Providence

RIPR file photo

Downtown Providence will be busy this weekend with a major music festival, RISD commencement and the Southern New England Heart Walk. Most of the streets in central downtown will be closed to cars and bus routes will change to accommodate all the activity.

Street closures begin with a few smaller roads on Friday, and by Saturday, most of central downtown will turn pedestrian. That includes several major arteries in and around Kennedy Plaza, the state's largest public transit hub.

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority plans to re-locate all bus stops.

Mayor Elorza Announces 2016 PVD Fest Lineup

May 16, 2016
John Bender / RIPR

Mayor Jorge Elorza announced the lineup for this year’s PVD Fest, renamed from last year’s Providence International Arts Festival, Monday.

RIPR File Photo

Providence is putting social and racial equity at the center of its planning for future climate threats. The city earned a $100,000 grant to help with that. 

Nate Mooney / RIPR

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza held the first in a series of community meetings Monday to discuss the city’s fiscal challenges. Elorza is trying to build public support for a plan to dig the city out of deficits, projected to grow to tens of millions of dollars if left unchecked. 

Congressman David Cicilline joins Bonus Q&A to talk about the economic concerns raised by the presidential race; the fiscal outlook in Providence; the nuclear agreement with Iran and much more.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

More than 150 civic, business and political leaders gathered in the majestic grand banking hall of the vacant Superman Building Thursday to endorse the use of an as-yet-unspecified public subsidy to revitalize the iconic structure in downtown Providence.

Boosters said remaking the Jazz Age-era building with a mix of uses emphasizing residential would create more than 1,000 jobs, help fill the demand for more downtown housing, and offer other economic benefits.

Josiah Mackenzie/Creative Commons

Street closures are planned in Providence Sunday to make way for the 9th annual Providence marathon. The race starts at 7 a.m. and lasts until roughly 2 p.m.

Despite an early mix-up over race registration, some 3,000 runners are signed up to take part, several hundred more than organizers were expecting. 

Earlier this year, hundreds of runners signed up for the Providence marathon under a company that no longer organizes the race. After legal action, the current organizer was able to honor all registrations.

Folger Shakespeare Library

Time is almost up to see William Shakespeare’s First Folio on display at Brown University this month. As Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender reports, the 17th Century book thought to have save some of Shakespeare’s most beloved plays leaves Providence after the weekend.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza used his annual budget address Wednesday to call for more sacrifices that he calls necessary to prevent Rhode Island's capital city from sinking into a worsening financial cycle.

The most immediate hit will come for Providence residents since Elorza proposes a $13 million hike in the city's tax levy.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The state Department of Transportation held the last in a series of workshops Wednesday on the future of the 6/10 Connector. State DOT director Peter Alviti recently stopped by our studio to talk about the future of the Connector and related issues. Alviti spoke with Rhode Island Public Radio political reporter Ian Donnis and political analyst Scott MacKay.

(We should note that this conversation took place before a sometimes terse meeting on the 6/10 Connector earlier this week.)

John Bender / RIPR

Mayors and law enforcement leaders from Rhode Island and Massachusetts gathered in Providence Wednesday for a summit on reducing gun violence. Boston and Providence are taking part in a new effort to combat gun violence.

The new program brings several cities, including the two state capitals, together with non-profit Arms with Ethics, to pilot programs aimed at reducing gun violence.

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says working regionally cities, and towns will be better able to crack down on illegal gun trade. 

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

The Providence Public Schools have named a new superintendent. Chris Maher will lead the state capital’s school system, after serving as interim superintendent since last summer.

Maher took the helm following the abrupt departure of former city schools Superintendent Susan Lusi. The Providence School Board announced Monday it has voted unanimously to enter contract negotiations with Maher, to take on the position permanently.

Providence Community Library

The Providence Community Library system is facing a $100,000 deficit by this summer. The system operates nine neighborhood libraries across the capital. The organization is seeking $250,000 in additional funding from the city.

Advocates for the PCL are pushing city lawmakers to approve the increase with a letter-writing campaign and a rally scheduled for Thursday.

Providence College

After besting the University of Southern California, Providence College faces the top-seeded University of North Carolina on Saturday as March Madness continues.

In Providence, Yale faces it's own tough contest against Duke.

Both teams would make big headlines if they win Saturday, although analysts have said PC is unlikely to pull off a victory. Still, in the world of college basketball, RIPR sports blogger Mike Szostak says "it's a tournament that any of the top teams can win any team can win." 

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