Kennedy Plaza

The plan for a new stadium for the Pawtucket Red Sox in Providence has hit a roadblock. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay parses how this field of dreams turned into a nightmare.

The first Providence International Arts Festival, held last weekend, was such a success that Mayor Jorge Elorza is moving ahead with plans for another such celebration next year, said mayoral spokesman David Ortiz.

Thousands thronged a downtown transformed into a giant music stage and pedestrian arts mall last Saturday and Sunday. ``It met our expectations and we’re looking to grow it in the future,’’ said Ortiz.

The weather cooperated both days as the sun washed over downtown. ``We did get lucky,’’ acknowledged Ortiz.

John Bender / RIPR

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority, has revealed its policy for security cameras at Kennedy Plaza.  Civil liberties advocates have raised questions about new cameras installed during a renovation of the downtown Providence transit hub.

The authority says's is part of an effort to increase security.  RIPTA says the cameras can only be accessed by the chief of security, and will be deleted after about a month.  

Traffic Changes Coming To Downtown Providence

Dec 22, 2014

Drivers in downtown Providence should take caution this week.  The city is two-way traffic on roads that used to be one-way. 


The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority expects Kennedy Plaza in Providence to be ready for regular bus service in mid-January.  

The bus hub has been closed since the summer to accommodate safety and design improvements.  RIPTA says the project is taking longer than expected because of some needed changes.  The Kennedy Plaza improvements will include passenger-friendly shelters, lighted signage, trees, and automated ticketing machines.  

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority is hosting a public meeting today to discuss the ongoing construction and proposed changes to the public bussing hub Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence.  There are some outspoken critics of the project.

The most vocal group, the RIPTA Riders Alliance says the project, which closes down some bus lanes, and relocates several bus stops is bad for passengers.   They say the changes will make it harder for riders, especially those who are older or handicapped, to make their buses safely and on time. 


Groups upset over changes to Kennedy Plaza rallied at City Hall in Providence Tuesday.

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority Riders alliance said proposed changes in bus services are the start of a push to move bus riders out of the central downtown location. Bus stops have moved out of Kennedy Plaza as construction continues, and not all of them will be reinstalled once the project is completed. 

Randall Rose is a spokesperson for the Riders Alliance group, and said moving the hub is a bad idea.

Kennedy Plaza Bus Stops Relocated For Summer

Jul 8, 2014

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority is relocating bus stops in Kennedy Plaza to nearby locations while the plaza is being renovated. With many buses traveling in and out, Kennedy Plaza is currently the hub of bus transportation in the city. 

The City of Providence plans to build a large civic space in the plaza and increase the efficiency of the bus stops and pedestrian walkways. The relocations will go into effect on Saturday, July 12th and will last until the work is completed in the fall.


So Buddy Cianci is back in the campaign for Providence mayor. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay reminds us that he isn’t the only candidate.

Every newsroom used to have a crusty city editor who berated young reporters. Mine was a revered Providence Journal editor named Al Johnson who barked, ``put them in the ambulance before you take them to the hospital’’ when he wanted a story about a car accident.


A bill that would use $39 million in taxpayers’ money to revitalize the vacant Superman Building is slated for a Senate Finance committee hearing this Tuesday.  Lawmakers have been lukewarm about using a public subsidy for the Providence skyscraper.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Colleagues are remembering the federal court security officer who died Thursday after a bus accident as a dedicated professional. Court officials say they’re using the accident to push for increased pedestrian safety in Kennedy Plaza.

US Marshal Jamie Hainsworth says Frank McKnight’s friends, co-workers and family are heartbroken after the unexpected loss of the 69-year-old.

“No words can adequately describe the loss and the sadness we feel and that we share with Frank’s family at home and with his extended family in law enforcement here at the court,” Hainsworth said.

Natalie Jablonski / RIPR

The plan to locate a state probation office on Fountain Street in downtown Providence is dead. But RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says the debate on where it ought to go may be just beginning.

After an outcry ignited by Angus Davis, one of Rhode Island’s top young high-tech entrepreneurs, Governor Lincoln Chafee’s administration has pulled back a proposal to move a state probation office from a gritty South Providence neighborhood to a downtown venue nestled among the Providence Journal Building, The Rhode Island Convention Center and the Providence Biltmore Hotel.

The SummerCAM/SnowCAM  is in the RIPR newsroom, looking out at downtown Providence.  It uses Wowza-based streaming technology, provided by, which should work on most devices. 

It’s been a half-century  years since the assassination of John F. Kennedy.  RIPR Political analyst Scott MacKay explores why Kennedy loved Rhode Island and why the Ocean State loved JFK.

Our state is America’s smallest yet  it loomed large in the life of John F. Kennedy.

From the time Kennedy was a young man, he and his family were shaped by experiences in Rhode Island.  If any event forged the career of John Kennedy it was his World War II heroics as a patrol torpedo lieutenant in the U.S. Navy.

RIPTA Making It Easier For PawSox Fans On Sundays

May 14, 2013

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority is trying something new to make it easier for PawSox fans to get to McCoy Stadium.   

For Sunday Home Games beginning May 19th, fans may be picked up at Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence for the games.  Regular one way fare is $2.00 and a total of $4.00 for a round trip.  Fans may also buy regular monthly passes for $62.00.  Twenty Minutes after the game, fans are able to catch a ride back to Kennedy plaza.  RIPTA and the PawSox plan to continue to promote the service to fans during each game.