Court Square

Court Square in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA, is a park and National Historic District in the heart of Springfield's urban Metro Center neighborhood. Court Square is the City of Springfield's only topographical constant since its founding in 1636. It is bounded by Court Street, Main Street, State Street, East Columbus Avenue, and features Elm Street and a scenic pedestrian-only walkway from the courthouse toward Springfield's historic Old First Church.

Springfield's Old First Church has been located in Court Square since the 17th century. It was the twentieth parish formed in the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and was gathered in 1637, the year after Springfield was founded. The first meetinghouse was erected just east of this site in 1645. The current Old First Church (b. 1819) is the fourth building on this site, built by a Northampton architect, Isaac Damon. The rooster weathervane on the steeple was crafted by a Coppersmith in London, England, and brought to this country in 1750. Here inventor Thomas Blanchard and abolitionist John Brown worshipped; Daniel Webster spoke; and Jenny Lind sang.

In 1902, the year of the city's golden jubilee, $100,000 was raised in public donations to fund a project extending Court Square to the Connecticut River, spurred by a donation of $10,000 by the estate of the late Tilly Haynes, one of Springfield's most active citizens. In the late 1950s, Haynes' contribution was undermined when Court Square was separated from the Connecticut River by the construction of the elevated Interstate 91, and a 1,754 car parking lot beneath it.

The ornate, gothic stone Court House – now the juvenile court house – to the left of the church, was designed by renowned architect H.H. Richardson and built in 1909. To the right of the church, the Springfield Municipal Group was erected in 1911-13, and dedicated by United States President William Howard Taft in December 1913. In his dedication speech, President Taft praised the Springfield Municipal Group as "one of the most distinctive civic centers in the United States - and indeed, the world." The Municipal Group features a 300 ft. tall Italianate Campanile, which until the early 1970s, was the tallest building in Springfield (as per moratorium on skyscrapers in Springfield by the Massachusetts State Legislature.)

In 2010, UMass Amherst located its Urban Design Program to the Byers Block, across Main Street from the MassMutual Center. 3-7 Elm Street, part of the historic Byers Block, was constructed for James Byers in 1835 by noted architect Simon Sanborn. This remaining part of the Block constitutes the oldest commercial building still standing in Springfield. The building has served several functions throughout the years. These range from the Elm Street Tree Shop (which occupied the ground floor from 1866–1906) to the offices of several notable Springfield citizens, including George Bancroft, George Ashmun, Reuben Chapman, 12 Springfield judges and 7 Springfield mayors.

West of the Byers Block, the Romanesque Revival Court Square Building was originally a hotel and a renowned theater. A sixth floor was added to the building in 1900, including a tower that graces the elevator penthouse at the eastern end. The hotel became offices by the 1930s; however, the Court Square Playhouse remained the city's premier live theater until its surprise demolition in 1957. The Court Square Building features a brown brick exterior relieved with details of brownstone, terra-cotta, and granite. The Court Square building is scheduled for a multi-million renovation in 2012, after which it will include "a mix of retail, office and residential uses."

Other articles related to "court square":

Court Square (New York City Subway)
... Court Square is a station complex on the IND Crosstown Line, the IRT Flushing Line and the IND Queens Boulevard Line of the New York City Subway ... The complex is located in the vicinity of One Court Square in Long Island City, Queens and served by the 7, E, and G trains at all times M train on weekdays ... opening of the Citibank office tower at One Court Square, a passageway was built underneath connecting the Queens Boulevard and Crosstown stations ...
First Church Of Christ, Congregational (Springfield, Massachusetts)
... of the City of Springfield, four incarnations of the Old First Church have stood at Springfield's Court Square since 1637, the year following Springfield's founding by Puritan ... to the Register, (the first was the Federal Springfield Armory.) The church is within the Court Square Historic District The following paragraph, written by Springfield architect Eugene C ... small part of our best architectural growth has been adjacent to Court square, and other churches have shared the burdens and responsibilities of directing our temporal as well as spiritual concerns, the ...
Metalmark Capital - History
... groups from other leading investment banks including JPMorgan Chase (CCMP Capital), Citigroup (Court Square Capital Partners), Deutsche Bank (MidOcean Partners) and Credit Suisse First Boston ... equity group, CVC Equity Partners had completed a spinout from Citigroup in 2006 to form Court Square Capital Partners ... Citigroup disposed of its remaining interest in Court Square following the purchase of Metalmark ...
Court Square Capital Partners
... Court Square Capital Partners is a private equity firm focused on leveraged buyout transactions ... Court Square was originally a captive private equity firm within Citigroup known as Citigroup Venture Capital Equity Partners ... Court Square's investment professionals have invested over $4.5 billion in more than 150 transactions, which have returned $14 billion to date ...

Famous quotes containing the words square and/or court:

    This house was designed and constructed with the freedom of stroke of a forester’s axe, without other compass and square than Nature uses.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    We went on, feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, clothing the soldier, binding up his wounds, harboring the stranger, visiting the sick, ministering to the prisoner, and burying the dead, until that blessed day at Appomattox Court House relieved the strain.
    M. E. W. Sherwood (1826–1903)