Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Pawtucket 06-12-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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PAWTUCKET EDITION | VALLEY BREEZE | JUNE 12-18, 2019 PAWTUCKET 5 PAWTUCKET – When Shri Yoga owner Alison Bologna announced in March that she was investing in a property within the Transit-Oriented Development district surrounding a coming new train station, at the corner of Conant and Pine Street, she hinted that it was part of a larger strategic plan with the city. That broader plan, according to Commerce Director Jeanne Boyle, involves a "multi-pronged approach" that invests heavily into the TOD district with hopes that it will have a "spinoff effect" into the rest of the downtown. Corresponding efforts to improve bus, bike, scooter and pedestrian transportation is meant to con- nect what's happening around the coming train station with other ongoing projects along Main Street and elsewhere, she said, including Leslie Moore's project at 250 Main St., the planned redevelopment of the former Narragansett Bay Insurance Company at 217 Main St., and the mostly vacant Apex property at 100 Main St., where officials are still pushing redevel- opment efforts. Officials' efforts encompass infra- structure, financing and zoning, along with a revamped parking garage, in "catalyzing some of the activity in downtown," she said. Zoning changes made last fall were meant to encourage more active uses in downtown. The Pawtucket Business Development Corp. is also offering targeted loan options for small businesses. Infrastructure improvements will help more people connect to the coming train station, she said, ensuring that it's "not separate and apart from the downtown." "The hope is that the activity in the TOD will lead to a lot of the transformation in the downtown (and the) Broad Street initiative," she said. A federal opportunity zone in the downtown and riverfront area is bearing fruit, she said, and the city is also working on legislative efforts to augment that opportunity zone, which gives developers tax credits and will hopefully allow it to "emerge and compete for out- side investment capital." At least a couple of developers are look- ing at purchasing properties in the downtown area because of those changes, Boyle said. Pawtucket's elected officials are also working on legislation to turn a former "super TIF" (tax incre- ment financing) plan previously proposed for the area around a downtown stadium for the PawSox into a financing tool to be used by other projects. The super TIF would be expanded to new bound- aries and used on a broader scale to promote growth in the down- town and riverfront. In moving to the new mill space, from her former downtown space at the Pawtucket Armory on Exchange Street, Bologna told The Providence Journal she wanted to make a more permanent invest- ment in the city in a section of the city she could see greater econom- ic growth in the near future. She's planning a $3 million investment including four commercial spaces and eight apartments. City taking multi-pronged approach to downtown development By ETHAN SHOREY Valley Breeze Managing Editor Library Association awards librarians, library professionals, and library supporters SMITHFIELD – The Rhode Island Library Association and its sections, the Rhode Island Coalition of Library Advocates and School Librarians of Rhode Island, presented annual awards at the RILA Annual Conference, held May 22-23, at Bryant University. Local winners included: The SLRI 2019 Awards: • Mini Grants: Cynthia Alexandre, to increase student access to diverse titles at higher reading levels at Goff Middle School in Pawtucket. Woonsocket Class of 1964 hosts reunion WOONSOCKET – The Woonsocket High School Class of 1964 will host a 55-year class reunion on Friday, Sept. 6, at Kirkbrae Country Club, 197 Old River Road. Social hour will be held from 5 to 6 p.m. A dinner buffet will begin at 6 p.m. Cost is $45 per person. Responses are due by Thursday, Aug. 15. Call Ron Campano at 508-883-6764 for more information. Mail checks to: Ron Campano 31 Fox Run Road Bellingham, MA 02019 IN BRIEF Place your classified ad online at L The Mini Dental Implant Center Plainville Dental Care 13 Taunton Street, Plainville, MA 02762 508-699-4822 Dr. Peyman Beigi, a graduate of Tufts University, School of Dental Medicine, is a proud member of the Massachusetts Dental Society & American Dental Association. 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