With construction work slated to begin early in January on the Newport Transportation and Visitors Center, the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) announced that bus stops will be temporarily relocated to America’s Cup Avenue. Passengers will be picked up and dropped off on America’s Cup Avenue for duration of the project. The temporary bus stops – which will be marked with signs on the west side of the street – will be used from January 9, 2017 until the project is completed in the spring. The project, which will repair and restore the exterior passenger waiting area of the transportation hub and visitors center, is expected to be completed by late spring 2017.
Bus stops for RIPTA Routes 14, 60, 63, 67 64, and 231 (Flex Service), as well as Peter Pan Bus Lines will be temporarily relocated to five clearly marked stops on America’s Cup Avenue (map attached). Starting the week of January 2, 2017, there will be some road construction work to implement a right lane closure on America’s Cup Avenue in order to accommodate the temporary bus stops. America’s Cup Avenue will be narrowed from Gladys Carr Bolhouse Road to West Marlborough Street. RIPTA has maps available at the Visitors Center and information is available on RIPTA’s website at: https://www.ripta.com/newport-gateway-center. During construction, the Visitors Center will be open for business. RIPTA has been working in conjunction with the City of Newport and the Rhode Island Department of Transportation.
The roughly $6 million project, which is being funded by a 90-percent
federal grant with a 10-percent match from the City of Newport, will repair the exterior area of the center which welcomes hundreds of thousands of tourist and transit passengers every year. The exterior of the facility, which originally consisted of sail-like canopies covering bus berths and pedestrian areas, was badly damaged in 2012 by
Superstorm Sandy. Since then, with the help of Rhode Island’s Congressional delegation, RIPTA has pursued grant funding from the Federal Transit Administration under a program designated specifically for projects that will repair and improve the resiliency of transit facilities damaged by the storm. The goal is to have the project completed before the start of the summer tourist season.
The repair will involve replacing the old canopy covering with a permanent roof that will provide better passenger protection and also be more resilient to future storms. The roofs will be two-tiered with glass dormers improving aesthetics and letting in natural light. Sidewalks and parking areas will be repaved and on-site drainage will be improved in order to comply with Newport’s progressive sewer codes. Much of this will be accomplished by adding landscaped areas or “rain gardens” which will be as attractive as they are practical. There will also be improved signage and lighting.
For more information on RIPTA’s services, visit RIPTA.com or call 401-781-9400.