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City Plan Commission Meeting – November 18, 2014

CPC City Plan Commission Meeting
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 – 4:45pm
Joseph Doorley Municipal Building, 444 Westminster Street, First Floor

Opening Session

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Approval of minutes from September 16, 2014 meeting – for action
  • Approval of minutes from September 30, 2014 special meeting – for action
  • Vote to elect Administrative Officer for City Plan Commission
  • Director’s Report

City Council Referral

1. Referral 3385 – Amendment of Section 404 of the Zoning Ordinance The proponent is requesting that Section 404 of the Zoning Ordinance be amended to remove the requirement that solar uses in Historic Districts be reviewed by the Historic District Commission – for action

Minor Subdivision

2. Case No. 14-032 MI – 550 Veazie Street The applicant is requesting to subdivide 550 Veazie Street measuring approximately 6.5 acres into two lots, each measuring approximately 3.9 acres and 3.02 acres– for action (AP 78 Lot 417, Wanskuck)

Major Subdivision – Public Informational Meeting

3. Case No. 14-031 MA – 440-460 Rochambeau Avenue The applicant is requesting to subdivide two lots at 440 and 460 Rochambeau Ave. measuring approximately 33,453 SF and 114,873 SF respectively, into 12 lots. Each proposed lot would measure more than 6,000 SF – for action (AP 93 Lots 14 and 339, Blackstone)

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Making Providence a greater city for 5 years

5th Birthday Candle

Photo (cc) AndrewEick

Today marks the 5th anniversary of the first post made on Greater City: Providence.

Greater City: Providence was created as a way to catalogue what was taking place at the Providence Tomorrow Charrettes and ensure that an urban perspective was heard and had a place to be discussed. While Matt, Bret, and I and others had been discussing the charrettes and how we wanted to approach them and just generally having an outlet for discussing urbanism in Providence for a while, October 8, 2006 marked the birth of this site and its first post.

Over the years the site has evolved into what it is today, a place to spread news and print commentary about the urban condition in Providence. We’ve published 1,743 posts, have received over 6,500 comments from readers on those posts, and have had over half a million page views.

We reach a wide audience in the city and beyond and it is always a joy when we’re out and about and someone tells us they read the site. Even more of a joy is when someone reads something on the site and it prompts them to act on an issue. We’re proud that we can prompt citizens into action and influence the decision makers to respond to issues.

We want to thank you all for reading, some since day one, and others who find the site every day. Knowing that people are reading and appreciating the site makes us continue with it. We hope to be at it for another 5 years.


While we have your attention, allow us to remind you all the ways you can connect with Greater City: Providence in addition to this site.

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Tuesday Morning

Tuesday Morning

Primary day for the Mayoral election in New York City. I walk from my house the block to PS 84 to cast my vote.

Rather than wait for the bus, I walk the 8 blocks from PS 84 to Ditmars Station, because it is such a stunning day. I grab a coffee before climbing the stairs up to the station and getting on the N train.

I had taken to crossing the platform at Queensboro Plaza from the N train to the 7 train, allowing me to avoid the crowds at Times Square. After leaving Court House Square the train makes the bend around 5Pointz and before going under the East River I’d catch a view of the Towers.

I get off the train at 5th Avenue in Manhattan and come above ground at Bryant Park. As I cross 5th Avenue making my way to my office on Madison Avenue, looking left I could see the Towers again. I probably didn’t that morning, no reason to; besides I was busy looking right to make my way across the street.

When I get to my office the longest part of my commute begins, the interminable wait for the damn elevator. It always took forever. Most days a collection of co-workers formed and the morning ritual of complaining about the elevator commenced. This day however, the conversation was about the weather. It was glorious! The most amazing blue sky, I remember talking to people about it, even strangers on the train were talking to each other about it, it was truly remarkable. One of the very few perfect New York City days between our horrifically muggy summers and windswept winters. I was already thinking about lunch at Bryant Park and the best time to get there to get a chair on the lawn.

The elevator eventually brought me to my office on the 8th floor. Sitting at my desk I must have been checking my email or something. At some point I called a co-worker downstairs. She couldn’t talk, a plane had crashed at the World Trade Center and she was trying to get in touch with a friend downtown.

