Developer eyes Providence land for 3 skyscrapers

Renderings of the proposed "High Point Towers." (The Fane Organization)

An out-of-state developer has plans to build three skyscrapers in Rhode Island.

But they have several hurdles they'll need to clear in order to take it from idea to reality.

The Fane Organization has its eyes set on old Interstate 195 land near the Providence River.

"It's surrounded by so many good things,” Jason Fane of the Fane Organization said. “The academic institutions, the innovation district."

Fane said the organization wants to build "Hope Point Towers" on the land. The plot is near the intersection of Dyer and Dorrance Streets.

"I like being next to the park and the river,” he said.

But not everyone thinks it’s a good idea, including Sharon Steele of the Jewelry District Association.

"When Mr. Fane said that the first reaction would be, ‘Wow,’ mine would be, ‘Wow, what a disaster.’”

The proposal is comprised of three residential towers, as well as some retail space.

While one tower would be 33 stories, the second would be 43 stories, and the third would be 55 stories. They would be significantly taller than the vacant “Superman Building,” which is 26 stories.

“I don't consider them very attractive so that architecture being so prominent is – just, I don't know -- not something I'm particularly enthused about,” Elizabeth Leeper, a student in Providence, said.

Others disagreed.

“I think they're great looking buildings and I think anything for development in Providence is great for the area,” Joe Barnes, who lives in Providence, said.

It's projected to cost somewhere between $400 million and $500 million. It isn’t clear at this point how much money taxpayers might have to kick in.

Developers will need approval from the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission. They'll also have to address a zoning issue.

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