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City Plan Commission approves new Brown Institutional Master Plan

Approval authorizes formal planning process for life sciences building, athletics facility

<p>The investigation follows a complaint filed by Zachary Marschall, editor-in-chief of conservative campus news site Campus Reform, which alleged the University discriminated against its students.</p>

The investigation follows a complaint filed by Zachary Marschall, editor-in-chief of conservative campus news site Campus Reform, which alleged the University discriminated against its students.

The Providence City Plan Commission approved the University’s new Institutional Master Plan — a document outlining Brown’s next five-to-ten years of physical developments — at a Sept. 19 meeting. 

The move approved the formal master planning process for the University’s planned integrated life sciences building in the Jewelry District and recently proposed indoor athletics practice facility on College Hill, according to a University press release. Both projects will require approval from the City and additional authorizations by the University before construction begins.

The University publicly presented plans for the ILSB and athletics facility in June and detailed plans for the projects in meetings with elected officials, residents, neighborhood associations and other community groups throughout the month. 

The ILSB will replace current University-owned properties at 233 and 261 Richmond Street and will include labs, offices and collaborative spaces, along with a forum, gallery and cafe on the ground floor. Among the next steps for the project are a review of the building’s height by the City’s Downtown Design Review Committee. 


The new athletics practice facility would feature an indoor turf field, replacing Meister-Kavan Field behind the Olney-Margolies Athletic Center.

In addition to details on the two projects, the IMP contains information and goals relating to the University’s physical development, campus footprint, infrastructure, impacts and priorities.

According to the new IMP, the University has completed 11 physical development projects — renovations and new construction for academic uses, residential halls, campus life and athletics — since the 2017 IMP. The projects anticipated over the next 10 years include residential and dining renewal, a new athletics facility, a development on Parcels 14 and 15 in the I-195 Redevelopment District and renovations to Barus and Holley and Prince Engineering Laboratories. 

Since the 2017 IMP, the University has acquired 21 properties and sold 11 properties. Brown currently owns 238 buildings on over 7.47 million square feet of property and also leases about 244,000 square feet of property. 

The IMP notes that University priorities include the ILSB, the proposed indoor athletic practice facility and the continuation of Brown to Brown home ownership program, which sells Brown-owned residential properties to eligible faculty and staff. According to the plan, construction of a new two-story home was completed in summer 2022, and there are plans to renovate two additional homes as well. 

The new IMP also includes updates from Around Brown, the University’s transportation management plan completed in 2022, along with an updated stormwater master plan.


Rhea Rasquinha

Rhea Rasquinha is a Metro Section Editor covering Development and Infrastructure and also serves as Co-Chief of Illustrations. She previously covered the College Hill, Fox Point & the Jewelry District and Brown & Beyond beats. Rhea is a junior from New York studying Biomedical Engineering and loves dark chocolate and penguins.


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