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COMPLETE: Capital Square, Douglas Ave.

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There was a story on the news last night (the night before?) about a new condo project that broke ground on Smith Hill on Douglas Avenue. Called Capitol Something units were to start around $170+k (?).

Anyone know anything else about this one?

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There was a story on the news last night (the night before?) about a new condo project that broke ground on Smith Hill on Douglas Avenue. Called Capitol Something units were to start around $170+k (?).

Anyone know anything else about this one?

I remember seeing this project on a local architect's website. The firm is Donald Powers Architecture. There is a short description and a few images; look at the "Douglas Avenue" link under "Portfolio / On the boards."

http://www.donaldpowersarchitects.com/port...ect.phtml?cat=6

The description, from the website:

13 units above 7,300 sf of retail. Focused on neighborhood square and recreational open space. Designed to be the gateway to the Smith Hill neighborhood's ongoing revitalization. For the Smith Hill Community Development Corporation.

Anyone from the firm on this forum? Seems like a small, urbanism-focused practice, located in the Jewelry District...

BJE

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I like the design of this project, mainly the rear parking. That firm seems to have some good stuff, minus of course that Reynold's Farm project in North Kingstown (of course). There's a project called "Smith Hill Visions" on there too, for the revitalization of Smith Hill.

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I remember seeing this project on a local architect's website. The firm is Donald Powers Architecture.

...

Anyone from the firm on this forum? Seems like a small, urbanism-focused practice, located in the Jewelry District...

I don't work there but I have some good friends that do. If there's something particular you want to find out about the project I could probably find out.

They do very nice work, mostly housing and planning under the New Urbanism banner (they were a sponsor of the recent CNU conference).

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Don is a great guy and a good friend. They will be moving to a space in the Peerless Building where the Met Cafe once was.

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DPA is our architect for the Parkis / North Elmwood Revitalization project.

They do really excellent work, and a good group of people I work with daily.

They are actually moving their offices into the Peerless Building. Hopefully they will get in there soon.

From what I've seen, the Douglas Ave project for SHCDC should be pretty kick-ass and a huge plus for the area.

Don is a great guy and a good friend. They will be moving to a space in the Peerless Building where the Met Cafe once was.

Ha! I've been getting on them lately for taking up the Met Cafe spot...I think they need to host shows or something to get back to the old days...

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Can you point out on a map where exactly this will be? And do you know the official name, on the news they said it was Capital Something but I don't remember what the Something was.

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I'm just basing this off of the sketch on DPA's website that shows the Smith Hill Visions "masterplan," but it appears to be across the street from the intersection of Douglas Ave and Candace Street, at the SE corner of St. Patricks Cemetery.

On DPA's site, go to Portfolio/Urban Design/Smith Hill Visions...the first image that comes up is a neighborhood plan, and at the upper right is a pair of buildings in red that match the project in question.

I'd link it here, but the website is one of those that makes you click through the links...

As far as getting more information about DPA projects, just out of curiosity I think we all like the inside info that sometimes comes across these boards...and I figured, based on their work, that they might have some employees here.

BJE

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Can you point out on a map where exactly this will be? And do you know the official name, on the news they said it was Capital Something but I don't remember what the Something was.

Its right next to Brooklyn Coffee and Tea. I think its Captiol Crossing, but I can't find the groundbreaking announcement I got...

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Smith Hill joins condo boom. Work begins on 13 condominiums and 6 businesses on Douglas Avenue. [ProJo.com]

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Smith Hill joins condo boom. Work begins on 13 condominiums and 6 businesses on Douglas Avenue. [ProJo.com]

looks like its' right next to the cemetary.

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the "affordable" condos should be snatched up quick, but the market rate ones could be a tough sell

the chad brown housing projects are a block away and the foxy lady, & etc are a few blocks away - not very walkable at night for families

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the "affordable" condos should be snatched up quick, but the market rate ones could be a tough sell

the chad brown housing projects are a block away and the foxy lady, & etc are a few blocks away - not very walkable at night for families

In spite of that there seems to be a resurgence in the area. Right behind these condo's "Times 2", a charter school, is putting up a new facility. You did leave out that there is a neighborhood police station a block away and New England Lemonade. Any violence at C.B. is usually gang related and among themselves, the Pekin Street area can also be a problem. It is a gritty neighborhood that I think has great possibilities as it lies between P.C. and downcity Providence.

Mark

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In spite of that there seems to be a resurgence in the area. Right behind these condo's "Times 2", a charter school, is putting up a new facility. You did leave out that there is a neighborhood police station a block away and New England Lemonade. Any violence at C.B. is usually gang related and among themselves, the Pekin Street area can also be a problem. It is a gritty neighborhood that I think has great possibilities as it lies between P.C. and downcity Providence.

