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Archive | Election 2010

Inauguration Providence Neighborhood Celebrations & Thank You! (Jan. 7)

The Providence Mayoral Inauguration events wrap up tomorrow with Mayor Taveras visiting the schools he attended in Providence:

INAUGURAL NEIGHBORHOOD EVENTS
FRIDAY, JANUARY 7, 2011

The Inaugural Neighborhood Events are being held at the schools that Mayor Angel Taveras attended growing up as a child in the City of Providence. All events are free and open to residents and friends of the City of Providence. All events offer refreshments and are alcohol-free.

Friday, January 7, 2011
3 – 4 pm Mary Fogarty Elementary School
4 – 5 pm Roger Williams Middle School
5 – 6 pm Nathaniel Greene Middle School
6 – 7 pm Classical High School

Los eventos de inaugración en los vecindarios tendrán lugar en las escuelas en las cuales el Alcalde Angel Taveras asistió cuando estaba creciendo en la Ciudad de Providence. Todos los eventos son gratis y abiertos a los residentes y amigos de la Ciudad de Providence. Todos los eventos ofrecerán refrescos y serán libres de alcohol.

Viernes, 7 de enero, 2011
3 – 4 pm Escuela Primaria Mary Fogarty
4 – 5 pm Escuela Media Roger Williams
5 – 6 pm Escuela Media Nathaniel Greene
6 – 7 pm Escuela Secundaria Classical

For additional questions or information please e-mail inauguration@transitionprovidence.org or call 401.424.1841. Thank you for your continued support and participation as we work together to move Providence forward.

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Governor Chafee’s Inaugural Address

Gov. LIncoln Chafee

Photo from yesterday’s Mayoral Inauguration. By Jef Nickerson

Prepared text of Governor Chafee’s Inaugural Address:

Governor Lincoln Chafee
Inaugural Address
January 4, 2011

With deep humility, aware of the adversity we face but confident that, together, we will meet the challenge of our times, I am honored to stand before you as our state’s 58th Governor.

I ask you to join with me in thanking Governor Carcieri for his service to Rhode Island over the past eight years.

F. Scott Fitzgerald once said that there are no second acts in America. Fortunately, he was not a political sage. I believe a second chance begins at this very moment”¦. not just for me, but for our wonderful state of Rhode Island and for each and every one of her citizens. Today, I humbly ask each Rhode Islander to join me in embarking on a new era of opportunity for Rhode Island.

I pledge to devote every ounce of energy I have to this task. Indeed, I will not rest until we reclaim the promise that lay in the heart of our founder Roger Williams some 375 years ago.

This magnificent building behind me is replete with symbols of that promise, from the great charter of 1663 that gave a king’s blessing to our “lively experiment,” to the flags that Rhode Islanders carried into battle against another king, in defense of our basic rights.

We were the first colony to stand up to the crown by signing the Declaration of Independence. And we were the last to ratify the Constitution as we prudently waited to be persuaded that America’s standard of freedom was as high as our own.

Continue Reading →

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What Cheer/What Jeer 2010

What Cheer/What Jeer was originally supposed to be a monthly, or a quarterly thing, but you know what, it is a lot of work putting a list like this together, so it has become an annual thing. So join us as we take a look back at 2010, What Cheering the good and What Jeering the bad.

whatcheerProvidence River Pedestrian Bridge

Whether you love it or hate it, Providence will soon be getting a new pedestrian bridge over the Providence River. Design firms large and small from around the world entered the competition that led to the winning design. And the competition got people around the city interested in transportation and design.

providence-river-pedestrian-bridge

whatcheerRIPTA

Last year we declared that 2010 would be “The Year of RIPTA” and not to be too smug about it but, we were kinda right.

In December 2009 RIPTA and the City of Providence released the Metro Transit Study, which drew a lot of attention to its proposal to run a streetcar line through Providence. This year, RIPTA embarked on their Core Connector Study, the first step toward bringing streetcars back to Providence. In June, U.S. Sec. of Transportation Ray LaHood visited Providence and was very excited about our future plans. RIPTA also took delivery of a new fleet of hybrid buses and trolleys in October. This year also saw RIPTA unveil a 5-year plan for the future of transit in Rhode Island. Finally, RIPTA hired a new CEO, Charles Odimgbe. It is early days yet in Mr. Odimgbe’s tenure, so it remains to be seen if he’ll be What Cheered or What Jeered next year.

