I'm in this camp as well. Providence has a long established reputation of bucking the "Puritanical New England" trend. It's Boston's edgier little sibling to the south. I think this building exemplifies that. I see shades of Chicago's Aqua with this and that one works nicely in a cold climate. No reason this can't work here.Love the design. It looks "out of place" in Providence because of the old/conservative designs of what was built 10+ years ago. That should not be the reason to tone down this tower.
There was a public meeting last summer I went to and the architect said the podium was an "unfortunate reality" and went on and on about successful Toronto projects. They would never ever get away with that podium there.I do agree about the base though - would like to see something that does more to encourage the extension of Dorrance St.'s historic street wall. With the pedestrian bridge going in right there, this will be a new gateway to downtown and should reflect that in its urbanity.