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Providence PARK(ing) DAY – September 19, 2014

union-studio-parklet

Union Studio‘s parklet last year. Photo by Rachel Playe

From Rhode Island Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects:


September 19, 2014 8:00am – 4:00pm

Come out and join us for the second annual PARK(ing) Day Providence!

This year, PARK(ing) Day Providence will have 32 parklets in Downtown, the West Side, and the East Side and a protected bike lane on Broadway. We can’t express our thanks enough to the Downtown Improvement District, the West Broadway Neighborhood Association, the Department of Public Works, the City of Providence, and all of our amazing sponsors.

Check out the maps to plan your tour of the parklets on the 19th!

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Providence Geeks – September 17, 2014

Providence Geeks Providence Geeks
Wednesday, September 17th, 5:30 – 8pm
AS220, 115 Empire Street, Providence, RI
FREE (buy your own food and drink – it’s cheap)
RSVP at Facebook

Welcome back, everyone! Hope you had an awesome August. Providence Geeks goes back to school next week with an excellent September presenter.

What percent of live events sell out? 50%? 20%? Nope… try 2%.

crowdsurfFounded in 2013 by two recent Brown grads, Providence-based Crowdsurf aims to remedy this situation using a combination of geographic and social audience info. Armed with these insights, Crowdsurf’s customers — event venues and promoters — have a much better sense of which acts to book, and how to most effectively promote them.

big-ticketAs the first stage of their rollout this summer, Crowdsurf launched Big Ticket, a mobile app that offers users the chance to reap major discounts on show tickets. The app — currently being piloted in RI, MA, CT and OR — has already enabled Crowdsurf to build one of the largest databases of audience info in the Northeast.

On Wednesday, Co-founders CEO Alex Oberg and CTO Evan Altman will tell the Crowdsurf story, demo their impressive platform, and give a sneak peek at where they’re headed next.

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A Better World by Design Conference – September 19-21, 2014

abwxd-002

Students from Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design host seventh annual A Better World by Design Conference

Each fall, A Better World by Design (ABWxD) brings a global community of students, academics, and professionals to Providence, Rhode Island in order to reach across disciplines and unite under a common goal: building a better world. Organized by students from Brown and RISD, ABWxD brings together cutting edge alternative content and introduces the next generation of design pioneers. ABWxD rethinks what a conference can actually do.

What: A Better World by Design Conference
Who: Ellen Jorgensen, Co-founder and Executive Director of Genspace • Sarah Williams, Director of Civic Data Design Lab • Melissa Mongiat, Founder of Daily Tous Les Jours • Brian House, media artist • Michael Ben-Eli, Founder of the Sustainability Laboratory • and many more
When: Friday September 19 to Sunday September 21
Where: Campuses of Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD)
Why: 2014 attendees can expect the largest lineup yet, drawing from fields such as mapping, interactive art, design policy, and DIY biology. The theme this year is wayfinding, describing a collective design process used to solve social challenges.

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195 Redevelopment District Commission Meeting – September 15, 2014

featured-195commission A meeting of the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission will be held at Rhode Island Commerce Corporation, 315 Iron Horse Way, Providence, Rhode Island, on MONDAY, September 15, 2014, beginning at 5 P.M., for the following purposes

I. Public Session

  1. Welcome by Chairperson: Chairperson Colin Kane.
  2. Approval of the Minutes of the Commission Meetings Held on August 18, 2014.
  3. Executive Director’s Report – Review of Activities During Past Month and Business Plan for the Period September – December 2014.
  4. Presentation of District Audit by LGCD, District Auditor, and Vote Regarding Acceptance of Audit.
  5. Update from Jones Lang LaSalle on Market Conditions and Strategies for October 15, 2014 RFI Submission Date.
  6. Update from DOT Director Lewis on Work Progress on I-195 Surplus Land.
  7. Discussion and Review of Draft Parks Maintenance and Management Budget.
  8. Discussion and Vote on Allocation of Funds from the EPA Grant to the District.
  9. Update from Counsel Regarding District Permitting Process and Legal Issues Subcommittee.
  10. II. Executive Session

    To consider and act upon such matters as may be considered at a meeting closed to the public pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws, Section 42-46-5(a) (the Open Meetings Law), specifically matters permitted to be so considered under subsection (5) (acquisition and disposition of public property).

