Developer’s plan to build skyscraper in Providence moves forward

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A proposal to construct a 46-story skyscraper on the Providence waterfront has been given the green light by the 195 Commission.

The panel voted Tuesday night to approve a revised plan from Manhattan-based developer Jason Fane. Before it’s taken up by the City Council, the project must be granted a zoning change, which Fane’s legal counsel said they’ll start petitioning the city for on Wednesday.

Fane originally proposed putting three towers on the land previously occupied by I-195, but scaled it back to a single tower late last year.

Artist’s rendering of the Hope Point Towers project

If all goes according to plan, the Hope Point Tower would be built at the corner of Dorrance and Dyer Streets and feature retail shops on the ground and residential space above. Once completed, it would be the tallest building in the capital city’s skyline.

“It will bring feet to the street,” Fane said. “It will bring baby strollers and dog walkers, all throughout the neighborhood, which brings vitality and that makes it attractive to business.”

Fane said he’ll seek tax breaks and $15 million in tax credits for the project.

Building trade union leaders voiced their support of the proposal Tuesday night while some community members raised concerns about the sheer size of the tower and the potential impacts on a proposed park in the area.

“I’m a little concerned that we’re building residences rather than jobs,” said Providence resident Carla Ricci.

Fane said he wants the skyscraper to be an icon in the city, with lifestyle opportunities similar to a high-rise he built in Toronto.

“That’s what I’ve offered to bring to Providence, but Providence has to want it,” he said.

Fane estimated the completion of the project would likely be five to seven years down the road.