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Eco RI Features Transport Providence Proposals

James Kennedy, author of the blog Transport Providence and a leading advocate of tearing the 6-10 Connector down, admitted the boulevard idea is toast, but he is pursuing a new set of demands that fall within the scope of the compromise design.Via a recent blog post, Kennedy proposed separated bike lanes — not just painted lanes — on each bridge crossing the highway, along with narrow traffic lanes. He also recommended a network of on-street, separated bike lanes in the neighborhoods surrounding the project, instead of the proposed off-street bicycle path that would hug the noisy highway.Kennedy’s most intriguing idea is to reserve the Tobey Street bridge for pedestrians and bicycles only. He detailed this plan in a piece for RI Future, in which he also recommended eliminating a redundant city street near the bridge in favor of building housing.
Eco RI News' staff reporter, Kevin Proft, also caught a detail of the plans that Transport Providence has yet to report on. RIDOT features an image of the Westminster Street bridge that has two lanes, but actually intends to build the bridge to a four-lane "stroad" design. 

As Eco RI points out, this image of a future Westminster Street is a bait-and-switch that suggests a smaller, more neighborhood-scale bridge where a four-lane one is actually intended. This bridge also does not have protected bike lanes, which is unacceptable.
Transport Providence calls for RIDOT and Providence Planning to address this bait-and-switch design. Not only does a four-lane bridge make the proposal less functional, but it also makes the bridge more expensive to maintain in the long-run. Rhode Islanders are being cheated every time RIDOT proposes such plans, and it is the duty of Mayor Jorge Elorza and Providence Planning director Bonnie Nickerson to object loudly to these types of plans.
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