RI shutters its I-95 welcome center

PROVIDENCE, RI – Rhode Island's only welcome center is now closed. The facility just off Interstate 95 between Exit 2 and Exit 3 closed Thursday.

Charles St. Martin with the Rhode Island Department of Transportation says GPS devices, smart phones and development around those exits played a big role in the decision.

"There are similar resources available to the motorists either they have their own travel information," says St. Martin. "Or the idea of having a rest area to get off the road, Exit 3, which is very close to this, has many restaurants, convenient stores and gas stations."

The move is expected to save $400,000 a year. St. Martin says the money will be diverted to road and bridge construction.

The I-95 welcome center opened in 1989. Its closure leaves three full-time and three part-time employees without jobs.

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