Certainly all was not good for RIPTA this year, 2010 saw the continuation of an annual tradition wherein RIPTA’s budget falls short resulting in the agency looking to cut routes and/or increase fares. This year they went with increasing fares yet again. Here’s hoping the incoming Governor and General Assembly can work to address the issues surrounding RIPTA’s budget.

whatcheerElection 2010

What an exciting year that was. New Mayor, new Governor, new Congressman from Providence (even if he is a freshman and in the minority party, that’s good for us!), many new City Councilors, Shoveitgate, The Uncaucas, Chris Young… Let’s do that again real soon (well, not too soon).

whatcheerThe Interlink & MBTA to Warwick

October saw the opening of the long awaited Interlink. The skybridge connects T.F. Green Airport to a parking garage, rental car facilities, and a train station via a skybridge with moving sidewalks over Post Road. The Interlink opening was followed in December by the extension of MBTA Commuter Rail service from Providence to the station at the Interlink facility. Next year that service will be expanded and will go further south to a new station currently under construction at Wickford Junction.

Interlink

whatcheerThe Box Office

The Box Office was completed this year. The building, made out of shipping containers brought national attention to Providence within the construction and design communities for its innovative design. Developers from near and far want to replicate the building in their communities.

whatcheerThe Arts

We What Cheered the arts last year, and we’re What Cheering them again this year. Woonsocket’s Riverzedge and Providence’s Community Music Works each took home one of fifteen 2010 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards (after Providence’s New Urban Arts won the same award last year (go Rhody!)). AS220 celebrated their 25th Anniversary this year, commissioned RISD alum Shepard Fairy to create a mural on Aborn Street, and is wrapping up renovation on its third Downcity Building, The Mercantile Block. And basically, art in Providence just continued to be pretty damn awesome. Buy Art!

Last year, we weren’t really in the mood to What Jeer, we had jeered enough I guess. But this year, oh, here go hell come, are you ready? Let’s do it.

whatjeerRIDOT

RIDOT, seriously, you’re killing us here. While we’ve said it time and again, we really like what Director Michael Lewis has to say about not being able to build more highways to end congestion and needing to be multi-modal and what not… the Director’s words have not been matching the agency’s actions.

From the craptacular original design of the Wickenden Street intersection related to the 195 Relocation, to the ridiculous placement of signs on the sidewalk on the Friendship Street bridge, to the utter disregard for any mode other than automobiles in the planning of the new Union Avenue Bridge, and more, RIDOT has proven that they have a long way to go in understanding how to build infrastructure in an urban environment and serve a multi-modal population.

Governor-elect Chafee has decided to keep Director Lewis on at RIDOT, a decision we agree with. Let’s hope that the Director can make the agency’s actions match his own and the Governor’s visions for how our transportation system should look. We’re hoping next year we might be able to What Cheer RIDOT.

whatjeerThe Arcade/35 Weybosset

Though these are separate properties, they are linked in the public consciousness and the destiny of each may best be served by thinking of them together. The What Jeer here is pretty obvious, the Arcade still sits empty and the facade at 35 Weybosset Street remains neglected.

The neglect of the 35 Weybosset facade is the clearest example available of a developer attempting a demolition by neglect, and he is beginning to get a lot of support for that option, though we clearly think there is a better way.

As for the Arcade, we might have to agree with one of our commenters that the best course of action is eminent domain.

whatjeerGrove Street School

Seeing as the Grove Street School’s current owner, Michael Tarro won election to the General Assembly, the school’s future seems more tenuous than ever.

Grove Street School

The good news is, the new City Councilor for Ward 13, Bryan Principe is an ardent supporter of the building. Let’s hope Bryan and the new Mayor can work on an arrangement with Mr. Tarro on the building’s future.

whatjeerCVS

While in the end, CVS agreed to some minor concessions on their initial proposal for a CVS in Edgewood, they’re still basically dropping a box from the sky into the middle of a parking lot. We still don’t know why CVS hates Rhode Island.

whatjeerUnion Wadding Mill Fire

Did they ever catch the bastard who did this? There’s a $10,000 reward you know.

Photo from Pawtucket Foundation Facebook Page

whatjeerParkinglotification

Last year we What Cheered the Smith-Mathewson Building proposed for where the Downcity Diner used to be. This year it is a parking lot. Sigh.

whatjeerAtwells Avenue

As if enduring 14 months of construction at the intersection with Dean Street wasn’t bad enough, at the other end of the Avenue we had a girl who works at a Salon and a City Councilor run down by errant drivers within weeks of each other. We all know which one got the most attention from the media, including us.

After years of people getting hit on Atwells, to the point where those of us who live up there see it as part of life, the hit and run of Councilman Hassett did serve to jolt us all out of our malaise on the topic. After years of inaction we now have some repainted crosswalks, more signs, and a speed bump at the western end of the Avenue (where most of the pedestrians have been struck). Much more needs to be done to improve the safety situation not just on Atwells, but on roads throughout the city.

Let us not fall back into our malaise where we accept people being struck by cars as an inevitable part of city life, it is not. Let us make sure that we follow through on the outrage that followed the Councilman’s injuries and act to do all we can to ensure that it does not happen again.


