Revised design for Hope Point tower presented to city committee

The new design for the Hope Point tower. Courtesy City of Providence
THE NEW DESIGN for the Hope Point tower, at right, in comparison with the Wexford Science & Technology building, at left. / COURTESY CITY OF PROVIDENCE

PROVIDENCE — A slightly revised design for the Hope Point tower was presented conceptually to the Downtown Design Review Committee Monday, a panel that has advisory authority over its architecture and site plan.

The project, now called Hope Point, would place 448 residential units in a 46-story tower at Dyer Street downtown, overlooking the Providence River and a park under development.

The project architect, Gianni Ria, a director of the IBI Group in Toronto, told committee members that the greatest change to the design was in the parking podium. It remains six stories high, he said, but has been modified to more closely resemble a shape that would give the structure the appearance of a flatiron building.

Two design options were presented to the committee, each with slightly different materials on the exterior of the parking garage.

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Both would include some form of painted glass panels as exterior, to hide the cars from view and provide interest to pedestrians, Ria said.

“The pedestrian experience is critical,” he said.

The residential tower portion of the building appeared to be unchanged, and would remain the same height.

Although the design review committee is not charged with reviewing marketing plans for the project, and Ria emphasized that he did not have expertise in that area, he told committee members that plans now call for condominiums throughout, rather than the mix of rental apartments and condos initially proposed by developer Jason Fane.

Fane, who is president of The Fane Organization, attended the meeting but did not address the committee members. The meeting was intended to be a preliminary presentation of design options. A formal presentation will come later, along with a public hearing.

Committee members, who will advise the I-195 Redevelopment District Commission about the project, had several criticisms of the design. Members said they remained unconvinced the height of the structure will fit in in Providence.

Several also questioned why the building is not designed to interact with the park itself, which it would face.

Clark Schoettle, a committee member, asked why it was so important for the project to be located on the park itself, if it did not interact with the space.

“Why do you want to be on the park, when it doesn’t appear you are taking advantage of it?”

Ria explained that the location provides the building with height and views for the units, and access to mass transit within walking distance. As part of the package of information provided to the committee, the architect and developer included a sample floor layout. It had units ranging in size from 285 square feet to 1,220 square feet, with notations describing layouts from studios to 3 bedrooms.

“We believe this design is going to be very successful to market,” he said.

As for the design itself, he said it is intended to be compatible with the Wexford Science & Technology building, now under construction across Dyer Street.

Several of the new renderings presented to the committee members on Monday emphasized how the building might appear in context with the Wexford building.

Mary MacDonald is a staff writer for the PBN. Contact her at

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  1. I am so excited this tower ever. I wonder is Hope Point Tower is same 530 foot height? and also is this tower rendering same white wavy tower correct? So I don’t want to change revised white wavy tower because I really WANT better this white wavy tower! I can’t wait to see!