A Win On Parking & Parks Improvements
City Presents Alternative Parking Plan
Providence’s Parking Administrator Leo Perrotta offered some alternatives to the installation of parking meters at a meeting with the Wickenden Area Merchants Association, according to WAMA President Vincent Scorziello.
The parking changes, included installation of signage at the intersection of Brook and Wickenden streets, which would direct motorists to the parking lot behind Coffee Exchange, Zcorziello reports. “They also expanded two-hour parking zones by converting some of the “loading zone” parking designations along Wickenden Street.”
Perrotta also pledged to renew enforcement of the two-hour parking zones, by increasing patrols of parking personnel. “We have no definite answer, yet, regarding parking meters on Wickenden Street,” Scorziello adds. “But, it appears the City is working with us towards a mutually agreeable solution of increasing turnover of parking spaces without installation of parking meters.”
Major Park Improvements Begin
There are two major projects underway by the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, RIDOT, which will drastically improve Fox Point’s two riverfronts, according to Lambri Zerva, supervising civil engineer.
On the Providence River, Zerva said the Pedestrian Bridge’s design phase is “at 100%, near final submission,” followed with advertising bids by mid-summer. “There could be some site development in the fall, but there are other components, like steel manufactured elements,” that could push the project towards a completion date in 2017 or early 2018, Zerva adds.
Described as an “elegant” design, the new Providence River Pedestrian Bridge will connect the city’s two new riverside parks. The design was a result of the early involvement of the Providence Foundation, a lively 2010 design competition and continued involvement of the I-195 Redevelopment Commission.
On Fox Point’s eastern border, construction of the long-awaited extension of the Blackstone Bikeway means planned improvements in Gano Park are on the horizon, as well. Those two elements—the bikeway and the park—anchor the emerging Fox Point Greenway, according the Providence Department of Planning and Development. The greenway begins where the East River Road emerges from the Henderson Bridge Overpass and continues all the way to India Point Park.
Zerva said RIDOT would be clearing the proposed site of the new Gano Dog Park, so that the Providence Department of Parks could install the necessary fencing. The new location, adjacent to the Crooks Point Bridge, will mean removal of the fencing to the existing park. Currently, the existing dog park blocks a connection of Gano Park with its Boat Launch.
Back in 2014, FPNA and the planning department hosted a stakeholders meeting, which was attended by about 25 City and State governmental professionals, environmentalists, historic preservation advocates and residents of the neighborhood. The stakeholders met to develop a comprehensive plan for the greenway to connect major bikeways and waterways with many destinations along the way.
Discussion of existing and potential greenway destinations addressed at the stakeholders meeting included Richmond Square, Crook Point Bridge, a possible bikeway spur to Gano Street, relocation of the dog park, and the wetland area adjacent to the I-195 Gano Street exit. For a complete look at the route and destinations, go to www.fpna.net and click on the pdf at the bottom of landing page.
Community Outreach This Spring
FPNA sent out about 350 membership solicitations from its database of members and former members, according to Daisy Schnepel, FPNA vice president. “We rely very heavily on these contributions to keep the membership informed, host bi-annual membership meetings, advocate for quality-of-life issues and fund neighborhood improvements.”
FPNA also reached out by sending its second informational packet to new residents, who have moved to the neighborhood during the last six months, according to board member Alissa Peterson. “We sent a mailing out to 60 potential new members, which included a welcome letter, membership solicitation and certificates from the Wickenden Area Merchants Association, WAMA.”
For older Fox Pointers, FPNA recommends that they get in touch with the Providence Village, a local nonprofit dedicated to helping seniors remain in their homes and communities as they age. Located in Hamilton House, 276 Angell Street, Providence Village has volunteers and a small staff to answer all residents’ questions, according to the group’s director, Ann W. Connor. To learn more about the village movement, visit www.vtvnetwork.org, Connor said, adding the Providence Village can be reached at 401-441-5240 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks to Our Earth Day Volunteers!
A portion of the Providence River Walk near the hurricane barrier got an Earth Day makeover, thanks to the volunteers and Greenwood Landscape Design of Cranston, according to board member Alissa Peterson.“Sam Greenwood reviewed the site and selected plants based on FPNA’s budget and terrain conditions,” Peterson noted. “He donated some plants, hand selected the rest and delivered them all to the site, she adds. “FPNA is so grateful!”
“We also had a good team of volunteers, who worked to beautify the Providence River Walk Park,” she said. “The enthusiasm in our community for improving our public spaces is inspirational!”
Photo: Landscape designer Sam Greenwood and a good turnout of volunteers transformed this area of the Providence River Walk, near the hurricane barrier on Earth Day.