Activists slam state’s ‘deplorable’ plan to move buses out of Kennedy Plaza

Toting megaphones, waving posters and belting out chants of opposition, activists angered over the state’s plan to break up downtown Providence’s Kennedy Plaza bus hub made their message clear Saturday: The blueprint is bad.

At a rally in Burnside Park, the Rhode Island Transit Riders Alliance joined local organizations including the Providence Streets Coalition, Grow Smart RI, the Kennedy Plaza Coalition and South Providence Neighborhood Association to call out the state’s Department of Transportation for a plan critics say will hurt communities of color and has lacked public input.

“How is it that you’re not allowing public engagement with public money?” asked SPNA Chair Dwayne Keys. “That’s a problem.”

Patricia Raub, coordinator of RI Transit Riders, talks to protesters who walked from Burnside Park to proposed bus hubs Saturday to protest the planned breakup of the public transit system at Kennedy Plaza.

More:Plan to break up Kennedy Plaza bus hub faces discrimination complaint

More:In face of rider complaints, Kennedy Plaza bus plan still work in progress

More:What’s the future of Kennedy Plaza? RIPTA’s riders and the state don’t agree


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Plan made to refloat ship blocking Suez Canal using tide

SUEZ, Egypt (AP) — The company that owns the giant container ship stuck sideways across the Suez Canal said an attempt will be made to refloat the vessel by taking advantage of tidal movements later Saturday.

The Ever Given, owned by Japanese firm Shoei Kisen KK, got wedged Tuesday in a single-lane stretch of the canal, about 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) north of the southern entrance, near the city of Suez.

At a news conference Friday night at company headquarters in Imabari, western Japan, Shoei Kisen President Yukito Higaki said 10 tugboats were deployed and workers were dredging the banks and sea floor near the vessel’s bow to try to get it afloat again as the high tide starts to go out.

“We apologize for blocking the traffic and causing the tremendous trouble and worry to many people, including the involved parties,” he said.

Shoei Kisen said in a statement

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New plan for Kennedy Plaza: Fewer buses, more people

In the latest reimagining of Providence’s central square, you get from Kennedy Plaza to Waterplace Park by bridge instead of tunnel.

You ice skate on a “riverine,” s-shaped water feature in the plaza instead of the current BankNewport City Center rink.

And when WaterFire returns, you’ll gaze up at a giant ring suspended over the basin that sprays mist down upon spectators.

All of these things are part of a $140-million plan unveiled by Mayor Jorge Elorza and city planners Wednesday that takes another stab at making Kennedy Plaza and the downtown riverwalk more attractive and welcoming.

“We know that the Kennedy Plaza space has been the center of our city geographically, but it has never fully been the center of our city culturally,” Elorza told reporters at a Wednesday briefing. “In our mind’s eye, we have never had that city center in Providence that the other cities that we

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