RIDOT announced today commuter rail service to the new Wickford Junction Station in North Kingstown will start on April 23rd. The station will be served by 20 trips per weekday to T.F. Green, Providence, and points north. Travel times being 15 minutes to Warwick, 35 minutes to Providence, and under two hours to Boston’s South Station.
“Expanded commuter rail service to Wickford is just over two weeks away,” said RIDOT Director Michael P. Lewis. “This additional service has been highly anticipated and should help alleviate congestion on our roadways.”
Fares are as follows, but only good until June 1st when MBTA fare increases are set to start:
Ticket fare for travel between Wickford Junction and T.F. Green, an Interzone 2 zone fare, will cost $2.25 each way ($3 starting July 1, 2012). The cost of travel between Wickford Junction and Providence, an Interzone 3 fare, will cost $2.50 each way ($3.25 starting July 1, 2012). Travel between Wickford Junction and Boston’s South Station, a Zone 10 fare, will cost $9 each way ($11 starting July 1, 2012). Tickets are half price for seniors as well as those with physical disabilities. Children age 11 and younger are free when accompanied by a paying adult.
Monthly passes for unlimited travel between Wickford Junction and Providence will cost $89 ($109 starting July 1, 2012). Monthly passes for unlimited travel between Wickford Junction and South Station will cost $308 ($345 starting July 1, 2012). This pass also includes travel on all MBTA buses and subways as well as the Inner Harbor Ferry.
The $25million station includes a parking garage for 1,100 cars with 10 electric vehicle charging stations, an indoor waiting area, restrooms, and a coffee shop. RIPTA bus service is expected to serve the station.
Schedule information is as follows with more information to be availble on the MBTA’s website:
Trains leaving Wickford Junction that are headed inbound to Warwick T.F. Green, Providence and South Station depart at the following times: 4:50 a.m., 5:58 a.m., 6:37 a.m., 7:45 a.m., 9:10 a.m., 1:10 p.m., 3:40 p.m., and 10:10 p.m.
Trains leaving Wickford Junction that are headed inbound to Providence only depart at 6:55 p.m. and 7:50 p.m. A change of trains to South Station can be made at the following times: 7:28 p.m. and 8:22 p.m.
Trains arriving at Wickford Junction outbound from Warwick T.F. Green, Providence and South Station come into the station at 8:54 a.m., 12:59 p.m., 3:26 p.m., 5:41 p.m., 6:42 p.m., 7:18 p.m., and 9:55 p.m.
Trains arriving Wickford Junction outbound from Warwick T.F. Green and Providence come into Wickford Junction at 5:43 a.m., 6:17 a.m., and 7:32 a.m.
What would be super cool is if there would be enough traffic to justify splitting the stoughton/providence lines into a stoughton, attleboro and Rhode Island line. Where the Rhode Island line would stop at North Kingstown, Wickford, TF Green, Providence then straight to Ruggles, Backbay and South Station. Would be nice to get the commute to Boston to average about an hour again so all of use coming from Rhode Island can see our kids during the week again.
With no w/e service there is no chance that the system can be used for Red Sox, MFA, etc. As for splitting the line, we are lucky we got this given the MBTA deficit. And just what will the parking fee be?
Will there be direct ripta service to and from Newport?
Currently, the only buses which pass close to the station are the 66 Express (Narragansett) and the 14 Express (Newport). I suppose it would make sense for those buses to serve the station when trains are arriving, but without weekend service, it kind of ruins the day trip to Newport option. I don’t know how many Aquidneck Islanders work in Providence or points north that would be interested in that kind of service.
It would be good to have some express service from Providence or South Attelboro (South Attelboro is really a RI station, most commuters there are RIers) to Boston, but there is a degree of reverse commuting from points in between into Providence, so cutting all those stations off would not be good.
If we were really serious about this station, there would already be plans for massive residential development on site. We should be building 1,100 condos in addition to 1,100 parking spaces. Instead we have a Walmart and a Staples.
If you want to pick up a little something on your way home you drive from the station garage over to Walmart. The site is that vast and unwalkable. If they build 1000 condos, you could have a nice short drive from your condo to the station or to Walmart.
I’ve heard parking there will be $4.
You can access Newport now via the commuter rail to TF Green and then using the skywalk over to the terminal and taking the 14 from their.
If you look on RIPTA’s website at the 66 schedule, they are extending 2 roundtrips each weekday to connect to the commuter rail at Wickford. This will now also offer URI folks to get to/from TF Green via RIPTA and then the MBTA. I hope they decide to extend a couple more of the 66 buses at the times the train runs to improve the URI to TF Green and Boston options.
I think for commuter rail to succeed there also has to be better conditions at the Providence train station and combined fares with RIPTA to get folks from that station to various points around downtown Providence that are a bit far to walk (e.g. court district, near PPL…) It would also help, since the State House is nearby, if the state, which at great expense provides free parking to all employees, would level the playing field a bit by offering transit incentives as an alternative.
RIDOT is working hard for a grand opening, but they don’t have a marketing dept to really promote the service, its not a RIPTA project, the MBTA is from another state, Amtrak trains are not involved, so its partly up to advocates to help promote this service. If it doesn’t succeed, it will be a hard sell for any further rail improvements in RI.
Barry, You’re absolutely right. This is a big problem. It’s all connected – RIDOT, RIPTA, MBTA, Amtrak, the Core Connector, the 195 land, job creation, and real estate development. The Core Connector and RIPTA’s bus system are the key links to make all of it work. Jef we need to have another advocacy meeting. Could you suggest some times?
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