Greater City Providence

Say (W)hat?


The W Hotel website lists Providence as Coming in 2010. It did not do this before. Last we heard, W was the hotel that was going to be at OneTen Westminster Street.

Jef Nickerson

Jef is Greater City Providence's co-founder, editor, and publisher. He grew up on Cape Cod and lived in Boston; Portland, Maine; and New York before settling in Providence. In addition to urbanism, Jef is interested in art, design, and ice cream. Please feel free to contact Jef if you have any question or comments about Greater City Providence.


  • Huh… That’s interesting. I hope it’s true and not an example of a PR dept not knowing what’s happening in the development office.

    As an aside, why is Providence the only city there that seems to need a state clarification on that list, as if it were a foreign country?

    W Atlanta
    W Hoboken
    W Bangkok, Thailand
    W Providence, RI


  • ^ Maybe they think Rhode Island is a country.

    The city tells me that W is committed to a hotel in Providence at the OneTen site, financing is still being worked out.

  • “W”‘s communication dept, in a reply to my e-mail asking when and where, said, “The W Providence is not opening until September 1, 2010. The address I’m showing is 110 Westminster Street.”

  • Not for nothing, but I’m pretty sure that in the almost four years we’ve been talking about the OneTen Westminster site, W has never put a “Coming Soon Providence” on their website. I’m not gonna read through the 106 pages on UrbanPlanet about it, but I’m pretty sure that’s the case.

    One wonders what the internal trigger is for posting such information publicly.

  • They also have a place on the website for sending in “preconstruction” job applications for the Providence site as well… Again, don’t want to get our hopes up, but it is interesting all of this is there.

  • They probably heard that Granoff is going to tear down the Arcade for their valet parking.


  • Isn’t Granoff somehow involved with this project with Blue Chip? Or did they have a falling out, or did someone give up their stake? I can’t remember now. Might have to read the 106 pages on UrbanPlanet.

  • I can’t remember… I hope there is still some connection, as realistically, doing something with 110/W was always the Arcade’s best hope for some secured future relevance.

  • Yes, I think Granoff’s ‘plan’ to attract a single tenant to the Arcade is foolhardy, but I’ve often thought the utilizing the 110 parcel to create a larger anchor for the Arcade could work. If something like a Barnes & Noble were on the 110 site with openings into the north side of the Arcade, it could provide an anchor for the smaller retail spaces throughout the rest of the Arcade.

  • All I know is that I’ll be excited if the city suddenly has a place with complimentary green apples and cucumber-infused water.

    Although, at least in the Union Square one, they charge 34 cents a minute for internet.

  • I’ve always thought Barnes & Noble would work well for the Arcade as a single retailer (and, given Border’s troubles nationally, there could be an opening in the market soon…). Lack of parking might scare them away, though (unless that parking garage were just used for paying B&N customers…). I might fear for Symposium, but they have almost no overlap with a mainstream bookstore in what they do… B&N has also occupied some oddly configured, historic spaces before, like an old theater in Rochester, MN:

    Again, fingers crossed…

  • Where do the Barnes & Noble shoppers in Rochester park?

    As for Symposium, I think having more book readers coming Downcity would probably help them. People at the mall may consider Symposium if they can’t find what they want at Borders, but consider it too much of a hassle to walk downtown. If you’re already on Westminster, a 2 block walk is much more reasonable for the average person.

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