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." 

John Bender / RIPR

March Madness has hit Rhode Island. Providence hosts six games in the first and second round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball championship this week.

Eight teams square off at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. Two double-headers will be held on Thursday. The winning teams will move on to a double-header on Saturday.

John Bender / RIPR

As part of our occasional series, Rising Tide, we’re offering snapshots of Rhode Island’s economy after the Great Recession. The state famous for coffee milk syrup, is now home to a burgeoning specialty coffee scene.


Rhode Island Transit officials announced the creation of a new bus corridor through downtown Providence. The 1.4 mile transit project replaces the now-scrapped city streetcar project. 

Dead Animals: Taxidermy in Art

Mar 10, 2016
Chuck Hinman

Have you given any thought lately to your relationship with animals? Statistics reveal a contradictory interaction between humans and other species.

Here in the United States, the American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals estimates that there could be as many as 176 million dogs and cats being kept as pets, many of them no doubt treated as beloved members of the family. On the other hand, figures from the Humane Society show billions of cattle, chickens and other livestock slaughtered every year for food.


Residents in the city of Providence can now use a mobile app to get in touch with city staff for problems in the city. Providence residents can call 3-1-1 or, use the new mobile app to connect with the Mayor’s center for city services.

City spokesperson Evan England says citizens can use the app to lodge a complaint, request a service, or make an inquiry.

  “Whether that’s plowing, trash collection, inquiries about pickup dates, parking, we encourage residents to try 3-1-1 first,” said England.

Historic Providence Elms Struck Down By Fungal Disease

Mar 9, 2016
Richard Cooper

Four towering elm trees had to be cut down in Providence last week, after being struck with Dutch elm disease. The trees were more than 100-years-old.

They stood on the property of the historic John Brown House since the early 1900s.

The Rhode Island Historical Society owns the property and plans to replace the European Elms with mixture of different elm species.

It’s been about a year since the last time the historical society was forced to cut down trees because of the Dutch elm fungus.