Transit advocates say pump breaks on downtown busing proposal

The idea of moving buses out of Kennedy Plaza has long been a key component of a centralized transportation hub for Providence. But the idea was to move them to a location that improved transportation access. Now the state has moved away from the plan of a single, intramodal station near Providence Station and is

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  1. The fallacy is Avedisian’s comment on transfers is that its focus is on the present and is not visionary as to what it could be. The low transfer rate is itself a sign that the RIPTA system has deficiencies. Rhode Island needs a long-term plan on public transit which should include Amtrak, the “T” and RIPTA. First the State needs to make an investment in grafting onto the “T” light rail lines that service just RI. That means integrating a system from Westerly to Providence, possibly a spur to Woonsocket. In addition to present stations, this will require new stations at Kingston (URI), East Greenwich, Cranston, possibly Olneyville. With such a concept then the need is for RIPTA to integrate its system with the “T”. This calls for the very thing they have dropped – an intermodal center located below grade at the Amtrak Providence Station. In this way RIPTA bus riders can connect to the “T”, the RI “T”, and Amtrak. All of these actions will see transfers soar, a sure sign the system works.

    Taking the buses out Kennedy Plaza means we restore that space to a place more beautiful and useful and not as some gigantic waiting room replete with its bored, poorly postured clientele. By putting bus riders in a spacious indoor space you keep them out of the elements, cool in summer, warm in winter and because the space is easier to provide surveillance then the riders will be free from predators. Other cities have moved centers to below grade for efficiency, RI should do the same. We need a better and more comprehension vision of public transit in RI.