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Good thing he already had a camera

What's left of Newtonville Camera

Nathan Aranow peered through the front windows of what used to be Newtonville Camera on Walnut Street in Newton. Developer Robert Korff is tearing down the entire block at Walnut and Washington streets for one of those trendy mixed-use development things.

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in Waltham. But unfortunately Karoun on the corner is gone for good.

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Newtonville Camera is now in Waltham.
Newtonville Books is now in Newton Centre.

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Newtonville Books moved to Newton Centre long before the redevelopment (which I know, because for a year or so, I did pretty much daily freelance work in two of the buildings being torn down, including the one with the camera store and would drive by the bookstore on my way home).

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Newtonville Camera is a fantastic business. Back in high school at North, we had a photo department, and bought many of our darkroom supplies there (I think we bought film from the school, but if we wanted good paper, we went there to get it). Paul always gave a student discount. He's also been able to adapt the business as film and film processing has disappeared completely in a decade (although North apparently still has a darkroom and photography classes). I wish them the best.

It's sad to see some of the long-time businesses there leave, but good to see Newton building some more housing. The region has a housing crisis, and cities and towns like Newton, which have good transit access (which could be better with better rail service and accessible, modern stations), walkable neighborhoods and some room in underutilized areas like this, building more housing. Boston, Cambridge and Somerville can't shoulder it all. More people living in Newtonville should, hopefully, lead to successful ground-floor businesses to take Newtonville Camera's place.

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I too grew up with Newtonville Camera (although I went to South)! Agree with Ari 98%, the 2% being that film is not dead! It's still in use by students and enthusiasts, and there are a good amount of local labs at which to process it. I suspect film's unique form factor, visual and processing properties will make sure it's around for a long time.

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But in 2002, we did digital manipulation by scanning negatives. DSLRs weren't that good (or if they were, they were super-expensive). Point and shoots were pretty bad. Camera phones were laughable.

I have an unfortunate amount of B&W film in contact sheets somewhere which will never see the light of day, so to speak.

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I too bought photo paper for Mr. Morrison's photo classes at this fine store and was given many a student discount in the process. It's bittersweet to see this picture because I have many fond memories of that place and the very friendly people who work(ed) there, but the housing is badly needed and this is actually a great place for it. I can't wait to see what ends up opening in the new building (and I'm so glad to hear that Newtonville Camera moved and didn't close).

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This is not a story of a big bad developer forcing a small business to leave. Newtonville Camera owner Paul Robert strongly supported Korf's mixed use project and he also received financial support from Korf to move.

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Except people have been developing mixed use buildings forever. Shops with residences over them are pretty common worldwide, and we are going back to this denser form of inhabitation because of the great influx back into cities.

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To your point the new mixed use building is just replacing old mixed use buildings.

The concern though is the new building looks more like a strip mall and the apartments are expected to be typical corp owned rentals fetching $5k a month and up for 2 Br.

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inside the store, without the green cast from fluorescent lighting.

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Assuming the Orr block becomes another apartment complex with retail on the ground floor, it is a desirable spot, with transit and other conveniences nearby.


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