  11. Review of Status of Proposals to Purchase and Develop District Property.
  12. III. Public Session

  13. Chairman’s Report – Review of Activities in Past Month and Proposed Future Activities/ Tentative Agenda for October 20, 2014 Meeting.
  14. Vote to Adjourn.

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UPDATED: City Plan Commission Meeting – September 16, 2014

featured-bikeped City Plan Commission Meeting
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 – 4:45pm
444 Westminster Street, First Floor

Opening Session

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Approval of minutes from the August 19th meeting – for action
  • Director’s Report

City Council Referral

1. Referral 3382 – Petition to abandon a portion of Stanhope Street – The applicant intends to abandon the portion of Stanhope Street adjacent to AP 97 Lot 12 to add to the area of the lot – for action (Charles)

The Orange Street abandonment has been removed from the CPC Agenda.

orange-street

Orange Street from Weybosset Street. Image from Google Street View

2. Referral 3384 – Petition to abandon a portion of Orange Street – The applicant intends to abandon the portion of Orange Street located between Weybosset and Middle Street and between AP 20 lots 131 and 135 – for action (Downtown)

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2014 Mayoral Candidate Survey – Michael Solomon (D)

Michael Solomon’s survey was returned to us this morning a week late, we’ve decided to post it for the benefit of the voters.

Michael Solomon (D)

solomonWebsite: solomonforpvd.com
Facebook: SolomonForPVD
Twitter: @solomonforpvd

Survey

1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

Close to home, I think there are things to learn from Boston. While a much larger city, Boston has created partnerships with its universities and health care institutions that we should seek to emulate here. Whether negotiating payments in lieu of taxes, community investments, or infrastructure improvements, Boston is an excellent model of good relations with its tax exempts. These positive partnerships are also reflected in the success Boston has in retaining college graduates, as so much innovation and job development is connected to its educational and health care institutions.

Portland, Oregon is always cited as a model of good planning, because of its think-outside-the-box approach to transportation, land use, and urban revitalization. In fact, Portland’s streetcar, which transformed the city’s Pearl District, was used as reference as we considered our own streetcar system in Providence. The relationship between fixed rail lines, and economic investment and development along those lines is well-documented, and something Providence hopes to emulate. By connecting the city’s largest employment areas–from the hospitals through the Jewelry District, and to Thayer Street–Providence seeks to replicate Portland’s success in spurring economic growth along the proposed streetcar corridor. Portland is definitely a city we can look to for continued inspiration to reduce our dependency on cars, and to embrace a bike-friendly, pedestrian-friendly city.

Denver, Colorado has invested substantially in transit-oriented development, and has transformed a historic area of its Downtown, including the creation of an inter-modal transportation hub at its renovated Union Station. This public-private investment is impressive, and while the scale is vast, Providence can learn from the focused vision, intent, and good planning tools Denver has employed to attract young people, become more walkable and livable, spur economic growth, reinvest in neglected areas, and build on its cultural and creative strengths. Denver also has started a pilot program to ensure that affordable housing is created/maintained when the city expands or develops mass transit. They created an acquisition fund for this purpose, which could become a model for other cities.


2. Snow Removal
The city has an ordinance that states that the abutting property owner must remove snow from sidewalks. This ordinance has gone under-enforced for years creating a major public safety issue for the city’s residents every time it snows. The city and the state are notable offenders in not clearing snow from sidewalks abutting their property (sidewalks abutting parks, public buildings, on overpasses, etc.). How will you hold private property owners, the state, and the City itself accountable for removing snow in a timely fashion, and how will you ensure that snow removal ordinances are enforced?

We constantly encountered this issue in the City Council office, particularly along our main streets. I quickly discovered that when it was a residential or commercial property adjacent to the sidewalk, most property owners were unaware of their responsibilities. As a result, the City Council office sent seasonal communications to property owners to inform them of their responsibilities. Stronger communication and greater access to information is always the first choice. Our inspectors should also be on the lookout for repeat offenders, who again, may not realize it is their responsibility to clear the sidewalk. In the end, public safety cannot be jeopardized, so I would support a measure to have DPW clear the sidewalk and then charge the property owner for the cost associated with clearing the sidewalk.

