June 24, 2019
This week's construction activity for the Downtown Transit Connector will be focused at the following two locations:
As always, other miscellaneous work will occur at other points along the corridor during the entire 2019 construction season. The nature and location of daily activities may vary from those highlighted in these updates due to weather, delays or other factors.
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The Downtown Transit Connector will provide high-frequency transit service (every 5 minutes in each direction) between the Providence Amtrak/MBTA Station and the Hospital District in Upper South Providence. There will be six paired stops along the corridor, each designed with a unique and highly-visible identity. The stops will include shelters, real-time bus arrival signage, and other passenger amenities. Opportunities to enhance RIPTA service using signal priority for buses or dedicated bus lanes will be included, as well as efforts to create attractive public spaces around each stop.
The $17 million project is funded by RIPTA and a USDOT Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant awarded to the City of Providence in 2014. Part of the funding will be used by RIPTA to purchase vehicles to operate the service.
The City of Providence introduced the JUMP Bike Share program in September, 2018. The system is partially funded through the DTC project. About 400 dockless, e-assist bicycles are available in downtown Providence along the DTC corridor and in surrounding neighborhoods.
Watch this flyover of the DTC corridor which highlights DTC station locations (in light blue), dedicated bus lanes (in red) and bike lanes (in green). These plans are based on preliminary design and may be updated as we move towards construction.
A second public information session was held in May 2017 to present design concepts for the DTC that will now advance into engineering. Six station locations were identified, along with dedicated bus lanes in certain segments. This meeting was jointly held with the City of Providence and included discussion of potential long term concepts for continuing to transform Kennedy Plaza as an active civic space while accommodating RIPTA buses. VIEW PRESENTATION
We held our first public information session in December 2016 to introduce the project to local residents and other stakeholders and to get input on the type of passenger amenities desired along the corridor. VIEW PRESENTATION
RIPTA CEO Scott Avedisian welcomed the entire RI Congressional delegation and Providence Mayor Elorza to mark the official start of construction on the Downtown Transit Connector (DTC). Avedisian noted the DTC will "create a spine across the City of Providence to move people effectively and efficiently." The project is largely being funded by a federal USDOT TIGER grant, with construction continuing through 2019.
TransitCenter, a foundation supporting transit leadership across the US visited Providence in February 2018 and highlighted the benefits of the anticipated DTC corridor on its national blog. Click here to read the post.
Construction activity began in August 2018 and will continue through 2019. Please check the home page for regular updates on construction work and location.
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RIPTA held a public meeting on March 5th to give RIPTA riders, downtown residents and local business owners an opportunity to learn more about the DTC.
We are working to finalize final design plans and to prepare for the start of DTC construction in the spring of 2018.
Jarrett Walker, an internationally renowned transit planning consultant toured the DTC route in March 2017, then reported on his blog "...it solves two urgent downtown problems at once. It provides the attractive and legible very-frequent spine that makes so many American urbanists want streetcars, but it also solves the problem of getting major bus line through downtown, so that the whole city benefits. It's an excellent project with relevance to many US downtowns. I encourage you to follow its progress."
Project engineers are working to lay out design concepts for stations and other amenities in the corridor. Please check back soon, as proposed concepts will be posted to the website as they are developed.
The DTC will serve six stops in four downtown Providence neighborhoods: the Hospital District, the Jewelry District, Downcity and Capital Center. Service will be operated by regular RIPTA routes that are extended to run along the corridor via Eddy Street, Dorrance Street, Kennedy Plaza and Exchange Street. Routes 50, 51, 55, 58, 62 and 72 will be extended south beyond Kennedy Plaza to RI Hospital, and that Routes 3 and 6 will be extended north to Providence Station.
Stops will be located at: 1) RI Hospital; 2) Eddy Street at South Street Landing; 3) Eddy Street at Ship Street; 4) Dorrance Street at Weybosett/Pine; 5) Kennedy Plaza; and 6) Providence Station. Service in the corridor will only stop at these stations. Designated bus and bike lanes will be added along certain segments and green lights will be extended for oncoming buses to help the speed and reliability of transit.VIEW MAP