The Secret Life of Power and Water

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What would your life be like without electricity? Or without clean water? Over the last century we have come to assume that reliable and affordable utilities will be there for us without a lot of thought about the complex systems that handle electricity, water, natural gas, and waste. However, as our infrastructure ages, cities grow, and we demand solutions that are both attractive and environmentally responsible, careful design of the replacement and expansion of these systems is needed more than ever.

Join KITE Architects’ Albert Garcia, AIA and Christine West, AIA for a look behind the scenes at the complex and sometimes unexpected set of design challenges and innovative features of two of KITE’s highly visible utility projects:

- The South Street Substation in Downtown Providence, which is the largest indoor substation to be built in New England in over 40 years, and serves all of downtown and the new I-195 parcels.

- The Narragansett Bay Commission’s Headquarters at Field’s Point, including overall master planning and an education center surrounded by rain gardens that demonstrate storm water management.

These events are being recorded and photographed. By attending, you give your consent to be photographed, filmed, taped, and/or recorded.


Albert and Christine both moved to Providence after careers in Washington DC, New York, and Boston, and started working together at KITE in 2003. They immediately began a productive collaboration that plays to each other’s strengths, and assumed leadership roles culminating in their ownership of the firm in 2008. Led by Principals Albert Garcia, AIA, and Christine West, AIA, KITE Architects has grown into a respected leader in Southeast New England since its founding in 1974 by William L. Kite, FAIA, now retired.

Christine West

KITE Architects

Christine received her B.Arch from Carnegie Mellon and worked as an architect for nearly a decade in the Washington, DC region before completing post-professional graduate work at Harvard. Her career as an architect has spanned a variety of project types from large complexes to small renovations with a priority on effective management and technical excellence. Heavily involved in a number of community and professional organizations, Christine has been Chair of the Providence City Plan Commission since 2012, is the Architect member of the Providence Building Board of Review and was most recently appointed President of the Providence Revolving Fund, of which she has been a member since 2009.

Albert Garcia, AIA

KITE Architects

Albert received his M.Arch. degree from the University of Pennsylvania where he received numerous awards and recognition for his design abilities and later worked with the internationally recognized firms of Office dA in Boston, and KieranTimberlake in Philadelphia. From his work with these firms, Albert has developed extensive experience developing innovative design solutions for educational institutions, private residences, as well as restoration and adaptive reuse projects.