July 22, 2024

East Providence awarded $250K RI Commerce Main Street grant

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East Providence, RI – The City of East Providence will see a facelift to parts of the Watchemoket and Warren Avenue Commercial Corridor after being awarded $250,000 through the Main Street Rhode Island Streetscape Improvement Fund Grant.

The funding will go towards sidewalk improvements to met ADA requirements, new crosswalks, street trees, benches, and trash receptacles on Warren Avenue from Watchemoket Square to Broadway.

Warren Avenue has become a popular destination for both local residents and out-of-town visitors with the help of the Comedy Connection several well-known restaurants and the nearby East Bay Bike Path.

“We are grateful to RI Commerce for granting us this award,” Mayor Bob DaSilva said. “This funding is an opportunity to beautify a portion of the city that we have placed a great deal of emphasis on in a highly walkable area near our flourishing waterfront.

“The history of Watchemoket runs deep in East Providence, housing thousands of middle- and working-class families in the late 1800s, DaSilva added. “We couldn’t be more excited to continue revitalizing a major piece of East Providence’s history, and bringing it back to its former glory.”

Currently, Warren Avenue contains a diverse mix of land uses that support commercial investment and numerous small businesses. This grant funding will help to prioritize this corridor of East Providence to attract more and varied commercial uses, particularly restaurant and arts and entertainment-related businesses.

The total project cost for the improvements project will be $300,000. The City will be using $50,000 of its $500,000 ARPA placemaking allocation toward the physical improvements identified in the grant.

“The City has placed a great deal of emphasis on physical improvements to the Watchemoket Square/Warren Avenue corridor in pursuit of promoting economic investment and the beautification of one of the City’s most important commercial corridors,” East Providence Planning and Economic Development Director Keith A. Brynes said. “This is a major step in the right direction.”

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