The city’s Real Estate Committee is heading up to Providence, R.I. on Wednesday, April 3, afternoon to check out properties that have been developed by the company that has expressed interest in the old Memorial Boulevard School.
The committee is made up of City Councilor Kevin Fuller, who chairs it, Councilor Ken Cockayne and Councilor Eric Carlson, all of whom have heard the developer’s plans for the future of the old school building, as well as input from the public last week. The entire panel is traveling to Providence to get a tour of three properties, one of them being the Veterans Memorial Auditorium.
The meeting agenda is posted on the city’s website, as well as city hall, however it does not say any action will be taken. By law, the committee is required to post this trip as a meeting since all three members of the panel are attending, and there is a quorum because all parties are represented.
Summit Real Estate Strategies out of Massachusetts is proposing to turn the school into a residential building that includes a fitness center and will preserve the current theater with some upgrades. Summit Real Estate Strategies is also working with Northeast Collaborative Architects out of Rhode Island and Bill Brackett, technical director at The Providence Performing Arts Center. Summit Real Estate Strategies is proposing to offer studio and one-bedroom apartments that would range in price at market-rate. The cost of the entire residential part of the 9-month project is being estimated at almost $3.4 million, with about $50,000 going into each unit. The developer also said he intends to shell out $150,000 to being upgrades to the theater to pay for things like sound, lighting and a video system. The fitness center is coming in at an estimated cost of about $200,000, excluding construction needed to open the school’s pool.
The committee held a public hearing last week where most speakers advised the panel to take its time before making any decisions. There has not been any follow up meeting for the committee scheduled as of yet.