As far as State and City property is concerned, we are talking about accountability and management. Our first priority is to clear city streets, but snow covered sidewalks pose an equally dangerous threat to pedestrians following a snowstorm. We cannot have our pedestrians–especially students–forced into the road because the City and State have failed to clear an overpass. Through better management of our Department of Public Works we can have cleaner, safer sidewalks in the winter. Similarly, the Department of Public Works should enter into an agreement to clear the snow from sidewalks adjacent to State roads–for example, highway overpasses and bump outs at on and off ramps. It is simply unrealistic to expect the State to clear the snow, and someone should shoulder the responsibility and make sure the job gets done.


3. Street Parking Permits and Snow
The City recently ended its longtime ban on overnight parking introducing a permit system for City residents to park on the street overnight. Allowing residents to park on the street relieves the need to provide off-street parking in paved lots and yards. Reducing this paved area has numerous environmental and quality of life benefits. Unfortunately the City bans parking during heavy snow with no options for people parking on the street, forcing the need for off-street spaces during these storms. Other cities, including Boston, allow street parking during storms, banning parking only on designated emergency snow routes. Would you support allowing people with permits to park on designated streets during snowstorms?

This all comes down to public safety and street width. When the City enacted overnight parking, it designated parking based upon street width because of public safety concerns that arose from congestion. I would want to have a similar conversation with the Traffic Engineer and public safety officials to determine what streets could accommodate such a program. It is certainly counter productive to have an on-street parking program that cannot sustain itself through the winter.


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Downtown Design Review Committee Meeting – September 8, 2014

featured-drc Downtown Design Review Committee
Monday, September 8, 2014 – 4:45pm
Department of Planning and Development, 1st Floor Conference Room 444 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903

benevolent

Image from Google Street View

Opening Session

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Approval of Meeting Minutes of July 14, 2014

New Business

1. DRC Application No. 14.16: 1 Chestnut Street (Beneficent House) – Public Hearing Proposal by Beneficent House to replace existing exterior signage on site with a new, consistent signage system. The applicant also requests a waiver from D-1 Regulations prohibiting freestanding signs. The proposal includes the installation of two new freestanding signs, one of which is replacing an existing freestanding sign.

Adjournment


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Capital Center Commission Meeting – September 10, 2014

featured-capital-center Capital Center Commission Meeting
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 • 12:00 noon
Joseph A. Doorley, Jr. Municipal Building
444 Westminster Street, 1st Floor Conference Room Providence, RI 02903

capital-center-parking

Image from Bing Maps

  1. Roll Call
  2. Minutes
    Approval of Meeting Minutes of May 14, 2014 and June 11, 2014
  3. Ratification of Approvals
    Ratification of approvals from the June 11, 2014 CCC meeting
  4. Parcels 3E, 3W, 4E and 4W: Parking Lots
    Request for extension of interim parking lot approvals
    Presenter: Todd Turcotte, Capital Properties
  5. Report of the Chairman
    – Waterplace Park
    – Transit Infrastructure Bond Referendum
  6. Adjournment

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I-195 Redevelopment District Commission – Parks Design Subcommittee Meeting – September 12, 2014

featured-195commission A meeting of the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission – Parks Design Subcommittee will be held at Rhode Island Commerce Corporation, 315 Iron Horse Way, Providence, Rhode Island, on Friday, September 12, 2014, beginning at 1:30 P.M., for the following purposes
The time for this meeting has been changed to 2:30pm

Public Session

  • I-195 Redevelopment Commission: Commissioners Barbara Hunger, John Kelly, Diana Johnson
  • Jan Brodie, Executive Director
  • Department of Transportation: Lambri Zerva
  • Architects and Engineers: David Freeman, CDR Maguire

Call to Order

  1. Approval of the Minutes of the Parks Design Subcommittee Meeting held on August 19, 2014.
  2. West Side Park: Pavilion – Bathrooms – separate or within single structure, number
    – Further discussion concerning storage and concession
    – Write up a Program of Uses
    – Discussion of contracting for additional scope for alternate designs
  3. Response to Public Comment from August 19, 2014 meeting, including water access
  4. Connections to CityWALK, bicycle lanes, WaterFire, River Walk in connection with South Street Landing
  5. Vote to Adjourn.