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Memorial Day


Photo (cc) eddiecoyote

Ted Nesi compiled the names of all the Rhode Islanders who have died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, courtesy of The Washington Post’s tally:

  • Spec. Michael Andrade, 28, of Bristol (2003)
  • Capt. Matthew August, 28, of North Kingstown (2004)
  • Sgt. Gregory Belanger, 24, of Narragansett (2003)
  • Sgt. Charles Caldwell, 38, of North Providence (2003)
  • Lance Cpl. Holly Charette, 21, of Cranston (2005)
  • Pfc. Kyle Coutu, 20, of Providence (2010)
  • 2nd Lt. Matthew Coutu, 23, of North Kingstown (2005)
  • Sgt. Moises Jazmin, 25, of Providence (2006)
  • Sgt. Michael Paranzino, 22, of Middletown (2010)
  • Sgt. Christopher Potts, 38, of Tiverton (2004)
  • Spec. Dennis Poulin, 26, of Cumberland (2011)
  • Lance Cpl. Matthew Serio, 21, of North Providence (2004)
  • Cpl. Brian St. Germain, 22, of Warwick (2006)
  • Lt. Francis Toner IV, 26, of Narragansett (2009)
  • Sgt. Michael Weidemann, 23, of Newport (2006)

Update: Nesi was alerted by the Secretary of State’s office of 8 more Rhode Island soldiers who have died since Sept. 11th, 2001:

  • Staff Sgt. Joseph Camara
  • Master Sgt. Richard Ferguson
  • Petty Officer Ronald Gill
  • Missionary John Kelly
  • Sgt. 1st Class Curtis Mancini
  • Sgt. 1st Class Danilo Nuenz
  • Chief Warrant Officer 5 Sharon Swartworth
  • Lance Cpl. John VanGyzen
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News & Notes

Sidewalk Rage: Mental Illness or ‘Altruistic Punishment?’ [Time Magazine | Healthland]

While it sounds like an oxymoron, altruistic punishment is basically how social norms get enforced. So when you expel a huffy “Excuse me!” to the rude sidewalk clogger in front of you who has stopped midstride to check his BlackBerry, you’re trying to discourage behavior that endangers other members of the society. It’s called “altruistic” punishment, because your efforts to protect civility come at personal cost with little chance of personal benefit: you are far more likely to get an obscene gesture or even a punch in the mouth than a thank you.


Nonprofit group wins funds for Olney Village rehab project [The Providence Journal]

Olneyville Housing Corporation has received key financing assistance from Rhode Island Housing that will permit the nonprofit organization to move forward with its Olney Village project.

The $10-million development project will turn 11 foreclosed properties and a large vacant lot in the Providence neighborhood into 39 affordable apartments, plus spaces for two organizations: the food pantry formerly located at St. Teresa’s Church and the Manton Avenue Project, a youth arts and theater program.


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We’re starting to feel like Susan Lucci over here

Thank you to everyone who voted to nominate us as Best Blog in the Phoenix Best of 2011 poll. Now that we’ve been nominated, it would be wicked super if you would vote for us to win. You can vote once a day. Make sure you go to the end of the poll to submit your final votes.

Tell all your friends, your family, your co-workers, and your cat to vote too! We’re getting tired of being Susan Lucci to the Daily Dose.

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City Plan Commission Meeting (01/19)

PROVIDENCE CITY PLAN COMMISSION NOTICE OF REGULAR MEETING
TUESDAY, JANUARY 19, 2010 4:45 PM

Department of Planning and Development, 4th Floor Auditorium 400 Westminster Street, Providence, RI 02903

OPENING SESSION

Call to Order
Roll Call
Approval of Meeting Minutes: December 1st and 15th, 2009
Approval of the CPC meeting schedule for the 2010 calendar year
Designation of Recording Secretary

CITY COUNCIL REFERRAL


View Larger Map

1. Referral 3321 – Petition to abandon a portion of Penrose Avenue
Petition to abandon the unimproved portion of Penrose Avenue. (Blackstone)

LAND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT


View Larger Map

2. Case No. 09-050MA – 395 Promenade Street (Master Plan Approval)
The applicant is seeking Master Plan Approval to reuse approximately 2,600 SF of the southwest portion of an existing 2 story building and construct a new 23,000 SF one story laboratory building. The building will be used as a blood bank. Onsite parking will be provided. The property abuts Promenade and Bath Streets. (AP 67 Lots 341, 522 and 523) (Smith Hill)

The applicant has requested that this item be continued to the February 23, 2010 meeting.

PROVIDENCE TOMORROW

3. College Hill, Wayland & Fox Point Neighborhood Plan
Continuation of the discussion between Commission members and staff regarding the development potential of the “Shooters” site based on the approved neighborhood plan. The discussion will also address the legal issues surrounding downzoning the site. No additional public comment will be taken.

4. Neighborhood Plan Presentations
Presentation of the West End/Federal Hill/ Reservoir, Charles/Wanskuck and Hartford/Manton/Silver Lake neighborhood plans by DPD staff. The plans will be reviewed by the Commission and public comment will be taken. The Commission may choose to act to adopt one or more of the neighborhood plans presented.

ADJOURNMENT

Agenda

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Yes, a new theme is in the works

You may see the look of the site change from time to time as we work on getting a new theme up and running (the old and new theme may pop in and out of existence as it is worked on). We’ll let you know when it is all settled in and solicit your feedback.

Thanks!

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A couple cool L.A. photo sites


Photo from Empty L.A.

I ran across a couple of cool L.A. based urban photo websites recently on the intertubes.

Empty L.A. is by photographer Matt Logue and is what it sounds like, visions of Los Angeles devoid of cars and people. Rather apocalyptic looking.


A Photoshopped after image from Narrow Streets Los Angeles

David Yoon is a self-described writer, designer, and urban planning geek. On his blog Narrow Streets Los Angeles he Photoshops some of Los Angele’s widest thoroughfares making them into narrow lanes, utter changing the feel of the places. His blog also features “Friday Favorites” of some of the best narrow streets around the world.

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Ontario introduces green vehicle license plates

ontario_greenplate

The province of Ontario in Canada has introduced a new green vehicle license plate for plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles. The province describes the plate and the benefits associated with it:

Ontarians have voted for a new vehicle licence plate that will encourage consumers to switch to environmentally-friendly cars and trucks.

The new plate will have green lettering on a white background with the picture of a trillium in the middle. It was selected from four choices in an online vote that ran from July to October.

Drivers sporting these plates on a plug-in hybrid or battery electric vehicle will be able to:

  • Use Ontario’s High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes until 2015, even if there is just one person in the vehicle
  • Access recharging facilities at GO Transit and other provincially operated parking lots
  • Use designated parking spots at the University of Toronto and private companies such as Walmart Canada.
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This water tastes delicious!

faucet

Photo (cc) Cayusa

A report by the Environmental Working Group ranks Providence’s municipal water as second best (of metropolitan areas over 250,000 people) in the country. EWG compiled information from water utility tests going back to 2004 in 48,000 municipalities in 45 states. Arlington, Texas beat us out for the top spot. The only other New England city in the top ten is Boston at number 5.

More reason for us Providencians to give up the bottled water habit.

View the full report here.

Via Yahoo! Green Blog and Po-Tee-Weet?.

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Site work

Doing some work to the site. Things probably look funky. Don’t fear!

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The future’s so bright…

It is actually rather amazing, for good or bad, how much of this came true. Though it is certainly good that much of it didn’t. This is a vision of the future from 1958.

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New Urban Arts wins national award

new_urban_arts_web

Update: We received the photo above of today’s award presentation. Pictured from Left to Right: Jason Yoon, Executive Director, New Urban Arts; Rosalia Velis, Studio Team Advisory Board Chair; and First Lady Michelle Obama. Photo by Steven E. Purcell

It’s official! New Urban Arts, an interdisciplinary arts studio and gallery for high school students and emerging artists in Providence, Rhode Island that empowers young artists to explore the visual, performing, and literary arts through yearlong free out-of-school programs, is being nationally recognized as one of 15 youth arts and humanities programs to receive the prestigious 2009 Coming Up Taller Award. Youth and adult representatives of the program have traveled to Washington, D.C. today for a White House ceremony, where they have accepted the award from First Lady Michelle Obama.

Coming Up Taller is a national initiative that recognizes and supports outstanding out-of-school and after-school arts and humanities programs for children, especially those with great potential, but limited outlets for creative expression. A project of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Coming Up Taller Awards honor programs that offer exceptional learning experiences in the arts and the humanities and that have a tangible effect on the lives of young people as evidenced through improved academic scores, enhanced life skills, and positive relationships with peers and adults.

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