Jewelry District apartment project demolished after delays

DESPITE RECEIVING APPROVAL from the Downtown Design Review Committee in December 2019, developer Pebb Capital recently scrapped its plans for an apartment building in the Jewelry District of Providence. / courtesy PLANNING PLANNING

PROVISION – After getting three six-month extensions for city permits for the project, a company called Pebb Capital is pulling the plug on plans to build a 10-story apartment building in the Jewelry District.

A company spokesperson recently said Pebb Capital is scrapping its plans to build an apartment complex at 151-155 Chestnut St., which originally received approval from the Downtown Design Review Committee in December 2019.

The project met opposition from some local residents who claimed it did not fit into the fabric of the neighborhood, including a successful legal challenge over zoning that resulted in the originally proposed two-storey building being reduced in size.

Suzanne Perez-Bernal, spokesperson for Boca Raton, Florida-based Pebb, said the company is instead focusing on trying to win the bid with the Rhode Island government to build a new state health lab. Pebb was one of four finalists announced in April by the administration of Governor Daniel J. McKee for a proposal to build a new public health lab. Pebb was the only company not to propose land in Providence’s I-195 Redevelopment District as the site for the public project, instead offering to build the facility near Bassett Street and Clifford Street. A developer is expected to be appointed this summer.

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“Pebb Capital has decided to turn its attention to its larger development site at 31, 41-51 Bassett Street, which is currently a finalist for the Rhode Island Department of Health’s pending RFP. [request for proposals]Perez-Bernal said in an email. “Pebb Capital’s proposed site for the Department of Health’s lab facility at Clifford and Bassett Streets is located one block from the company’s 155 Chestnut Street building.”

It’s not immediately clear what Pebb plans to do with the property, which currently houses a small, narrow brick office building, along with a parking lot, which the company purchased from Michael Corso, a Providence attorney considered the architect of the failed state. $75 million loan to baseball star Curt Schilling’s video game company, 38 Studios LLC.

“In the immediate timeframe, Pebb Capital wants to complete the application process and then evaluate the best use for its Chestnut Street asset, which would complement the Jewelry District’s evolving needs,” said Perez-Bernal. “The company remains committed to the city and to long-term planning that best suits the community.”

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This follows a meeting of the Downtown Design Review Committee in December last year, when a developer representative of the project said a groundbreaking operation was only “months away” after the project was previously extended due to reasons related to the COVID-19 pandemic. – 19 pandemic. The developer presented itself under the name Providence Chestnut I LLC, the limited liability company affiliated with Pebb that was incorporated as the owner of the Chestnut Street property.

Sharon Steele, president of the Jewelry District Association, previously criticized the developer for the expansions, stating at the December public meeting that other construction projects were not similarly delayed due to COVID-19.

However, the committee was sympathetic to the request and approved the extension, with chair Kristi Gelnett saying, “Of course we understand.” And a lawyer representing Pebb expressed confidence that construction would begin soon, but the project’s approval has since been dropped.

“This project is on track,” attorney Robert Stolzman, who represents the developer, said at the December meeting. “We will be ready to leave in months.”

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Marc Larocque is a contributing writer for PBN.

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This post Jewelry District apartment project demolished after delays

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