Providence City Walk
We provided urban design, bicycle and pedestrian facility design, traffic engineering, and public engagement services to the City of Providence to assist in realizing the City Walk vision. At its core, City Walk is about improving connections between Providence neighborhoods and enhancing the everyday experience for all. Building on years of community support, City Walk will connect nine Providence neighborhoods to major recreational and civic amenities, including Roger Williams Park and India Point Park, the Southside Cultural Center, and the Children’s Museum, all while celebrating Providence’s diverse cultures.
This project included a dynamic public engagement process that consisted of focus groups, multi-lingual public meetings, paid community partners, and a tactical demonstration project showcasing a two-way separated bicycle facility (video here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Crkc5NPdCbo). The tactical demonstration project showcased a two-way separated bicycle facility between Public Street and Potters Avenue. It included curb extensions and ground murals painted by local artists. The demonstration project has proven invaluable in engaging the local community and developing local support for the City Walk initiative.
Supported by PeopleForBikes‘ Big Jump Project, the first 1.5 miles of City Walk were installed in 2019, connecting southwest Providence to the budding Providence Innovation and Design District. Future phases will continue the urban trail into the heart of South Providence, better serving a community with low-car ownership and a history of traffic crashes.
Between 2012 and 2017, 84 people walking or biking were involved in a crash with a car on Broad Street, making it the corridor with the most vulnerable user crashes in the State of Rhode Island. At the same time, over 40% walk, bike or use public transit to get around in this community.
The community saw what was possible for Broad Street during the demonstration project, and experienced a completely different street. The response was palpable: