This week, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT), Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian and Cranston Mayor Allan Fung announced the completion of work on the bridge spanning the Pawtuxet River in Pawtuxet Village.
The project included repair to the existing red brick sidewalks on both sides of the bridge. The Pawtuxet Village Association was instrumental in having the red brick walkways created many years ago. The repairs were finished by RIDOT’s Highway and Bridge Maintenance Division last week.
“The department was pleased to be able to make these improvements quickly, improving both the aesthetic look of the bridge and village and pedestrian safety,” RIDOT Director Michael P. Lewis said.
Spanning the Pawtuxet, the bridge is a focal point for activities in the historic village of Pawtuxet, home to the annual Gaspee Days celebration that commemorates the burning of the HMS Gaspee in 1772, considered the first battle in the American Revolution.
“Pawtuxet Village is an important part of Rhode Island and New England history,” Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian said. “We greatly appreciate RIDOT’s efforts in making these improvements.”
Cranston Mayor Allan Fung said, “It demonstrates the importance of local cooperation in working with state agencies such as RIDOT to make improvements, both large and small, to our communities.”
RIDOT has coordinated with Warwick and Cranston to maintain and improve the roads and bridges in the village.
In 2000, RIDOT invested $344,000 to create a more pedestrian-friendly village atmosphere. This was accomplished through the installation of traffic-calming measures, widened sidewalks and elevated crosswalks that made it easier to cross the street. Uniform street signs, period lighting and other amenities were also added to the village.
Warwick Ward 1 Councilman Steven Colantuono, Cranston Ward 1 Councilman Steve Stycos, State Senator Josh Miller and State Representative Joe McNamara also worked with RIDOT and the cities in getting the work done.