We could probably go on, but let’s wrap up the What Cheering and What Jeering there. Feel free to add you own in the comments.

Thank you to everyone who reads and contributes to Greater City: Providence. It was a great year discussing the city we all love.

Happy New Year!

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Inauguration of the 37th Mayor of Providence, January 3

Mayor-elect Taveras and supporters celebrating on election night

Mayor-elect Angel Taveras’ inauguration is Monday, January 3, 2011. All inauguration events are free and open to the public.

All the details you need to know are on the Transition Providence website.

Importantly, though the events are free, you do need to register for the evening Inaugural Celebration at the Rhode Island Convention Center. Visit the Inauguration page and fill out the form. The form must be filled out for each person attending. For people without internet access, one can either submit a reservation for them (in their name), or they can pick-up tickets in person at the Rhode Island Convention Center December 28, 29, or 30 between 4pm and 6pm. Registrations need to be submitted by Dec. 28th.

This event is expected to reach capacity quickly, so register now if you want to attend. The event will be business casual and will feature desserts, live music, a cash bar, and a “special guest.”

The inauguration of Mayor Angel Taveras, the 37th Mayor of the City of Providence, will take place on Monday, January 3, 2011.

Schedule of Events:

  • 1:30 PM
    Swearing-In Ceremony (free and open to the public)
    Steps of City Hall, 25 Dorrance Street
  • 3:00 PM
    Reception (free and open to the public)
    City Hall, 25 Dorrance Street
  • 7:00 PM
    Inaugural Celebration (free, requires admission ticket – register below)
    Rhode Island Convention Center
    One Sabin Street, Providence

Inaugural Neighborhood Events – Friday, January 7, 2011

  • 3-4pm Mary Fogarty Elementary School
  • 4-5pm Roger Williams Middle School
  • 5-6pm Nathanael Green Middle School
  • 6-7pm Classical High School

See my disclosure regarding serving on the Mayor-elect’s Transition Committee. I was also invited to be a Inauguration Ambassador, which basically means they want me to tell people about the Inauguration, which I just did.

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Full disclosure regarding Transition Providence

Today the Transition Team for Mayor-Elect Taveras issued a press release announcing seven committees devoted to determining how to put Mr. Taveras’ campaign promises into action.

If you read the release closely, you’d have noticed that my name is on it. A couple weeks ago I was asked to be on the City Services Committee and accepted. So in the interest of full disclosure, I’m letting you, Greater City: Providence’s readers know.

I can assure you that I will continue to be as critical and snarky as ever when a critical eye and/or snark is warranted. It is an honor to be asked to provide input for the next administration though.

The City Services Committee will be meeting at least two more times (and we have split ourselves into subcommittees which are meeting more frequently), then we need to prepare a report for the Mayor-Elect by December 21st.

Head over to Nesi’s Notes on WPRI.com for a full list of all the committees and committee members.

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Transition Providence

Mayor-Elect Taveras has a new website up, TransitionProvidence.org. It is early days so it is pretty light on content at the moment, but he is already seeking your feedback.

We’re looking forward to seeing more content on the site soon. In the meantime, feel free to discuss here what you want to see the new mayor get to work on.

Update

Mayor-Elect Taveras also has a new Twitter for all you Twitterati to follow:


Follow @Angel_Taveras for transition updates and more.less than a minute ago via web

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Happy Election Day!

Election 2010

This is it, the day we’ve all been waiting for, the first day of the 2012 campaign season. Ugh.

Before we get into that, let’s wrap up the 2010 campaign season by getting out and voting.

Head over to the Secretary of State’s website to get your sample ballot and find your polling place. Then get out there and vote, and tell your friends to vote, and give your grandma a ride to the polls to vote, then vote again.

Polls are open statewide until 9pm.

On Primary night, Ted Nesi had excellent coverage on his blog on WPRI.com. I fully expect more excellent coverage tonight and highly recommend navigating there as the polls close. Ted will also likely have a Twitter storm of election coverage as well, if that’s your preferred media consumption medium, check him out here

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Happy Primary Election Day!

Primary election day is finally here. Polls in Providence are open 7am to 9pm. Some communities the polls open later than 7am, all polls statewide are open until 9pm, if you are in line by 9pm, you will be allowed to vote.

ProJo has a rundown of voter Primary information here.

The Secretary of State’s Office has all the info you need, polling places, poll hours, sample ballots, etc., here.


And if you haven’t decided yet, you can read our Mayoral Candidate Surveys:
Angel Taveras
John Lombardi


Feel free to let us know in the comments area, your election day experiences. If you take some interesting primary day photos, please share them in our Flickr Group. And if you haven’t already, get to the polls and vote.

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