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RIPTA Public Hearings

RIPTA to Hold Statewide Public Hearings on Proposed Service Changes

Ridership & Workforce Shortage Drive Service Changes Proposal

Hearings Scheduled February 12 – 15, February 19 and February 21

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) will hold public hearings on proposed service changes in all five Rhode Island counties on February 12 – 15, February 19 and February 21, 2024. The Authority announced that the reductions in service statewide are a direct response to its driver shortage, which is a longstanding issue that RIPTA has been trying to address over the past few years. This shortage is not related to the proposed FY2025 budget. Despite extensive recruitment efforts, drivers continue to retire more quickly than RIPTA can recruit new ones.  RIPTA is actively working with Amalgamated Transit Union leadership to find a solution to this issue. The labor shortage, which is affecting transit agencies nationwide, has a direct impact on the level of service that RIPTA can provide. RIPTA must recalibrate its schedules with the level of service it can consistently run, so that service is accurate and reliable for passengers.

The proposed service changes are based on data which identified the lowest performing routes and trip times; changes include redistributing resources from low-performing routes to high-performing routes. The proposed service changes would affect thirty-three (33) regular bus routes and include the elimination of routes or route segments, the decrease of service frequency, as well as the increase of service frequency on some high performing routes.

Additionally, because ADA service is offered within a ¾ mile corridor of fixed-route service, the paratransit ADA service that RIPTA provides through the RIde Program would also be reduced wherever there is the elimination of a route or a segment of a route.

“Our goal is to ensure we can meet 100% of our scheduled service 100% of the time. In order to do that, as painful as it is, we must make prudent changes, particularly given our workforce challenges,” said Scott Avedisian, RIPTA CEO. “In the meantime, we are actively working with our union to create a new starting wage for drivers that should address our recruiting challenges and help RIPTA better execute its mission.”

Avedisian added that “aligning our current staffing levels with the service we can provide will eliminate missed trips and improve the passenger experience.” RIPTA plans to reinstate service based on ridership – and in line with statewide Transit Master Plan goals – once the Agency can significantly increase its workforce to offset retirements.

Public hearings will address service changes to Routes 4, 6, 9x, 13, 14, 16, 18, 21, 29, 30, 51, 54, 58, 64, 65x, 69, 71, 72, 75, 87, 92 and 95x and the elimination of Routes QX, 10x, 12x, 23, 59x, 61x, 68, 73, 76, 80 and 88. Additionally, emergency temporary service changes made in Fall 2022 to Routes 22, 27, 28, 31, 50, 55, 56, 57, 60, 63, and 67 will also be addressed.

All interested parties are invited to submit comments concerning the proposed service changes by February 22, 2024. Comments may be sent to RIPTA, Office of the CEO, 705 Elmwood Ave., Providence, RI, 02907. Comments may also be sent to marketing@ripta.com or by calling (401) 784-9500 ext. 1101. 

The proposed service changes are as follows:


Increase in Trip Frequency or Number of Trips

Route 51 (Charles St./Twin River/CCRI)

Route 54 (Lincoln/Woonsocket)

Route 72 (Weeden/Central Falls)

Route 92 (East Side/Federal Hill/RI College)

Trip Time Changes for Better Service Reliability

Route 14 (West Bay)

Route 16 (Bald Hill /New England Tech)

Route 21 (Reservoir/Malls/ CCRI)

Route 58 (Mineral Spring/North Providence)

Route 72 (Weeden/Central Falls)

Route 92 (East Side/Federal Hill/RI College)

Regular Route Eliminations

Route QX (Quonset Express)

Route 10x (North Scituate Park-n-Ride)

Route 12x (Arctic/117 Express Park-n-Ride)

Route 23 (Arctic/Crompton/Centre of NE)

Route 59x (North Smithfield/Lincoln Mall)

Route 61x (Tiverton/East Bay Park-n-Ride)

Route 68 (CCRI Newport/Memorial Blvd./First Beach)

Route 73 (Mineral Spring/Twin River/CCRI)

Route 76 (Central Ave.)

