At an unveiling ceremony on Monday, April 15th, RIDOT Director Mike Lewis gathered with several partners to confirm their vision, leadership and commitment to improving the plaza surrounding the train station. Lewis called the Providence station the ‘transportation front door to the state,’ and acknowledged that it needs attention. Since the station was built in 1986, ridership through Providence has increased significantly, with 700,000 Amtrak passengers and 300,000 MBTA passengers per year. Providence now ranks as the 16th busiest of 500 stations across the country.
Through funds reapplied from the Wickford Junction project in addition to other resources, the plaza design will be enhanced with upgraded landscaping, surface repairs, improved ADA compliance for accessibility, and the relocation of the taxi stand to Gaspee Street.
Together with the new rail stations at the airport and Wickford Junction, this project helps to create a seamless transportation system across the state. Future goals include building an alternate platform in Kingston to accommodate Acela trains and commuter rail, plus expanded capacity for intercontinental flights at T.F. Green Airport.
Governor Lincoln Chafee praised the collaborative efforts of our congressional delegation along with Providence Mayor Angel Taveras, RIPTA, The Providence Foundation, Providence Place and others. The governor was joined by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Senator Jack Reed and Congressmen Jim Langevin and David Cicilline, as well as Drew Galloway, chief of Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor planning. Read more details from Providence Business News here.
Images: courtesy of Vanasse, Hangen, Brustlin, Inc.