It’s hard to remember a time when the high-rise apartment buildings once known as Cedar Square West were thought to look cool. But they were — so cool that they became the exterior location of Mary’s apartment in later seasons of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” in the 1970s. They never fulfilled architect Ralph Rapson’s vision of transformed urban life, and eventually took on a grim, East Berlin vibe. That made them a handy location for “Ana’s Playground,” a locally produced short film that’s getting raves at film festivals.
The complex, now known as Riverside Plaza, has recently won historic designation, which should help it qualify for tax credits to support a badly needed renovation. Look for a return of the brightly colored random panels that were a signature of the buildings’ design. They should make every bit as much sense now as they did then.
Back in 2008, All Things Considered host Tom Crann visited the set of ‘Ana’s Playground’ to speak with director Eric Howell.