Since last Friday, I have been inundated with calls, texts, and emails asking me where I stand on the issue of the Hope Point Tower. Since this development was proposed, I have remained neutral and steadfast in my request to find out more information on the project and what it truly means for the City of Providence, and more specifically, for my neighbors in Ward 11.
Since even before taking office, my interests and goals for my community have focused on equitable housing, and how the Council as the legislative body of Providence can reduce the tax burden for our citizens. Since this project first came before the Committee on Ordinances, I have been talking with stakeholders, community members, advocates, and those opposed to this project to gain a fuller picture of how a development of this magnitude would help or hurt the city I love.
It’s clear to me why many oppose this project, but it is less clear why and what the real, long-lasting benefits are for this City and my neighbors. I’ve read that I have little time to come to a conclusion on this matter, but I am working hard on behalf of my neighbors and all citizens of Providence to come to a decision that will be in our best interest.
Finally, as a former a tradeswoman (yes, I was a welder), I am in full support of our tradespeople and our unions. I know full well what this kind of project can mean for the men and women who work to build our City every day. However, I am thinking about and reflecting on the totality of this project.
To all those who have offered support, guidance, and advice, or shared insight, I am grateful. Governing should never be done in a vacuum, and I am very proud of how my colleagues on the City Council have engaged in spirited debate and discussion on this matter.
Mary Kay Harris, Councilwoman – Ward 11
Providence City Council