Mark

i agree... this neighborhood is being cleaned up nicely. it's taking some time but it has a ton of potential. don't forget sticky fingers is about a block or so away as well.

sure, the foxy lady is right there, but i don't think there's a ton of problems related to it (unless you just don't want to live near a strip joint). the intersection with admiral isn't very far and it's a fairly decent area (and the best frozen lemonade is there).

i think the smith hill public library branch is near this place too, although it's one of the ones slated to close.

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i agree... this neighborhood is being cleaned up nicely. it's taking some time but it has a ton of potential. don't forget sticky fingers is about a block or so away as well.

sure, the foxy lady is right there, but i don't think there's a ton of problems related to it (unless you just don't want to live near a strip joint). the intersection with admiral isn't very far and it's a fairly decent area (and the best frozen lemonade is there).

i think the smith hill public library branch is near this place too, although it's one of the ones slated to close.

isn't douglas ave. a really bad area though? I always thought all of douglas ave., especially the "douglas projects" was the worst in the state. If so who would want to move to that area.

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isn't douglas ave. a really bad area though? I always thought all of douglas ave., especially the "douglas projects" was the worst in the state. If so who would want to move to that area.

it's really not as bad as people like to make it out to be. it's dirty and run down, but little by little restaurants are moving in and the place is getting cleaned up.

the "douglas projects" are the chad brown projects i assume. they're pretty bad, but i've driven through them and have never felt unsafe.

i think this project is mostly affordable housing though, so i'm sure those who would move there would be moving up.

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how is a lot of gang-related activity not a deterrent to condo sales in the area? there are other areas of the city with similar prices and without one of the most notorious section of projects in the state right next door. i know that its been a few years, but if you remember, there was a very high profile case where a couple of PC students [?] were car-jacked in that neighborhood, then kidnapped and murdered execution style by gang members. that said, i know of the improvements you mentioned and i hope they continue. I know everywhere you look will have its problems. I just said they would be a tougher sell, that's all. strip clubs may devalue your real estate investment. there is the foxy, but also several others within a 1/2 mile radius as well.

my advice would be to spend a little more and buy a place in the west broadway/armory/federal hill area, but that's just me...

happy condo hunting! lol

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isn't douglas ave. a really bad area though? I always thought all of douglas ave., especially the "douglas projects" was the worst in the state. If so who would want to move to that area.

I have to agree with Jim though on this one. That's a surprise. :D The area is seeing a lot of investment the closer you get to Downtown. I live very close to the intersection with Orms at the far end of Douglas next to Downtown. Only a few years back, the area was a literal dump from one end to the NP line. They have rehabilitated a lot of homes in the area and are bringing businesses back to the strip. The plaza @ the corner of Chalkstone is now full and there is a Tim Horton's that's already up across the street where an abandoned glass strewn lot sat for over a decade. The school that they are building there should bring additional small businesses to the rest of the small storefronts. Further up Douglas, Cafe 412 is @ the corner of Eaton and is a really cool looking place. I walk the dog down Douglas on occasion and it's a lot safer than it once was. The riff-raff from Chad Brown basically is confined to its own borders and rarely spills out to the surrounding neighborhoods.

What I would really like to see is the small park @ the corner of Douglas and Orms to be the gateway for the neighborhood. There is a gorgeous building that looks like it was formerly a Jewish synagogue of sorts at one time and there is only a lame sign in the front saying ,"Welcome to Smith Hill." I would like a green space there like the welcome sign for Federal Hill next to the Atwells exit...

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I have to agree with Jim though on this one. That's a surprise. :D The area is seeing a lot of investment the closer you get to Downtown. I live very close to the intersection with Orms at the far end of Douglas next to Downtown. Only a few years back, the area was a literal dump from one end to the NP line. They have rehabilitated a lot of homes in the area and are bringing businesses back to the strip. The plaza @ the corner of Chalkstone is now full and there is a Tim Horton's that's already up across the street where an abandoned glass strewn lot sat for over a decade. The school that they are building there should bring additional small businesses to the rest of the small storefronts. Further up Douglas, Cafe 412 is @ the corner of Eaton and is a really cool looking place. I walk the dog down Douglas on occasion and it's a lot safer than it once was. The riff-raff from Chad Brown basically is confined to its own borders and rarely spills out to the surrounding neighborhoods.

What I would really like to see is the small park @ the corner of Douglas and Orms to be the gateway for the neighborhood. There is a gorgeous building that looks like it was formerly a Jewish synagogue of sorts at one time and there is only a lame sign in the front saying ,"Welcome to Smith Hill." I would like a green space there like the welcome sign for Federal Hill next to the Atwells exit...

