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ProJo: Providence ‘unfriendly’ to business

A New York-based developer who considered bidding on a piece of the Route 195 land says he chose not to because the city is “an unfriendly environment for business.”

Commercial real-estate developer Richard Miller, of The Pegasus Group, visited Rhode Island in 2011 and again this spring; he liked what he saw enough to pick a potential parcel on the western side of the river near Chestnut Street.

But in the end, his team chose not to submit a proposal to the Route 195 Redevelopment District Commission, which controls about 40 acres in the heart of the city, 20 of which are available for development.

The commission’s executive director, Jan A. Brodie, speaks frequently about the cost of building in Providence compared with the income generated here. Building costs are similar to New York and Boston, but the revenue from these projects is much lower.

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