URI to hold public meeting on bike path spur project Oct. 25

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KINGSTON, R.I. — October 23, 2017 — The University of Rhode Island will present plans Wednesday, Oct. 25 at 5:30 p.m. for a 2-mile extension from the William C. O’Neill Bike Path that would provide direct access to the University’s Kingston Campus. The one-hour meeting will be held in the auditorium of the Kirk Center for Advanced Technology, 90 Upper College Road.

Members of the campus community and surrounding towns are invited to the session.

The proposed bike path extension would run from the O’Neill Bike Path along the western border of Peckham Farm, cross Route 138 and continue on campus to the west of Independence Square and the Boss Arena. It would continue through the athletic complex and then end along the new Brookside Apartments at Flagg Road. The small section between Flagg Road and West Alumni Avenue will be constructed as part of the Brookside Apartment project, which begins next semester.

The bike path connector is a key element in the University’s Campus Master Plan, which calls for enhanced pedestrian and improved bicycle access around campus, including bike lanes on campus roads and additional bike racks. Plans call for a special hand-activated signal to assist cyclists and pedestrians in crossing Route 138.

“The bike path extension is a terrific opportunity for the campus to connect to the larger host community,” said Christopher McMahan, director of Campus Planning and Design. “Cycling is a part of the overall transportation plan for the Kingston Campus where our goal is to reduce single-occupancy vehicle use on campus and encourage alternative modes of transportation. It’s also a means for our students to commute by bike to our campus and for our community members to have access to recreational amenities.”

“The URI – South County Bike Path Connector is a transformational project for the University,” said Phil Kydd, URI executive in residence. “This path, once complete, will provide health and recreational benefits, while establishing mobility options and an important link to the statewide bike network for our students, staff, faculty and visitors.”

The project is being funded by a $2.2 million Department of Environmental Management Green Economy Bond grant.

The project is slated to begin in the spring and be completed by fall 2018.