In 1976, Ron Marsella stepped down as the first director of the Providence Foundation, an arm of the Chamber of Commerce, to establish Urban Consultants, a consulting group that has received local and national recognition for its catalytic role in the creation and implementation of the Capital Center and Promenade Center projects in Providence, RI as well as the Gateway Center in Newport, RI. The Capital Center project is widely credited as the single most important urban renewal initiative in the history of Providence. The Capital Center District now includes two hotels, the convention center, train station, seven office buildings, 4 luxury residential towers and the Providence Place retail mall. The Gateway Center in Newport represents a unique undertaking transforming former railroad and oil distribution facilities into the Newport Visitors Center as well as a full service Marriott Hotel with supporting retail and residential uses.
In addition to consulting and public development projects, Marsella Development continued to expand its own real estate portfolio and Marsella Property Management was created to manage the assets in its own portfolio as well as properties owned by other investors. Marsella Property Management, commonly known as MPM, quickly became the leader of Class-A office building management by consistently achieving the highest occupancy and rates within their class across the city.