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State holds Kick-Off event for 6/10 Connector project

Gov. Raimondo at the 6/10 project kick-off event. Photo: RIDOT

RIDOT hosted a kick-off event for the 6/10 Connector project this morning. Press release from RIDOT:


Governor, Senators Reed and Whitehouse, and Providence Officials Join RIDOT to Kick Off Long-Awaited 6-10 Interchange Project

Governor Gina Raimondo today joined with U.S. Senator Jack Reed, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza and Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) Director Peter Alviti to officially begin work on the 6-10 Interchange.

The 6-10 Interchange rebuild languished for 30 years. Today’s ceremony launched the $410 million project using a design-build approach that will save money and complete the project more quickly than anticipated. During the years of indecision and inaction on this vital highway link, its network of bridges deteriorated to the point where seven of nine bridges were classified as structurally deficient. Temporary supports were installed and millions of dollars spent in a series of repair projects necessary to keep the highway safe and open.

The project commencement ceremony was held at 1 Magnolia Street in Providence directly under the 6-10 Interchange. Other attendees included state senators and representatives, city council members, Federal Highway Administration officials, members of community groups, union representatives, and representatives of 6/10 Constructors, the design-build team composed of companies with deep Rhode Island and New England roots that will deliver the new 6-10 Interchange.

The contract to rebuild the 6-10 Interchange was awarded to joint venture group 6/10 Constructors based on the high score of their technical and financial proposals. The joint venture team led by Barletta Heavy Division, Inc. includes contractors O&G Industries, Inc., D.W. White Construction, Inc. and Aetna Bridge Company. The design team in the joint venture is led by AECOM with key design sub-consultants consisting of VHB, Commonwealth Engineers & Consultants, Inc., Crossman Engineering and McMahon Associates. The joint venture’s proposed cost for the design-build contract is $248 million.

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PBN: RIDOT awards $248M 6-10 Interchange rebuild contract to 6/10 Constructors

Video animation from RIDOT

The group had the lowest construction cost bid for the project at $248 million and the highest scoring technical proposal of any bid.

The 6/10 Constructor bid team includes New England companies, Barletta Heavy Division Inc., O&G Industries Inc., D.W. White Construction Inc. and Aetna Bridge Co.

The proposal was a design-build contract, which RIDOT says reduces the risk of cost overruns by creating a team that consists of both designer and contractor. The multi-faceted team is expected to decrease change orders and design errors.

[…]

RIDOT said that 20 percent of the project design has been completed already. The department expects the design to be ready in one year, with an expected construction completion in the fall of 2023.

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6/10 Final Plan Released

Rendering of proposed Westminster Street crossing

Some commentary on the final plans released by the State for the 6/10 Connector rebuild.

Download RIDOT’s Presentation on the 6/10 Connector

RI Future: 6-10 Connector plan is way better than it could have been, by Alex Krogh Grabbe Ellis

I’ve been talking up a progressive, urban solution for the 6-10 Connector almost as long as James Kennedy has. So I was excited and cautious and skeptical yesterday at the press event revealing the compromise plan for the corridor negotiated between RIDOT and the City of Providence. There were words from Governor Raimondo, Mayor Elorza, Providence Planning & Development Director Bonnie Nickerson, and RIDOT Director Peter Alviti.

As it turns out, I left the room more optimistic than I went in. If everything in the plan gets built as laid out yesterday, I will be pretty pleased. Here are some pros and cons as I see them:

Visit RI Future to read Alex’s full list if Pros, Cons, and Conclusions on the plan.


Transport Providence: Demand a Mile to Get an Inch

The governor used autocratic power to block the fully realistic aspirations of the city, not just to the city’s detriment, but to the state’s. She has failed to be a leader on climate change or racial justice, the two major struggles of our time. The Cheonngyecheon highway-removal in Seould was a success despite carrying 60% more vehicles than 6/10. Any statement on this agreement must acknowledge the ways that Gov. Raimondo has failed future generations of Rhode Islanders by being so obstructive.

I would have liked the mayor to fight a bit harder and more publicly, but that is a sin of omission. His administration, and especially his planning department, deserve more credit for working as hard as they did. I hope the mayor will consider state office someday.


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WPRI: 6/10 inspection reports reveal close-ups of potentially dangerous dilapidation

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Huntington Bridge photo from RIDOT’s Facebook page

Among the new issues revealed, a horribly rusted temporary support beam.

“This was decaying to the point of possibly falling over onto the high speed rail that’s next to it,” [RIDOT Director Peter] Alviti explained.

OK, should I not ride the train through this area then?

Alviti, who admitted the condition of the various structures keep him awake at night, said the fact that the reports are available is one of RIDOT’s most important, recent changes.

If the Director literally cannot sleep at night about it, shouldn’t the roadway be closed? What exactly is keeping him from sleeping if not the fear of an imminent collapse?

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6/10 Connector Public Workshop – August 30, 2016

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From the City of Providence Department of Planning and Development:


My vision for the 6-10 Connector is…

Please join us on Tuesday, August 30th for a Public Workshop to discuss your ideas for the 6-10 Connector.

The City of Providence is launching a public process to bring community members and decision-makers together to craft a design proposal for the 6-10 Connector, a portion of state highway that runs through numerous Providence neighborhoods including Olneyville, West End, Federal Hill, Silver Lake, Hartford, Valley, and Smith Hill.

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ProJo: Feds reject $175-million grant for 6-10 interchange project – City Workshop Scheduled on July 19, 2016

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Plans to rebuild Routes 6 and 10 were dealt a setback Friday as Rhode Island’s bid for a $175-million federal grant for the project was passed over, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation said.

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“While we are disappointed that we did not receive the FASTLANE grant funding for the Route 6-10 Interchange project, we remain committed to moving this long-delayed project forward,” said DOT Director Peter Alviti Jr. in the release. “RIDOT will move quickly to evaluate our options to tackle this problem and present a recommendation for next steps.”

[…]

The state and its consultants are refining a design for the 6/10 project, which is estimated to cost $959 million, in anticipation of seeking federal environmental approval for construction.


ONE BILLION DOLLARS is just a kookoo bananas amount of money for a highway interchange.

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Strong Towns: From Highway to Boulevard

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6/10 Connector from the Atwells Avenue overpass

Currently a six lane highway running like a loop off of I-95, the 6/10 Connector goes from Capitol Center through Smith Hill, Federal Hill, Valley, Olneyville, Manton, the West End, Silver Lake, the Upper South Side and Lower South Side, ending back at I-95 in the suburb of Cranston. These are working class and middle class neighborhoods with walkable bones, and the highway goes against its name and disconnects them from one another, ensuring more driving. Many businesses in the poorer neighborhoods of Providence rank high on the per-acre value scale that Joe Minicozzi’s Urban Three developed, but the design flaws imposed on the neighborhoods by decades of RIDOT mistakes do not allow those advantages to show.

[…]

The mayor’s administration recently added a 6/10 Boulevard proposal to the “TIP” or Transportation Improvement Plan, for the state. This marks a new milestone in a journey from the boulevard being a wild pipe dream to a proposal that seems likely to happen. Ominously, another version of the project—a complete rebuild of the highway—still is on the TIP. Advocates from Moving Together Providence are working to make sure the boulevard is built and that it does not become a stroad.

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