Greater City Providence

Little Roady Pilot Project Informational Meeting – April 1, 2019

[alert type=”muted”]Monday, April 1, 2019 – 5:30-7:30pm
WaterFire Arts Center
475 Valley Street, Providence, RI
More Information: Little Roady Autonomous Shuttle Pilot Project[/alert]

The Little Roady Pilot Project will bring the first self-driving shuttles to Rhode Island. The service, launching in Spring 2019, is composed of a fleet of fully electric vehicles operating on low-speed roadways along the Woonasquatucket River Corridor, which currently lacks transit service.

Service Highlights
  • Free rides to the public 7 days a week
  • 12 stops, from Olneyville Square to Providence Station
  • 3 and 6 vehicles running at a time
  • Carries 5 passengers
  • Staffed with safety operator trained how to operate the vehicle manually if needed

Service Map

Greater City Providence

Promoting the smart urban growth of the Greater Providence region.


  • “Little Roady”…how stupid, condensending, and embarrassing.

    Darn it, call it something that touts Providence’s great assets that is transportation related!!

  • Event touting ‘self-driving’ vehicles being held on April Fool’s Day. Absolutely perfect.

  • What a colossal waste of money and resources. Transit between Olneyville Square and Providence Station can be achieved by simply putting in an Olneyville train station. There could be a mid-way flag stop at Federal Hill.

    It would ALLEVIATE traffic, versus ADD to traffic. It would be cheaper to operate since the line already exists. It would add to property values versus do nothing for property values.

    I guess now we have our own idiotic transit solution, just like Boston’s Silver Line!

  • Joel – “cute” is not what Providence needs. It is not being sensitive, it’s being sensible. This is not Disneyland, it’s a major city.

    KCB – Until they hire someone from a major city with mass transit systems as director, instead of a homegrown suburban mayor, the minor league approach will prevail.

  • Yes, of course. My error. In fact, I think the RIDOT Director is doing an excellent job.

    The thing that gets me is this silly R.I. mentality that somehow sees “ Little” as a benefit in promoting or identifying itself or even worse – Providence.

    So many other PVD related names could have been selected:

    You get the point…

  • Steve – Regarding “this silly R.I. mentality…” The first thing people learn about Rhode Island is that it is the smallest state in the U.S.. Rather than pretend that it’s not true, why not capitalize on the fact that we’re the best at something (being small) and everybody knows it?

    And you’re going to have a hard time convincing people that Providence is a “major city” when Cape Coral FL, Brownsville TX, and McKinney TX all have bigger populations than Providence. I had never even heard of two of those cities before today! Turns out two of them are suburbs of major cities…

    I’ve noticed a lot of commenters on this site are fond of comparing Providence to Boston (~4x our population, ~5x our GDP), so I’ll use a Boston sports analogy to argue my point. Isaiah Thomas has had a surprising amount of success in the NBA, despite the fact that he is only 5′-9″. Regardless of how good he was/is/will be, people will ALWAYS mention that he’s short. Can you imagine how fans would respond if he was constantly arguing, “I’m not short!” and trying to play power forward? He’d get laughed out the gym. Instead, he uses his small stature to his advantage and gets talked about not because he has any hope of being a top 10 NBA player but because he’s surprisingly good for a short person. That is my vision for Providence/RI – surprisingly good for a short person.

  • Well, Joel, he facts are that:
    1) Rhode Island is only the smallest state in the U.S. in land area. This is not an any way an important feature nor an achievement. RI is bigger that 7 other states in what matters – population.

    More importantly, Providence is more notable than the state for its many attributes – that I will not list here.

    2) Rhode Island is irrelevant – this project is a intra-city transportation for Providence, not the state. So its focus and promotion should be on the city it serves.

    3) The cities you mention are not major cities. As you correctly cited, very few people know they exist and they are not national destinations. state capitals, economic or educational centers, or otherwise notable. So, they cannot be in any way compared to Providence. I travel to over 70 cites and when I say where I am from, Providence is almost always recognized immediately (higher education, state capital, Patriots, history, architecture, manufacturing, a major port, and of course, as a culinary mecca (Federal Hill in particular).

    4) Boston does not have 4X the population of Providence. 200 verses 580 is 3X. It does not have a 5X our GDP…it is 4X. Additionally, Providence has more manufacturing than Boston and is New England’s second largest metro. I could cite many more facts that places it in what I consider the major city category.

    But my points remain the same:
    1) This project has nothing to do with the state, as it serves the city
    2) Providence has far more positive attributes that can be used for a “logo” that that obsolete RI “motto”

Providence, RI
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