One-way traffic pattern instituted at Roger Williams Park
Much of the traffic at Roger Williams Park is now one way as part of Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza's plan to make room for bicyclists and pedestrians.
"I feel much safer. The park is for people. It’s not a cut through," Stephen Martin, a bicyclist from Cranston, said.
The new traffic pattern went into effect Friday morning. It was delayed by one day due to bad weather.
NBC 10 News spoke with several people who are frustrated about the design and say the new one-way route along Pine Hill Avenue to Park Avenue, to the Montgomery Avenue Rotary, was poorly designed.
"A small minority is controlling the big majority of people who want to use it as a cut through, but like I said, Providence doesn’t care what Cranston thinks," said Cranston resident Ken Mournighan.
Providence City Councilors Carmen Castillo, Sabino Matos and Luis Aponte introduced a resolution Thursday, calling on Elorza’s administration to stop working on the project until traffic impact studies are done in both Providence and Cranston. The resolution has been referred to the committee on public works.
Those who live on the outskirts of the park admit people use it to cut through traffic. They’re now concerned that the one-way route will bring more drivers to the side roads.
"Park Avenue in the mornings and during 5 o’clock rush hour -- it’s a mess, so our whole neighborhood just comes this way to get here," said Steven Trabucco, who also lives in Cranston.
But runners, like Mark Bracken, are thankful the park now has two designated bike lanes and one designated lane for runners and walkers.
"I had a person hit me in the back with a bike and believe me it’s no fun," Bracken said.