I just think if anything, instead of trying to force this into being a "better" area, just had new project homes, or some kinda of condo like living for people "moving up" and then put affordable to expensive living in another area where it won't be a problem to sell the houses, and to keep people in them. I think most people know about the two PC kids, and if they don't once those residences are up and running that will hit the paper and really detract people from the area. I know people who live near buttonwoods where they were murdered, and its hard for them to sell property because people know what happened there and the closeness to the hartford projects.

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I just think if anything, instead of trying to force this into being a "better" area, just had new project homes, or some kinda of condo like living for people "moving up" and then put affordable to expensive living in another area where it won't be a problem to sell the houses, and to keep people in them. I think most people know about the two PC kids, and if they don't once those residences are up and running that will hit the paper and really detract people from the area. I know people who live near buttonwoods where they were murdered, and its hard for them to sell property because people know what happened there and the closeness to the hartford projects.

:huh:

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:huh:

I have no clue what you are trying to elaborate on here...but if it has to do with gentrification.....I don't think it will ever happen on the same level as other areas of Providence. A few market rate condos are not going to do the trick. There are so many people that go up in arms over investment in the city and displacement of others. A city provides a healthy mix of people and some people are priced out ...but you will never see the same kind of effect here as in cities like Boston or San Francisco. Geographically, it's too small. Number 1. Secondly, the metropolitan area doesn't have enough of a highly educated workforce ( and high-paying jobs for that matter) to attract a wave of migration that could potentially escalate the property values where there would be a mass exodus of people. The demand and influx of people into the city is mostly Boston metro commuters and immigrants. There are only so many commuters that are willing to live here. High demand and low supply....property values rise...RI has more listings on MLS noe than anytime over the last few years. What's the effect? Property values come down. If this project is being done with community development $$ that was already appropriated, I wouldn't be worried about a gentrification wave.that will price out all the " blue-collar"people...That argument is just silly in my book and has been discussed in at least 3 threads already.........

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how is a lot of gang-related activity not a deterrent to condo sales in the area? there are other areas of the city with similar prices and without one of the most notorious section of projects in the state right next door. i know that its been a few years, but if you remember, there was a very high profile case where a couple of PC students [?] were car-jacked in that neighborhood, then kidnapped and murdered execution style by gang members. that said, i know of the improvements you mentioned and i hope they continue. I know everywhere you look will have its problems. I just said they would be a tougher sell, that's all. strip clubs may devalue your real estate investment. there is the foxy, but also several others within a 1/2 mile radius as well.

my advice would be to spend a little more and buy a place in the west broadway/armory/federal hill area, but that's just me...

happy condo hunting! lol

Chad Brown is no where near as dangerous as it was in the 80's and 90's. Of course, crime exists and these condos wouldn't be for everybody. However, the area is a lot nicer than it used to be. I'm not an advocate nor will I condone violence, but random acts of violence are as seldom as anything. I'm not saying the 2 PC kids deserved to be killed, but I'm sure it wasn't totally random....sort of like the St. Guillen girl in NY who was wandering out alone in NYC @ 4AM ......People have too much faith in the veracity of the media's reports.

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how is a lot of gang-related activity not a deterrent to condo sales in the area? there are other areas of the city with similar prices and without one of the most notorious section of projects in the state right next door. i know that its been a few years, but if you remember, there was a very high profile case where a couple of PC students [?] were car-jacked in that neighborhood, then kidnapped and murdered execution style by gang members. that said, i know of the improvements you mentioned and i hope they continue. I know everywhere you look will have its problems. I just said they would be a tougher sell, that's all. strip clubs may devalue your real estate investment. there is the foxy, but also several others within a 1/2 mile radius as well.

my advice would be to spend a little more and buy a place in the west broadway/armory/federal hill area, but that's just me...

happy condo hunting! lol

Don't forget that Camp Street/Abbott Street, known for its high drug activity, is within walking distance of many "high rent districts". It is a block from Hope Street, within sight of the "Summit", Mt. Hope and Olney Street right around the corner. If Camp Street doesn't affect those neighborhood prices then time will correct any affect C.B. has on Douglas Ave. C.B. has been the way it is since the early 60's. That is when the last W.W. II G.I.'s finally moved to suburban areas. C.B. was basically where the urban blacks from Lippett Hill (now known as University Heights) went when they were moved for urban renewal.

Fox Point could also be listed the same as Camp street.

FYI: Affectionately known as the "Projects". Chad Brown, Hartford, Admiral Street and Roger Williams. These were the four G.I. projects after WW II.

PC students? Are these the ones killed near the Button Hole Golf Course? If so, they were accosted in down city Providence, not in the P.C. neighborhood.

Mark

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PC students? Are these the ones killed near the Button Hole Golf Course? If so, they were accosted in down city Providence, not in the P.C. neighborhood.

They were taken from the steps of the Arcade, if I remember correctly.

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