Jan Brodie out as head of I-195 commission

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The head of the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission is leaving her post.

Jan Brodie, who has served as the commission’s executive director since 2013, said Friday she plans to return to the private sector, but did not say where she intends to work.

“It has been an incredible opportunity to work on this important project,” Brodie said in a statement. “With new incentives now in place, the 195 land development project is ready to move into a new and exciting phase.”

Brodie joined the commission in 2013 after working as the northeast regional director of The Community Builders, a Boston-based real estate firm. She previously served as vice president of the Armory Revival Company in Providence.

Jan Brodie
Jan Brodie

Brodie’s departure comes just as city and state leaders reached an agreement to provide tax-stabilization agreements to projects on the I-195 land, a policy that was viewed as essential to spur development on the former highway space.

Brodie supported a proposal by Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio to allow the commission to oversee the tax-break policy on the land, but legislation was never introduced in the House.

Mayor Jorge Elorza signed an ordinance Thursday that grants 15-year tax-stabilization agreements to projects worth at least $10 million and 20-year deals to five still-unidentified projects worth more than $50 million, so long as developers agree to make an effort to hire minority contractors and that all trade construction contractors offer apprenticeship programs.

Under the ordinance, the 15-year deals will be what city leaders call “administrative tax stabilizations,” meaning they would not need City Council approval. The first five 20-year tax breaks will be approved by the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission and any future deals would need to win support from the mayor’s office and the council.

For the 15-year tax breaks, developers will pay no taxes in the first year, followed by three years of land taxes, before gradually increasing tax payments on the assessed value of the property over the next 11 years. The 20-year projects will be tax exempt for three years, pay land taxes for two more years and then begin paying taxes based on property value.

City and state officials have said the ordinance will pave the way for a proposed life-science complex that CV Properties and Wexford Science & Technology wants to build on two parcels of the I-195 land.

What is less certain is the future of the Pawtucket Red Sox, whose owners have said they want to build a stadium off Dyer Street. House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello has said lawmakers could consider the stadium during a special session this fall, but the proposal has received little public support to date.

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Dan McGowan ( dmcgowan@wpri.com ) covers politics, education and the city of Providence for WPRI.com. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter: @danmcgowan

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