TPF position on Amendment #19
Recently The Providence Foundation wrote to lawmakers expressing its opposition to RIDOT’s proposed Amendment #19 to the State Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), which reduces funding for pedestrian and bicycle projects around the state and significantly delays important work in Providence’s downtown parks.
The Providence Foundation was proud to support the state’s efforts to establish bike paths, pedestrian trails, and other enhancements promoting transportation alternatives as part of the Green Economy bond last November. As projects important to local economic development, public health, and community revitalization, it was dismaying to see funds for those projects shifted to bridge repair. While we support and appreciate the state’s concerted efforts to improve the condition of our bridges, it should not come at the expense of bicycle, pedestrian, and alternative transportation projects.
Additionally, the proposed TIP amendment would delay necessary work in Waterplace Park and the downtown riverwalk until 2026. These public spaces are the backbone of Providence’s downtown parks network and vital to attracting businesses, patrons, tourists, and investment to our capital city. With the recent opening of the pedestrian bridge, the upcoming dredging of the downtown rivers, and the opening of many new downtown hotels, these public space projects should be prioritized, not postponed.
It is our hope that the reduction of funding for pedestrian and bicycle projects and the delay of public space projects in downtown Providence will be withdrawn.