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South County Bike Path

WELCOME TO THE WILLIAM C. O’NEILL BIKE PATH!


Welcome to South County's William C. O'Neill Bike Path, one of the premiere paths in the North East. The path was formerly called, and is still frequently referred to as the South County Bike Path. Presently, the path is 7 miles in length but when completed, it will be approximately 8 miles. From the Kingston train station, the path follows the easement of the old Narragansett Pier Railroad passing through the villages of Peace Dale, Wakefield, and Narragansett and will end near the Narragansett Town Beach.

Narragansett Looks to Manage Design and Construction of Phase 4

August 8th, 2017

The Narragansett Town Council held a Public Hearing on Monday, August 7 to solicit and review projects for submittal to the State of Rhode Island for inclusion in the 2018-2027 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), including completion of the William C. O’Neill/South County Bike Path.  Mike DeLuca, Director of Community Development, made a presentation on the town staff’s proposal to modify the current TIP-funded project of the completion of the William C. O’Neill South County Bike Path in which the town will manage design and construction of the remaining portions of the bike path.  The alignment and funding amounts remain the same.  These modifications include:

1. The TIP Funding would be for construction of the bike path from the northeast corner of the playing field at Narragansett Elementary School through Canonchet Farm to Narragansett Beach which is about 1 mile.  This section of the plan is now designated as 4B (see map below) to distinguish it from the Town Council’s recently approved Department of Environmental Management/Green Economy Bond funded section of the Bike Path from Mumford Road behind the berm at Narragansett Elementary School to the Community Center, which is now designated as 4A.

2. The second change in this TIP plan is that the RI Department of Transportation would turn over the planning, design and construction of the final phase of the bike path to the Town of Narragansett.  Design would include route selection through Canonchet Farm, necessary environmental permits and engineering.   The construction would include right of way clearing, site preparation, paving including any special construction methods (such as elevated segments), and appurtenances.  The Town of Narragansett would use the $8.3 million that the RI Department of Transportation has already allocated for this project.  No town funds would be used for this project.

3. The third change is that the Town of Narragansett would accelerate the completion of the final phase of the bike path from the State’s proposed seven-year plan to the Town of Narragansett’s three to four year-plan. The projected start of this plan is 2018.

    The Narragansett Town Council agreed with the staff’s recommendation and voted 5-0 to change the wording and keep the Completion of the William C. O’Neill Bike Path Phase 4B as a High Priority in the FFY 2018-2027 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).

    So, this is exceptionally good news for the supporters of the O’Neill/South County Bike Path as the Narragansett Town Council’s approval of the revised TIP plan is a win, win, win: local control, earlier completion and no diminishment of funding. (Click the map to enlarge to image.)

    More Progress with the Green Economy Bond, Narragansett Town Council

    July 26th, 2017

    In our March 22 post, we discussed the award of the $750,000 Green Economy Bond Grant to the Town of Narragansett to design and construct a portion of the final segment of the South County Bike Path (aka Phase 4A).

    With the start of the new fiscal year (July 1, 20 17) the town has moved forward on this project. At its regular meeting on Monday, July 17, the Town Council formally accepted the Green Economy Bond grant of $750,000 and authorized Town Manager Jim Manni to sign an agreement with the RI Department of Environmental Management (DEM).

    A second agenda item awarded to the lowest bidder, DiPrete Engineering, a contract for Professional Engineering, Land Surveying, Permitting and Design Services for Phase 4A of the Bike Path.

    Just to repeat the description of this segment of the South County Bike Path:

    The funded project, dubbed Phase 4A, includes three components:

    • Provide a safe crossing at Mumford Road where the South County Bike Path currently ends at Mumford Road in Narragansett.
    • Construct the first 1,375 feet of the proposed off-road route through Canonchet Farm to the Narragansett Town Beach. This portion begins at Mumford Road and travels on town property behind the Narragansett Elementary School schoolyard and the adjacent athletic field to a point where the remainder of the Phase 4 route turns northeast to travel on the grade of the SeaView Railroad and through Canonchet Farm.
    • Construct a 375-foot bike path along the east side of the athletic field to the Narragansett Community Center parking lot.

    With the loop around the school property, bicyclists and walkers will have a safe entrance to the bike path, enjoy the convenience of public parking spaces and avoid the dangerous vehicular traffic in front of the Narragansett Elementary School. In the meantime, funding for the balance of Phase 4 remains in the 2017-2025 R.I. Transportation Improvement Program.

    EPA Sponsoring an Open House & Earth Day Fair in Narragansett, Saturday, May 13

    April 20th, 2017

    Click here for more information.

    Completion of the South County Bike Path Gets Boost with Green Economy Bond Grant

    March 22nd, 2017

    On Monday, March 13, 2017, Governor Gina Raimondo announced the award of a $750,000 grant to the Town of Narragansett to build a portion of the final segment (Phase 4) of the William C. O’Neill South County Bike Path. (Read the March 13 announcement.)

