheville. Their presence could give a great boost to Charlotte's design and creative industry. And spark ancillary businesses and art projects complimenting The Bechtler and Wachovia museums. Jeez I need to dial it back a bit but the signs look good so far :thumbsup:

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Needless to say this is fantastic news for Charlotte. Having it located either near J&W, or near the new UNCC campus will create great synergy between it and the existing campuses. But really I think the best location might be in South End, where there's already a huge design presence... meaning easy internships and shadowing opportunities for the students. I can't imagine that the South End design studios wouldn't be thrilled to have a RISD campus next door, and vice versa. The LR line also helps greatly because it would allow students to potentially live car-free, at least most of the time, and have direct access to uptown activities.

This might also help further reduce the sense of sterility in the center city... definitely a great change on the horizon.

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Southend would be a great fit....

Great news though, the more shools that locate near uptown the better.

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maybe it would be an even better fit to bring life to North Tryon

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Yes.

No one has really mentioned the NoDa area. They're artsy and funky too. It would bring a lot more life to the area and could in a small way justify speeding up the LRT perhaps.

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I work at RISD. I was a touch annoyed to find out about this in the Providence Business News, but an email did come out from the powers that be this morning. According to the powers that be, the talks are very much preliminary and nothing has been agreed to yet. Before any decisions are made, there will be input on proposals from the faculty and museum staff.

Realistically, I think it would be very difficult for RISD to launch an academic branch in Charlotte, or anywhere outside RI at this time. And I think if it does happen, the scale will be very small. I don't think you'll see anything near the scale of J&W.

The museum could be a different story. The museum is part of the school, but a lot of its funding and budget is very much separate from the school. The museum has a massive collection, and even with an expansion underway here in Providence now, they only have room for a vanishly small fraction of their collection to be on display at any time, plus they bring in a lot of traveling shows. If the numbers worked, I could definately see the museum branching out.

Disclaimer, I am in no way speaking for the school, I have less than any say in what eventually happens.

And just a little lesson so you can feel cool when you talk about it; if you don't know already, RISD is pronounced "Riz-dee." It is almost never called the Rhode Island School of Design, simply Riz-Dee.

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^ thanks for your input, cotuit.

i wonder if this courting doesn't work - if mccoll and gang will try to again with another art and design institute. i hope the RISD comes to fruition, but if it doesn't i hope the drive to land something like this would still go on. charlotte needs something like this... very badly, imo. if we cannot sucessfully court an established institute - i think the powers that be should form a homegrown school. mccoll has a little experience in this type of endeavour - a' la the mccoll business school @ queens.

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^ Speaking of Queens, an inside source tells me that their board is seriously considering a vote to rename it "Charlotte University". Apparently they have run into branding problems with the Queens University of Charlotte moniker and are looking to capitalize on the lack of an existing CU.

IMO, this is courting a lawsuit from the UNCC athletic department, which has been branding their program as "Charlotte" for several years now.

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Not to get off topic, I hope they retain 'Queen's College' moniker for their Arts and Science program as other schools do that have a new ____ University name.

I also hope that RISD chooses a localized name somehow for their Charlotte branch in the hypothetical case that they opt to come here.

I'm not sure what else there is to say, but it would be a very good thing for them to come here. A fast growing city like Charlotte doesn't often have the history enough to grow local schools that have been well funded long enough to have a reputation and successful model. I think it is fair, under those conditions, to have schools brought in from other places.

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Have there been any updates on this? I haven't heard anything about it for a while.

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