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Election News & Information

election-2014

  • The Providence Phoenix is out with their Primary Endorsements
  • ProJo reports on who does and who does not face a Primary challenger among the Providence City Councilors
  • The Rhode Island Bicycle Coalition has their candidate statements from the Gubernatorial and Providence Mayoral Candidates
  • And in case you missed it, we have surveys returned from three Mayoral Candidates
When and where do you vote (hint, the Primary is September 9th)? the Secretary of State’s Office has you covered.
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→ PBN: JWU reveals $40M academic building plan for Jewelry District

jwu-jd

Johnson & Wales University Monday unveiled plans for a new $40 million academic building on former Interstate 195 land in Providence’s Jewelry District.

The building will sit at the corner of Friendship and Chestnut Streets and serve the university’s School of Engineering and Design and College of Arts and Sciences, Johnson & Wales said in a news release.

Very exciting! This will also free up their building at the corner of Westminster and Mathewson for other uses.

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2014 Mayoral Candidate Survey – Jorge Elorza (D)

Jorge Elorza (D)

ElorzaPhotoWebsite: elorzaformayor.com
Phone: 401-400-2430
Email: info@elorzaformayor.com
Facebook: JorgeElorzaforMayor
Twitter: @ElorzaForMayor

Bio

Jorge Elorza is a Providence native, former Housing Court Judge, law professor, accountant, and community activist. He grew up on the West End, the son of Guatemalan immigrants, and graduated Classical High School before going on to URI and Harvard Law. The murder of a childhood friend brought him back to Providence from a promising career on Wall Street, and he has dedicated his life to serving the community ever since. He is running for Mayor to make sure that the opportunities that gave him a pathway out of poverty are passed on to the next generation of Providence kids.

Survey

1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

I look to many cities around the country as models for what Providence can and should do. One of the reasons why I want to be mayor in the first place is because I believe that the innovative leadership and substantive changes happening around the world right now are happening at the municipal level, and mayors are at the forefront of this.

Throughout this campaign, I have often referenced other cities as models for best practices and big ideas. In my plan for full service community schools, I looked to Cincinnati’s community schools model as an example for both engaging community partners, and management through its Local School Decision Making Committees. In that same plan, I also pointed to Chicago’s “Grow Your Own Teachers” Initiative as a model for encouraging diversity in our teaching force. Portland, Oregon was truly the model for my Export Providence Plan, which calls for doubling our export economy in the next five years; the Greater Portland Export Initiative was launched to achieve the same goal for that city, and there is much we can learn from it. I have often called for more police to live in the city, and Atlanta’s Secure Neighborhoods Initiative provides some great ideas for incentivizing officers to do so. My arts and culture platform calls for the creation of a weeklong festival in Providence that is directly inspired by Austin, Texas’ South By Southwest festival and the major impact it has made on that city’s economy. If I have the privilege of being elected, I have pledged to accept applications for my transition committees just as Pittsburgh, PA Mayor Bill Peduto has done. Even here in Rhode Island there are cities that inspire me: for instance, to address school funding, the City of Central Falls hired a part time grant writer for its school department at an annual salary of $30,000. In his first year, he brought in $600,000 in outside funding. I would like to add more grant writing staff across Providence’s many departments to help close funding gaps.


2. Snow Removal
The city has an ordinance that states that the abutting property owner must remove snow from sidewalks. This ordinance has gone under-enforced for years creating a major public safety issue for the city’s residents every time it snows. The city and the state are notable offenders in not clearing snow from sidewalks abutting their property (sidewalks abutting parks, public buildings, on overpasses, etc.). How will you hold private property owners, the state, and the City itself accountable for removing snow in a timely fashion, and how will you ensure that snow removal ordinances are enforced?

