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  • Amy Mendillo for Providence Monthly

Neighbors Plead with Commission over Public Space

Fox Point neighbors have been heavily involved with the activities of 195 Commission, the quasi-public state agency responsible for overseeing the development of the former 195 land. In mid-December, the Commission made decisions on two projects located on the eastern edge of the Van Leesten Bridge in Fox Point: to approve the final design for the residential/mixed-use development that is slated to be built on Parcel 2 (the former site of the sunflower installations) and to choose a developer to build on Parcel 1a, the strip of land located at the current site of the Providence Flea.


Parcel 1a was the most controversial issue of the December meeting. All of the neighbor-advocates who spoke at the meeting and a majority of members of the public who offered testimony at the previous meeting pleaded with Commissioners to build nothing on Parcel 1a, suggesting that this segment of the Riverwalk, which is situated in the so-called “green necklace,” should be preserved for public use. “Developing this strip will have very little impact on your bottom line,” FPNA president Lily Bogosian suggested during the public session, “but it will have a huge impact on the selling out the most environmentally beautiful walkway on the entire [Providence] River and in Providence.”


The Commission voted to build on the land; it awarded the project to Riverside Partners, a development firm that proposes a six-story building with ten residential units and first-floor retail space.

Photo, Amy Mendillo


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