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Holyoke, in Western Massachusetts, was planned and build in the mid-nineteenth century as a manufacturing city around three main power canals with urban brick construction. The city is one of the first planned industrial communities in the United States. It also is the birth-place of Volleyball.

Nowadays, the city unfortunately is known mostly for its high poverty and crime rates and abundance of abandoned brick buildings. The latter look quite good in the evening sun though (see the workshop for a more straightforward view of the place).

Much of the original Early Industrial fabric remains intact, including Greek Revival style textile mills and row housing at Great Falls Dam, period warehouses and railroad sheds along Race Street canal, Italianite business blocks on Main and High Streets and early Catholic Church and schools around Hampden Park.

Some facts on Holyoke:

First European settlement: early XVIII century
City charter: 1848
Water power potential: the greatest theoretical waterpower potential of any site in New England
Manufacturing peak: early XXth century
All time highest population (>60,000): late 1920's
Current population: around 40,000
Current households under the poverty line: >25%
Current single mother households: ~ 25%
Children qualifying for subsidized lunches: ~70%
Late night red traffic-light policy: don't stop!...

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Additional Photos by Kristaps KL (zmey) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1234 W: 95 N: 1748] (7335)
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