Route 80 (Armistice Blvd.)

Route 88 (Simmons Village Service)

Route Segment Eliminations –  Eliminated Segment

Route 6 (Prairie Ave./CCRI/RW Zoo) – Service to Colony House proposed to be discontinued.

Route 14 (West Bay) – North Kingstown to Narragansett (Saturday only) proposed to be discontinued.

Route 16 (Bald Hill /New England Tech) – Service between New England Tech and Quonset proposed to be discontinued.

Route 58 (Mineral Spring/North Providence) – Mineral Spring to Rte. 146 (one trip affected) proposed to be discontinued.

Route 64 (Newport/URI Kingston) – Route 64 will no longer operate on Boston Neck Rd. or service URI Bay Campus.

Elimination of Saturday Service  

Route 18 (Union Ave.)

Route 58 (Mineral Spring/North Providence)

Route 64 (Newport/URI/Kingston Station)

Elimination of Sunday Service  

Route 4 (Warwick Ave./West Shore)

Route 16 (Bald Hill /New England Tech)

Route 71 (Broad St./Central Falls)

Route 69 (URI/Galilee)

Elimination of All Weekend Service        

Route 6 (Prairie Ave./CCRI/RW Zoo)

Route 13 (Coventry/Arctic/CCRI)

Route 29 (CCRI Warwick/Conimicut)

Route 30 (Arlington/Oaklawn)

Route 75 (Dexter/Lincoln Mall)

Reduction in Trip Frequency or Number of Trips

Route 6 (Prairie Ave./CCRI/RW Zoo) – Frequency proposed to change from 30 to 60 minutes.

Route 9x (Pascoag Express) – Service proposed to be reduced from 6 round trips to 3 round trips.

Route 16 (Bald Hill /New England Tech) – Weekday and Saturday frequency proposed to change from 60 to 70 minutes.

Route 18 (Union Ave.) – Frequency proposed to change from30 to 60 minutes.

Route 21 (Reservoir/Malls/CCRI) – Saturday frequency proposed to change from 40 to 50 minutes.

Route 64 (Newport/URI Kingston) – Route 64 has been re-aligned to operate express via Rte. 138 East – Rte. 1 South – Rte. 138 East.  Route 64 will no longer operate on Boston Neck Rd. or service URI Bay Campus.

Route 65x (Wakefield Express) – Peak trips proposed to be changed from 3 morning and afternoon trips to 2 morning and afternoon trips.

Route 87 (Fairmount/Walnut Hill) – Saturday and Sunday frequency proposed to change from 40 to 80 minutes.

Route 95x (Westerly Express) – Service proposed to be reduced from 4 round trips to 2 round trips.

Schedule for Public Hearings

The public hearing schedule is as follows: 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Barrington Public Library, 281 County Road, Barrington

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

Tuesday, February 13, 2024 – POSTPONED DUE TO WINTER STORM

Pawtucket Public Library, 13 Summer Street, Pawtucket

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Providence Foundation, 30 Exchange Terrace, Providence

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Newport CCRI Auditorium, One John H. Chafee Blvd., Newport

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

Monday, February 19, 2024

URI Memorial Union, Room 360, 50 Lower College Road, Kingston

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Blackstone Valley Visitor Center, 175 Main Street, Pawtucket

Time: 5:30pm – 7pm

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

West Warwick Public Library, 1043 Main Street, West Warwick

Times: 12:30pm – 2pm & 5:30pm – 7pm

These hearings will be accessible to people with disabilities and people with limited English proficiency.  RIPTA will provide translation and interpreter services for the deaf and hearing impaired, provided such a request is made at least 72 hours prior to the hearing date. A request for this service can be made by calling (401) 784-9500 ex. 1242 or 800-745-5555 (RI Relay TDD).


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