Greater City Providence

City Plan Commission Meeting – July 21, 2015

[alert type=”muted”]City Plan Commission Meeting
Tuesday, July 21, 2015 – 4:45pm
444 Westminster Street, First Floor[/alert]

cpc-roundOpening Session

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Approval of minutes from June 16, 2015 meeting – for action
  • Director’s Report

Development Review Regulations

1. Amendment of Development Review Regulations – A discussion on the amendments to the City Plan Commission’s Development Review Regulations – for discussion

Zoning Ordinance Amendment

2. Referral 3394 – Zoning Ordinance Amendment regarding student homes – Proposed amendment to the zoning ordinance to create regulations for student homes – for action

City Council Referral

3. Referral 3395 – Abandonment of DeWolf Street1 – The applicant is requesting to abandon the entirety of DeWolf Street, which lies between Audrey Street and Appleton Street to merge it with their abutting property – for action (Olneyville)

Minor Subdivision

4. Case No. 15-024 MI – 32 Luke Street (Preliminary plan approval) – The applicant is proposing to subdivide a lot measuring approximately 15,912 SF into two lots measuring approximately 5,000 SF and 10,912 SF – for action (AP 97 Lot 948, Charles)

5. Case No. 15-028 MI – 342 Eddy Street (Preliminary and Final plan approval)2


Rendering of proposed parking garage at South Street Landing by SGA.

The applicant is proposing to create a new lot measuring approximately one acre from Lot 429 which measures approximately 6.5 acres. The applicant is requesting to combine the preliminary and final plan stages – for action (AP 21 Lot 429, Downtown)

Institutional Master Plan

6. Rhode Island Nursing Education Center (NEC) at South Street Landing – Review of the institutional master plan for the NEC at South Street landing, a collaboration between Rhode Island College and the University of Rhode Island. The NEC will be located within a rehabilitated power station and will also include commercial space and Brown University administrative offices. A 744 space parking garage will be built on an adjacent lot with land leased from National Grid – for action (AP 21 Lot 430, Downtown)


[alert type=”muted”]Agenda [/alert]

1 Google cannot find a DeWolf Street in Providence, I assume this is it on Streetview.
2 This is subdividing the National Grid land next to the South Street Landing project to create a parcel for a parking garage along Eddy 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.


  • Though its a garage, I’d still love to see more design architecture like the rendering above in Providence. Really looks to liven AND brighten that desolate area up. Hope it happens!

  • It’s a great design, which is hard for me to say because it’s a parking structure. I can’t clearly see retail on the ground level though in this rendering… is that still going to be required? I’d like to see some retail units that open to the ground level, with outdoor sidewalk seating. Further more, shouldn’t there be retail that faces the water on the other side of the parking structure? I hope they don’t intend on wasting valuable riverfront land by not putting pedestrian friendly spaces on the river’s edge… that would be the worst part of this project, if that’s true.

    I’m still holding out that they will put a kayak/canoe/small watercraft shop here to promote recreational use of the river…

  • Its a pretty design. Still amazes me that somehow we still need this structure with all the open lots in the Jewelry District.

  • The developer has asked to be relieved from the requirement to have ground floor retail. It would be the first garage to be built since that requirement entered the zoning code.

    Between the garage and the river will be National Grid buildings and equipment.

  • No retail at street level? Then another boring sidewalk (like by the new downtown Marriot garage across from the Renaissance) that undermines any effort to build more of a walking culture.

    The Master Plan review is also chance to see if URI-Providence will do anything to promote biking, walking, or transit use to the their nursing complex, or will they assume everybody drives and subsidize “free” parking for all without doing anything to promote anything else as RIC and URI-Providence does.

  • No retail? No garage! This is supposed to create connections between Fox Point and the Jewelry District. How is this garage an improvement over the exisiting surface lot? You’d think after the hugely successful conversion of the Biltmore garage it wouldn’t be so damn hard to get developers to follow that model. Why sacrifice higher rent retail space for a few lousy parking spots?

  • I’d like to see the micro-retail units like the Biltmore Garage has, I think getting a diverse group (6, maybe?) stores on that stretch of street across from Brown would add a lot of year-round traffic. Which is exactly what we need. I live near here and when Brown isn’t in session, it’s dead… it’s not very busy even when they are in session to be honest.

    I’d like to see some cool retail stores outside of the mall in one concentrated area that bring in destination shoppers… Maybe an REI would do well there (with kayaks/canoes for rent to take out in the river), downtown needs a good delicatessen too.

  • No retail no garage. Plain and simple. Portland, Oregon has been mean to the developers over the last 30 years, requiring retail on lower level, and I’ll be damned if they now have one of the best healthiest downtown cores in our nation! While we appreciate business in Rhode Island we also know historically that they will abandon us at the drop of a pin and leave decay and unemployment. If they cannot get with us on a sustainable downtown then they obvious don’t have any plan on committing to Providence or Rhode Island. (Downtown Houston is DEAD!!!! because of parking garages). Yes it has offices, but not much else to help create a well rounded downtown core….with many options for people and tax generating!

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