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Providence Journal,
June 15, 2005
By Cathleen Crowley

07 Feb 06: Plans for American Tourister Scrutinized
06 Apr 28: Royal Mill Clock Tower Tolls Again
06 Apr 9: Herb Weiss takes message on the Road
05 Dec 21: 14,500 sf Condo
05 Oct 30: The High Life
05 Oct 10: Jefferson Place goes condo
05 Sep 16: Pearl Street Lofts
05 Sep 1: The old Bomes Theatre
05 Aug 13: Brown purchases Old Stone Bank
05 Aug 11: Providence: Boom or Bust?
05 Aug 9: Taco Truk
05 Jul 15: SBER buys US Rubber
05 Jul 6: Sports Complex
05 Jun 21: Providence Kickball
05 Jun 17: Sasaki presents Vision 2020
05 Jun 16: State fixes Armory
05 Jun 15: Capital Center development
05 Jun 02: Trolley Barn demolished
05 May 13: Downtown BID team deployed
05 Apr 13: New Westin Tower revealed
05 Apr 17: Duany suggests redo public squares
05 Mar 25: Feldco re-negs on affordable units
05 Mar 21: A Better way for Warwick?
05 Feb 27: Interview with Buff Chace
05 Feb 25: 32-story condo tower proposed downtown
05 Feb 21: Developers want to buy Fidas

Capital Center: Another sign of the building boom

Capitol Cove, at Canal Street and Park Row, is one of several projects in various stages of development

Capital Center literally vibrates with construction activity and, this week, yet another developer begins scraping, digging and preparing the ground for a new building.

The metal girders of the new GTECH headquarters rise higher every day, and across the cove, sheets of steel have been driven into the ground to prepare for the Waterplace Place high-rise condominium complex.

On an empty lot a few hundred feet away, behind the Amtrak station, Capitol Cove LCC began site work this week for two low-rise apartment buildings. The buildings will sit next to the canal, on the corner of Canal Street and Park Row.

The seven-story complex will rise 75-feet and house 255 apartment units. A parking garage with 360 spaces will fill the first two floors.

This phase of the development will cost between $35 million and $40 million, said Doug Weeks, who partnered with Robert S. Roth to develop Capitol Cove. Eventually, the developers hope to build an additional 350 units.

As part of the construction, Capitol Cove has agreed to extend the Riverwalk about 1,000 feet up the Moshassuck River, running it all the way to Smith Street. The 20-foot wide path, which currently ends at Citizens Bank, will be open to the public.

Though the Capitol Cove project received approval last year, it has spent months bidding the construction contracts to find the best prices, Weeks said.

The downtown area is seeing a mini-boom in residential construction. There are three condominium projects on the horizon: Waterplace Park in Capital Center will have two high-rise towers and 193 luxury condominiums; One Ten Westminster will be a 33-story, 130-unit tower nestled between the Turk's Head Building and the Arcade; and the addition to The Westin Providence hotel will include 105 condominiums on the top floors of the new tower.

Only Waterplace Park has broken ground.

The Capitol Cove developers believe their project will attract a different consumer.

"We are in a different market, more competitive, lower-rise units," Weeks said. "We feel as though we will be able to bring them in cheaper."

The apartments will range from 800 to 1,200 square feet and rent for $1,700 to $2,700 a month.

If there is more demand for upscale living, Capitol Cove has plans to build three condominium towers in later phases.

"We have to gauge the market," Weeks said. "There is an absorption rate that we are trying to stay under."

Construction on the first two buildings should take two years, Weeks said.

This week, contractors will begin removing pavement and trees. The work also involves packing down the ground to make it more dense and stable for the foundation. The developers plan to host an official groundbreaking ceremony later this summer when the building construction begins.

 
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