Providence > Downcity
The Downcity Partnership, Inc.
One Union Station, Providence, RI 02903, Tel 401.274.5972, Fax 401.274.6236,
Our Mission: The Downcity Partnership, Inc. is a leader and
a collaborator in the continuing renaissance of downtown Providence.
The Partnership works in concert with business, institutional, neighborhood,
and civic leaders to transform the Downcity Arts and Entertainment
District as a vibrant, diverse, and authentic community in the historic
heart of downtown.
Our Partners: Our two most critical partners are the City
of Providence and the Providence Foundation, the downtown-wide membership
association. The Partnership also works closely with a host
of public and private groups from various communities including
higher education, businesses and professionals, arts and entertainment,
property owners, financial institutions, developers, preservationists,
religious congregations, residents, community services, and government
Our Primary Roles and Strategies: The Partnership plays two
equally important roles:
1. The Principal Advocate for Downcity: We provide a forum
for the wide range of public and private partners to work collaboratively
on community problem solving for Downcity. We aim to magnify
the positive impacts of the individual partners and help focus their
combined energies on overcoming obstacles to continued revitalization.
The Downcity Arts and Entertainment District needs a coordinated
strategy of economic development, urban design, historic
preservation, public services, and community building.
The Partnership is in a unique position to play this coordinating
role and to become the ?keeper of the vision? for a revitalized
One example of this advocacy role is a strategy we call Coordinated
Arts and Retail Management, which the Partnership will launch this
fall. Working cooperatively with property owners, merchants,
arts and entertainment businesses, lenders, and the City, we will
guide a cooperative program to strengthen and redefine Downcity?s
ailing retail niche. We will assist in recruiting and retaining
a realistic mix of specialty shops, galleries, and restaurants in
mutually supportive, economically sustainable clusters and districts.
2. A Lender of Gap Financing: We will stimulate appropriate
real estate and business development with a revolving loan fund
to fill the gap between the costs of projects and the conventional
sources of funds. Our emphasis is real estate lending, particularly
for the rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of underutilized historic
structures. The source of our Revitalization Loan
Fund is a $9 million "program related investment" of the
Rhode Island Foundation. We use our loan commitments to leverage
more conventional financing and strive to keep our loans no more
than 10% of total project cost with a typical maximum for any single
project of $1 million.