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.