For private property owners, I will copy the successful example of other cities that maintain a “carrot and stick” approach to enforcing our snow removal ordinance. Exemplary businesses will be rewarded with certificates and neighborhood appreciation events. Businesses that frequently fail to comply with the law will be fined. And, as Mayor, I will ask the General Assembly to enact enabling legislation allowing the City to clear snow on pedestrian sidewalks and lien non- compliant property owners.

At the City level, I believe that many of the enforcement problems are due to the fact that the Department of Public Works has not had a permanent director for over two years. As Mayor, I would commit to hiring a permanent director in my first 90 days.

In general, we need to leverage better tracking and reporting technologies to identify problems, then empower the new Director of Public Works to track response times and manage workflow accordingly.


3. Street Parking Permits and Snow
The City recently ended its longtime ban on overnight parking introducing a permit system for City residents to park on the street overnight. Allowing residents to park on the street relieves the need to provide off-street parking in paved lots and yards. Reducing this paved area has numerous environmental and quality of life benefits. Unfortunately the City bans parking during heavy snow with no options for people parking on the street, forcing the need for off-street spaces during these storms. Other cities, including Boston, allow street parking during storms, banning parking only on designated emergency snow routes. Would you support allowing people with permits to park on designated streets during snow storms?

I am supportive of the idea. I would need to talk more with Public Works, and public safety agencies like the Police and Fire Departments, before committing to making this happen. I would want to know more about the potential problems that might arise and how this would impact efforts to clear snow. If this can be done in a manageable way, I will support it.


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2014 Mayoral Candidate Survey – Chris Young (D)

Chris Young (D)

youngPhone: 401-477-6178
Facebook: Chris Young

Survey

1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

I have the highest aspirations for Providence and this is one of the core reasons I can keep running for public office. I have run now 4 times for Mayor of Providence receiving 26% of the vote in 2006. Our campaign has incorporated ideas for economic development from cities all over the world. I as a candidate believe in taking the best of other cities successes and using them for the benefit of Providence residents. Life is both the physical and spiritual, for what would life mean without both of these? We must not forget God has a role in our success for with God all things are possible.

The first thing we can do for economic development In Providence is we can offer tax incentives like repealing the car tax and also offering businesses, the Universities, hospitals and non-profits the ability to participate in a zero tax program, much like New York state is offering. New York state is offering a zero tax for businesses willing to locate in certain areas when they do co-ventures with the Universities.

The city of Providence will develop and adopt a comprehensive, long-term (at least ten years) fiscal program and vision for the city’s future so that its current and prospective residents, businesses, and institutions will have the confidence to invest in and grow within the city. This program must take into account expenses, revenues, capital and infrastructure needs, the benefits of regionalization and privatization, and future growth. The plan will also establish a strategy for bringing real estate and other taxes in line with comparable regional cities. A residential and commercial property tax reduction will occur. Hospitals and Universities that offer job and business development opportunities for companies who are willing to locate to Providence and bring with them 500 new jobs would get tax abatement opportunities.


2. Snow Removal
The city has an ordinance that states that the abutting property owner must remove snow from sidewalks. This ordinance has gone under-enforced for years creating a major public safety issue for the city’s residents every time it snows. The city and the state are notable offenders in not clearing snow from sidewalks abutting their property (sidewalks abutting parks, public buildings, on overpasses, etc.). How will you hold private property owners, the state, and the City itself accountable for removing snow in a timely fashion, and how will you ensure that snow removal ordinances are enforced?

The state can be fined and cleanup costs can be issued for intentional neglect and the state’s sovereign immunity would not protect the state on intentional neglect.

The city will plow streets and sidewalks in the future much like what is done in New York state. A fee will be assessed on private or public property that has received 3 or more warnings in one season. The fee will act as a lien after three years of non payment but will be waived for good cause. We will have citywide sidewalk plowing after the city is solvent.

The City of Rochester provides supplemental service to help property owners clear their sidewalks during a substantial winter storm and we can adopt some of it’s practices. Rochester is one of the few cities in the United States to provide this service to its residents and it is outlined as follows from Rochester city government.

