AS220 plans to expand downtown

AS220, the nonprofit arts bastion, doubled its downtown footprint with its Dreyfus Hotel project. If everything goes according to plan, AS220 will again double its presence when it pursues a project in the Washington Street property (once home to the Providence Phoenix) anchored by the former Cogens Printing operation.

Artistic director Bert Crenca says the new project, which is envisioned for a mix of residential and retail uses, is intended to help counter some of the gentrification and upscale development taking place in downtown Providence. It is hoped that individually owned quirky busineses will take up some of the retail space.

(In a related note, Dan Barbarisi reports today on the clash between some residents of the Cosmopolitan and the relocated Murphy's Deli. We've made our views known about these sorts of conflicts, which became more common as well-heeled types have moved into the Jewelry District over the last 10 or 20 years.)

AS220's anticipated new development is located next to the site of what has been planned as a Sierra Suites Hotel.

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