Fane Tower Hearing — City Council

[UPDATE: The committee voted to deny the zoning change! YAY! Now it goes to a vote of the full city council. The ProJo reports that this may not be until September. Still . . . yay! BC]

Okay people, this is it. We need eight City Councilors to VOTE NO! on the Fane Tower, specifically, the zoning changes needed for this project to proceed. The zoning change petition will go to the full City Council for two public hearings, the first of which is Wednesday.

Contact your City Councilperson here! Contact all of them. Fill up their mailboxes!

We last wrote about the Fane Tower in May when testimony had successfully persuaded the City Plan Commission (CPC) to advise the city Council against the Fane Tower. From Brent Runyan, executive director of the Providence Preservation Society,

At the May 15th City Plan Commission hearing, the board voted to deny a recommendation to City Council regarding Fane’s petition for THREE changes to the Zoning Ordinance and ONE change to the Zoning Map of the City of Providence to allow his tower proposal to move forward.

In a 5-2 vote, the CPC found that the proposed changes are not in compliance with the comprehensive plan. See this ProJo article for a summary of the hearing.
Over the course of two CPC public hearings (4/25 and 5/15), 28 individuals spoke in opposition of the proposed Fane Tower and 16, mostly labor representatives, spoke in support. Comments were also submitted to the CPC via email and letter. Thank you to all of you who spoke up and wrote in. Your voices were heard by the commissioners!

The Facebook group “38 Tower” has recently posted some renderings that answer the question, “How tall would the Fane Tower be?” These to-scale mock-ups give an idea of how this looming 600-foot tower will dominate every view, from every place in the city, and beyond. And remember, this tower would sit on top of a six-story parking garage and those are always so beautiful. (See picture below)

This is prime real estate. Why are we giving it away for $3 million, complete with state tax credits and a tax stabilization agreement from the city? The wonderful new pedestrian bridge is nearing completion and all the adjacent riverfront parcels are about to become highly desirable.

Except for interested parties — the developer, the trade unions, and their handmaidens in the state house — everybody hates this hideous building. See below for more information.

Ethan Gyles: New skyscraper would set a dangerous precedent

MOST IMPORTANTLY: Go to the hearing Wednesday! The trade unions always pack these meetings — let’s make a big ugly angry crowd! This building will create temporary jobs for the builders and luxury condos for  . . . who exactly is going to fill this building? Compare to nearby Wexford which, when completed, will fill up with highly-paid professionals.

If you would like to provide written testimony on the proposal (in addition to or instead of attending the hearing), you may send it to Emily Martineau, City Council Chief of Staff at emartineau@providenceri.gov; and directly to Chair Terrence Hassett at Ward12@providenceri.com.

5:30pm to 8:30pm, Wednesday, July 18, City Hall, 3rd floor, 25 Dorrance Street, (directions)

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