Sidewalk Snow Plowing Facts

  • The City begins plowing sidewalks once new snowfall exceeds 3″.
  • The City plows all sidewalks that are at least five feet in width.
  • Each sidewalk plow run takes about five hours to complete.
  • The City plows 878 miles of sidewalks. These miles are divided into distinct sidewalk plow runs of approximately 15 miles.
  • Depending on the severity of a storm, sidewalk snow plowing policies must sometimes be altered meet the needs of the situation.
  • The City uses private contractors to plow sidewalks.
  • Sidewalk plowing usually happens in the evening and early morning when pedestrian traffic is lowest, but this schedule is modified to respond to actual storm conditions.

Fees

  • Sidewalk snow plowing is financed by an embellishment fee on your property tax bill that is based on the front footage of a property.
  • Embellishment fees, charges for specific services, are included on the annual property tax bill. The fees are based on a property’s front footage. To figure out an embellishment charge, the embellishment rate is multiplied by the property’s front footage. For corner properties, the front footage comprises 1/3 of the longer side’s footage plus the full footage of the lot’s shorter side.

3. Street Parking Permits and Snow
The City recently ended its longtime ban on overnight parking introducing a permit system for City residents to park on the street overnight. Allowing residents to park on the street relieves the need to provide off-street parking in paved lots and yards. Reducing this paved area has numerous environmental and quality of life benefits. Unfortunately the City bans parking during heavy snow with no options for people parking on the street, forcing the need for off-street spaces during these storms. Other cities, including Boston, allow street parking during storms, banning parking only on designated emergency snow routes. Would you support allowing people with permits to park on designated streets during snow storms?

Yes, our campaign would adopt the Boston parking policy during snow storms and we support allowing people with permits to park on designated streets during snow storms. I lived in Boston during my college years at Boston University and found the parking program easy and effective.


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2014 Mayoral Candidate Survey – Daniel S. Harrop, M.D. (R)

Daniel S. Harrop, M.D. (R)

harropWebsite: Harrop.org
Phone: 401-390-2790
Email: HarropVictory@gmail.com
Facebook: Dr. Daniel Harrop
Twitter: @DanHarrop

Bio

Dr. Dan Harrop is a native of West Warwick, RI. He received his B.A., M.D. and post-doctoral training in Psychiatry at Brown University, and his M.B.A. from Heriott-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland. Retired from nearly 30 years as a faculty member at both the Harvard and Brown University Medical Schools, he is currently a consultant for several major insurance organizations, including ValueOptions, BHM Healthcare, and Focus Behavioral Health. Dr. Harrop is Chairman of the R.I. Center for Freedom and Prosperity, a 501c3 research policy institute, and President of the Roosevelt Society, a 501c4 social welfare advocacy organization.

Survey

1. Other Cities
It isn’t always necessary to reinvent the wheel when it comes to best practices. Across the globe small cities like Providence are doing amazing things to make their cities more livable, increase their tax base, and improve services. What city (or cities) do you look to for inspiration of what you would like Providence to be like or to strive for? What are the characteristics of those cities that you think Providence should emulate?

At this time, Providence should be looking to Detroit for inspiration. Just months after filing for bankruptcy, Detroit’s leaders unveiled detailed plans for the city’s recovery, which laid out a blueprint for future spending and ways the city could pay back its creditors. The plans look optimistically toward a Detroit with renewed city services — a draw for developers and new businesses. Business leaders, corporations and foundations are committing funds to help revitalization. Even locally, Central Falls can provide a model on how to “re-boot” the city after years of mismanagement and stabilize finances. We be laser-focused on the three crucial issues in the city: saving the collapsing pension fund, reducing the near national-record high property taxes.


2. Snow Removal
The city has an ordinance that states that the abutting property owner must remove snow from sidewalks. This ordinance has gone under-enforced for years creating a major public safety issue for the city’s residents every time it snows. The city and the state are notable offenders in not clearing snow from sidewalks abutting their property (sidewalks abutting parks, public buildings, on overpasses, etc.). How will you hold private property owners, the state, and the City itself accountable for removing snow in a timely fashion, and how will you ensure that snow removal ordinances are enforced?

