Greenridge Commons, Fernwood win Smart Growth Awards

Greenridge Commons, a innovative development project by Neighborworks Blackstone River Valley as part of a larger redevelopment plan, sits just a mile outside of downtown Pascoag.

BURRILLVILLE – Two housing projects recently built in Pascoag have been recognized by Grow Smart Rhode Island, an organization that aims to honor innovative leadership, revitalization, policy and planning initiatives.

Fernwood and Greenridge Commons, affordable housing developments in the village designed and built by NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley, were among several initiatives across the state to be named “Outstanding Smart Growth Projects.”

Greenridge Commons, a 96-unit rental housing development off of Lapham Farm Road, was completed with a new community center in Pascoag this year. The 15-year, $28.5 million project includes 96 apartments and 7,000+ square feet of commercial space on Pascoag Main Street.

The Fernwood ‘Self-Help’ Housing project is a unique strategy to create homeownership opportunities for low-income families in rural communities using a cooperative, sweat-equity model.

“Both efforts exemplify the beauty of combining affordable housing with conservation development; almost 90 percent of the site’s 227-acres are deed restricted open space,” noted a release on the awards. “The developments illustrate Smart Growth principles promoting compact design, historic building patterns, retention of open space, use of existing infrastructure, rural Main Street revitalization and public transportation routes.”

Other honorees this year include:

Outstanding Smart Growth Leader: Barbara Fields, Housing & Community Development Leader

Outstanding Smart Growth Projects:  South Street Landing, Providence; Innovate Newport; 60 King, Providence

Outstanding Smart Growth Policy: Town of Warren; University of Rhode Island Transportation & Parking Master Plan, South Kingstown

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