Cranston Mayor Allan Fung is calling on Providence to halt plans to reroute traffic on a road near the Cranston border. Fung hosted a community forum on the proposed change Tuesday evening.
At issue is the change from two-way to one-way traffic along F. C. Greene Memorial Boulevard, a road which loops along the outer edge of Roger Williams Park. The change is set to go into effect on Thursday.
The road is open to traffic, but is also used by joggers and bikers. Providence officials assert changing the traffic pattern will make the boulevard safer for recreation inside the park. The road also provides easy access to heavily trafficked Broad and Park streets nearby.
Fung says the change will divert heavy traffic into residential neighborhoods that border the park.
“When more traffic is going to be led onto those narrower roads, it’s a public safety concern,” said Fung.
Fung asserts Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza failed to properly notify him and Cranston residents, prompting a petition to stop the project.
“The problem that we have is when you make a design of a traffic flow, that is going to have an impact onto our city streets, without notifying us, without doing a traffic study that we can be a part of, we have issues,” said Fung.
Elorza’s office says Providence commissioned a traffic study, though it did not include every surrounding street. Providence officials say they held several community meetings to discuss the proposal.