RIDOT to Close Section of Coventry Greenway for Reconstruction

Bike path project to include new equestrian trail.


Update - August 15: According to RIDOT, the project is funded 80 percent Federal, 20 percent State, as is typical with most RIDOT projects. The Federal share is earmarked funding – a total of $15 million in two amounts from Senator Reed and then Senator (now Governor) Chafee.

The same funding would be applied to projects continuing the path westward on the Trestle Trail.

August 10: The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) announced Friday that it is scheduled to close a section of the Coventry Greenway in Coventry on Monday, August 20, 2012. The path will be closed to all users from Station Street to the area of Town Farm Road, where the path transitions to an undeveloped trail.

RIDOT is closing the path while it reconstructs this 2.7-mile segment of bikeway, which was built by the Town of Coventry approximately 20 years ago. Along with work on the bikeway itself, this $2.6 million contract with Cardi Corporation includes the construction of an equestrian trail that will run parallel to the bike path, beginning just west of where the path crosses Route 117 (Flat River Road). A new parking lot with spaces for horse trailers will be built at the beginning of the equestrian trail.

This section of the path is scheduled to remain closed until the completion of the project in Summer 2013. Because of the nature of work on the narrow right-of-way the path occupies, the Department must close it for the safety of cyclists and other path users.

“The decision to close a bikeway is made only after careful consideration of our options and a determination of how to ensure the safety of path users during construction,” RIDOT Director Michael P. Lewis said. “Unfortunately, in order to complete this project as quickly as possible, we must close the bikeway. We will endeavor to reopen the path as quickly as possible.”

No formal detour route will be established during this closure; however Route 117, which runs parallel to the bikeway for much of its length, is signed as a bike route.

The contract also includes the construction of a spur trail to the and with a new parking area. RIDOT will make improvements on another segment of the bikeway in the Anthony section of Coventry, constructing a shade structure and a canoe launch on the Pawtuxet River near the intersection of Pilgrim Avenue and Laurel Avenue. Temporary closures may be needed in this area during construction. Another section of the bikeway near Whitford Street and the West Warwick town line also will be subject to brief closures for drainage repair. 

Segments of the bikeway may reopen sooner as construction on individual sections is completed. Project updates and a map of the affected area can be found on RIDOT’s website at www.dot.ri.gov/bikeri.

Those with questions can contact RIDOT’s Customer Service office at 401-222-2450 weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Barbara September 08, 2012 at 03:59 PM
A horse trail, Really. I have to disagree with the responsible dog owner who picks up her dogs waste. Most dog owners DO NOT pick up after their animals. I can't wait to be dodging the Horse waste. I'm really disappointed at my town once again for a ridiculous decision that is probably politically based for someone that knows one person who wants to use the BIKE path for their horse, and also for shutting down the bike path at the most beautiful time of the year. Especially when it is used as a daily exercise route for a lot of residients not just for the one person who may bring their horse out for a trot. Jeez! people really, what a lot of wasted time and energy. How about you put that energy into the laural street bridge thats needed to be fixed for the past three years so we can use the other half of our town. I can just imagine how long this project will take. I doubt we'll be able to use our bike path for the next five years.
Stephanie Caldwell September 09, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Wah. Wah wah wah is all I can say to the "high horse" cyclists bashing this project. The Coventry Greenway, aka bike path, isn't just for you cranky cyclists who would prefer to have the road to themselves. It's for pedestrians, joggers, runners, dogs, roller bladers, kids on scooters and skateboards, babies in strollers, and now people on horses. It's less than 3 MILES that you are being asked to sacrifice and share. The last 3 miles before the path turns to dirt. Although I have to say I'm not surprised with all the negative reactions, seeing that 7 out of every 10 people on a bike act like everyone else should get out of their way out there. (except for that really nice cyclist that stopped to talk to me yesterday about the path closing) Big deal, 3 miles, that's what, all of 10 mins of your ride? I'm happy to have the horses and their riders. And I hope it improves business for the local farms who can expand their trail rides now. There's not a lot of place to ride for free in this state, I think it's nice that Coventry will be able to advertise that as part of this town now. It's not like their building a skate park in the middle of the path or anything. And the Laurel Street bridge has been under construction since the spring. Even though I wish that had started at least a year ago
Denise Fusco September 09, 2012 at 05:01 AM
Our schools have inadequate septic, roofing and heating systems. There are children in our town going to bed hungry at night. Many families are struggling to pay their mortgage and high taxes. And some one at RIDOT thinks a horse trail is a good idea????? Seriously RI get a grip!!! I too am a fairly positive person, but there is nothing positive about this crazy waste of tax payers hard earned $$$.
Stephanie Caldwell September 09, 2012 at 12:38 PM
I agree, it would be nice if our government would help those in hard times, but our friends in Congress seem to think that social assistance is socialist and unacceptable in this country. Which is a shame... Hopefully the trail project can redeem it's self with the employee's hired to work on it and anyone in the area that can benefit from it.
Uncle Bobee March 14, 2013 at 12:35 AM
Prepare to fill that glass !!!!! What ARE those large blue pipes they are installing ?? They appear to be 8-10 " pipes for water (?) ! Are they going to have horse-drinking fountains ???


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