The May meeting of the Summit Neighborhood Association was held at the Mount Hope Learning Center on May 21st.

Yard Sale | Thanks to everyone who made our 16th Annual Yard Sale a big success. The sales netted over $2000 after expenses and donations to Holy Redeemer church for hosting us. The proceeds will pay for the newsletter distribution over the next year, which goes to all households in Summit and a good part of Mt. Hope.

North Main Vision Project | Randy from Gates Leighton has started doing base data gathering on North Main. Created panoramic pictorial views of the whole street. From DPD, we received a valuable fly-over map of the North Main corridor under consideration, from Branch to Hillside (Pawtucket line). Conversations with Providence Planning and Development, and major property owners.

The goal of the project is to create and communicate a vision of North Main that the community can buy into, and that can serve as a common meeting point of agreement with the City as the Comprehensive and Zoning plans are worked through. In sync, the neighborhood and the City can proactively reach out to developers and investors who are more likely to be on the same page andabout future North Main development.

Other non-profits that work in Providence community development are being engaged in the conversation. Rhode Island Housing considers North Main to be a priority area; SNA must further explore what this means. SNA is also engaging SWAP to get their input on the underutilized properties.

An exploratory visit to the Penalty Box, under new ownership and completely revamped, was enjoyably worthwhile! They will host a meeting with the North Main business owners on June 13th.

Empowerment Network from Mt. Hope is having a “Green Up” on June 13th, where SNA will have a table to talk about North Main. We are looking for a keystone event to get Summit neighbor input before summer gets in full swing. An emphasis should be to engage the streets adjacent to North Main, especially west of the corridor.

The next meeting of the North Main working group is May 30th.

Comprehensive Plan | The open meeting process is continuing, with groups representing diverse points of view, across neighborhoods, hospitals, universities, business groups, and non-profits. The CPC will hear all the comments, handed out and summarized by the DPD staff. The public comment period has ended, and our SNA board members who focus on zoning have submitted their responses individually through the website.

The comprehensive plan is written generally, and contains principles which address and include most people’s and organization’s concerns; it is difficult to critique and take a policy stance on it. However, it is obvious that there is a danger that the “plan first, zone after” approach that was the consensus of the community in 2006 will be compromised. Although the state has waived the requirement of a new comprehensive plan submission by the city, the comprehensive plan process is being pushed forward to completion by an end date. Implicitly, there appears to be no other reason for this than to pass a new zoning ordinance in December 2007, before neighborhood plans are finished.

The online comment browser on the Providence Tomorrow website allows you to view by individual, so that each contributor’s comments can be read to understand the contributor’s point of view.

2007 Goals | SNA’s goals for 2007 are North Main Street and better engaging our neighborhood and helping them to build neighbor-neighbor relationships. We could accomplish this either through better and more frequent communications, or fun sponsored events. Kickball, anyone?

Miscellaneous | Shooting nearby the neighborhood at the Pawtucket border, on Lafayette and Swan, near Hillside – drug deal gone bad. A board member was witness to the aftermath.

YMCA Child Care on North Main is closing.