To celebrate National Train Day and highlight the progress made at the site of the future Wickford Junction Train Station in North Kingstown, Governor Lincoln D. Chafee, Senator Jack Reed, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT), and the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) gathered today to talk about Rhode Island's newest commuter rail station.
To date, 15 percent of the garage's precast pieces have been erected, 89 percent of the platform piers are in place, and 100 percent of the garage foundation is completed.
"When the Wickford Junction Train Station opens early next year commuters will have a green traffic-free alternative," said Governor Chafee. "We can't build our way out of congestion, but we can build a beautiful station that will make getting to Warwick, Providence, and Boston much easier."
The Wickford Junction Train Station will expand Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) commuter rail service south from Providence and Warwick to North Kingstown. An 800-foot train platform, a 1,100-space on-site parking garage, and new access off of Ten Rod Road (Route 102) are part of a design-build contract with Manafort Brothers, Inc. Amtrak is making $10 million worth of track and signal work improvements.
"When this station opens, 10 arrivals and 10 departures are expected each week day," said RIDOT Director Michael P. Lewis. "The InterLink will see this increase in service this Fall so when the Wickford Junction Train Station is completed in early 2012, these train will simply continue south to the new station."
The multi-modal InterLink stop at T.F. Green Airport opened in December 2010 and has become a hub for commuters headed to Boston. Connecting planes, trains, buses, and automobiles the facility is on target to meet its ridership projections once service is expanded.
Wickford Junction is also expected to be a multi-modal facility. Buses headed to points north could make this a new stop adding to the improved regional mobility.
"The commuter rail line and this station add to the mode choices available to Rhode Island residents… a total win for all commuters," said RIPTA CEO Charles Odimgbe.
RIDOT broke ground for the Wickford Junction Train Station in August 2010. The Station was designed as a travel alternative to the heavily traveled southern corridor of I-95 and Route 4.
Commuter rail tickets from Wickford to Providence will cost $2.50 each way. Tickets between Wickford and Boston will cost $9.00 each way. The cost of driving and city parking is far greater.
According to Amtrak, National Train Day celebrates America's love for trains with events across the country. This year, Amtrak is holding its festivities on Saturday, May 7 in Washington, D.C. Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Chicago. It is also celebrating its 40th anniversary. Amtrak will not be stopping in Wickford as Kingston Station, a regular station stop, is approximately 8 miles away.
Contact: Dana Alexander Nolfe 401-222-1362 x4450