Private Property owners should be appropriately ticketed (fined) after a brief public relations campaign as a warning this is coming – essentially the same as for those who do not recycle. The city’s failure to clear its own sidewalks is a failure of administration in the City Hall, and the appropriate officer charged with seeing this is done needs to be called to task. As to the State? Being sovereign there is little we can do but try to work with state officials to remind them of their responsibilities.


3. Street Parking Permits and Snow
The City recently ended its longtime ban on overnight parking introducing a permit system for City residents to park on the street overnight. Allowing residents to park on the street relieves the need to provide off-street parking in paved lots and yards. Reducing this paved area has numerous environmental and quality of life benefits. Unfortunately the City bans parking during heavy snow with no options for people parking on the street, forcing the need for off-street spaces during these storms. Other cities, including Boston, allow street parking during storms, banning parking only on designated emergency snow routes. Would you support allowing people with permits to park on designated streets during snow storms?

I would support alternative parking areas when a storm is coming, which may not be on the street – for safety reasons the streets need to be plowed, and some of our small and older streets can barely get cars down. There would be some streets designated as OK to park, but not all, during a storm.


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Air Quality Alert – Free RIPTA – August 27, 2014

From RIPTA:


All regular RIPTA buses and trolleys, but excluding special services, will be free on Wednesday, August 27th , 2014.

canvas-featured-air-quality-alertThe Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is predicting that air quality will reach unhealthy levels in portions of Rhode Island during the afternoon on Wednesday. A very hot and very humid air mass with west to southwest winds will be present at that time, which will lead to unhealthy air conditions. The poor air quality will be due to elevated ground level ozone concentrations. Ozone is a major component of smog and is formed by the photochemical reaction of pollutants emitted by motor vehicles, industry and other sources in the presence of elevated temperatures and sunlight.

Rhode Island residents can help reduce air pollutant emissions. Limit car travel and the use of small engines, lawn motors and charcoal lighter fuels. Travel by bus or carpool whenever possible, particularly during high ozone periods.

The Department of Health warns that unhealthy levels of ozone can cause throat irritation, coughing, chest pain, shortness of breath, increased susceptibility to respiratory infection and aggravation of asthma and other respiratory ailments. These symptoms are worsened by exercise and heavy activity. The children, elderly and people who have underlying lung diseases, such as asthma, are at particular risk of suffering from these effects. As ozone levels increase, the number of people affected and the severity of the health effects also increase.

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→ PBN: Third I-195 land proposal moves forward; for East Side land

195-east-side-waterfront

The proposal, from Baccari’s Royal Oaks Realty LLC, includes apartments, offices and a ground floor “retail/food operation” on Parcel 8, which stretches between Pike Street and Tockwotton Street in Fox Point, he said in an email.

195 Commission Page on Parcel 8.
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195 Redevelopment District Commission Meetings – August 18, 19, & 20, 2014

featured-195commission A meeting of the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission will be held at Rhode Island Commerce Corporation, 315 Iron Horse Way, Providence, Rhode Island, on MONDAY, AUGUST 18, 2014, beginning at 5:00pm, for the following purposes

I. Public Session

  1. Welcome by Chairperson: Chairperson Colin Kane.
  2. Approval of the Minutes of the Commission Meeting Held on July 21, 2014.
  3. Executive Director’s Report – Review of Activities During Past Month and Business Plan for the Period August – December 2014.
  4. Update Regarding the Request by Mr. Stephen Beranbaum for Use of a Portion of Parcel 28 for Parking and Vote.
  5. Update from Counsel Regarding District Permitting Process; Discussion Regarding Creation of Legal Issues Subcommittee; Vote Regarding Creation of Legal Issues Subcommittee and Designation of Members.
  6. II. Executive Session

    To consider and act upon such matters as may be considered at a meeting closed to the public pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws, Section 4264665(a) (the Open Meetings Law), specifically matters permitted to be so considered under subsection (5) (acquisition and disposition of public property).

  7. Review of Proposals to Purchase and Develop District Property; Vote to Proceed with/Reject Proposals.
  8. III. Public Session

  9. Chairman’s Report – Review of Activities in Past Month and Proposed Future Activities/ Tentative Agenda for September 15, 2014 Meeting.
  10. Vote to Adjourn.

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