    A week later, Narragansett took the first step in the process when the Town Council members voted 5 to 0 to instruct town staff to draft a request for proposal for design services.

    The grant is part of the $10 million allocated for bikeway completion and connections in the Green Economy Bond approved by Rhode Island voters in November 2016. Nine other projects will also receive Green Economy Bond funding, including a bike path connection between the University of Rhode Island and the South County Bike Path. The funding, which is administered by the R.I. Department of Environmental Management, will be available in July.

    The funded project, dubbed Phase 4A, includes three components:

    Provide a safe crossing at Mumford Road where the South County Bike Path currently ends at Mumford Road in Narragansett.

    Construct the first 1,375 feet of the proposed off-road route through Canonchet Farm to the Narragansett Town Beach. This portion begins at Mumford Road and travels on town property behind the Narragansett Elementary School schoolyard and the adjacent athletic field to a point where the remainder of the Phase 4 route turns northeast to travel on the grade of the SeaView Railroad and through Canonchet Farm.

    Construct a 375-foot bike path along the east side of the athletic field to the Narragansett Community Center parking lot.

    With the loop around the school property, bicyclists and walkers will have a safe entrance to the bike path, enjoy the convenience of public parking spaces and avoid the dangerous vehicular traffic in front of the Narragansett Elementary School. In the meantime, funding for the balance of Phase 4 remains in the 2017-2025 R.I. Transportation Improvement Program as described in the January 5, 2017 post.

    Phase 4 Funding in Place

    January 5th, 2017
    A little more than a mile remains to complete the William C. O’Neill South County Bike Path from the Kingston Station to the Narragansett Town Beach, and funding is now in place to finish the bike path with an entirely off-street route through Canonchet Farm. Construction of the path was begun in 2000 using the easement of the former Narragansett Railroad through the Great Swamp, Peace Dale and Wakefield, and with the completion of Phase 3 in 2011, to Mumford Road near the Narragansett Elementary School.
    Applications submitted by the Friends of the South County Bike Path and the Town of Narraganset have resulted in budgeting for the final segment of the bike path in the state’s 2017-2025 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), with funding beginning this year for design and construction of the final segment of the path using an “off-road route through Canonchet Farm.” However, the project is phased over the next six years with funding in the out years less certain.
    The Green Economy Bond approved by the voters in November 2016 represents a second funding source that may accelerate completion of the path. The R.I. Department of Environmental Management is now reviewing proposals for completing and connecting bikeways around the state including the South County Bike Path.

    Completing the South County Bike Path

    April 3rd, 2016

    On January 7, the Friends of the William C. O’Neill South County Bike Path submitted an application to R.I. Statewide Planning to have Completion of the South County Bike Path via Canonchet Farm in Narragansett placed on the Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) for the ten-year period beginning September 1, 2016. Placement on the TIP is the first step in securing Federal and State funding for transportation projects. The Friends of the South County Bike Path proposed the same plan as the Town of Narragansett did in its multi-project TIP application. Public hearings on a draft of the full TIP will be held in May.

    Routing the Bike Path through Canonchet Farm will provide accessible views of Pettaquamscutt Cove.

    Currently, the South County Bike path extends from Kingston Station in the north to Mumford Road in Narragansett. Users then take a variety of often-busy, on-street routes to reach the Narragansett Town Beach, Pier area stores or other Narragansett locations. The proposed path starts at Mumford Road, traverses through Canonchet Farm, and ends in the parking area across Boston Neck Road (Scenic Route 1A) from the Narragansett Town Beach. This proposed bike path is more expensive and requires more permitting than on-road alternatives evaluated by the R.I. Department of Transportation, but it provides the safest route to the beach, a superior recreational experience, and the best return on investment for tourism and economic development for the Narragansett Pier area, South County and all of Rhode Island. The proposed bike path extension through Canonchet Farm represents an opportunity to complete a vital transportation alternative serving Narragansett and South Kingstown and will enable the South County Bike Path to achieve its full potential as a major recreational asset for Rhode Island.

    Click the links below to view the files that make up Friends of the Bike Path application (please allow time for the selected file to download):

    Phase 3 Grand Opening

    July 25th, 2011

    The Friends of the William C. O’Neill Bike Path invite you to attend the ribbon cutting of Phase 3 of our bike path. Join Governor Chafee, DOT Director Michael Lewis, the Town’s officials and other dignitaries.

    Wednesday July 27th at 1:30 p.m.

    The event will be held at the railroad tunnel entrance just off MacArthur Blvd., about 1200 feet from Kingstown Road (Rt. 108) in Wakefield.

    For additional information, please call 401-783-8886

    Rolling into Narragansett…

    May 18th, 2011

    PHASE 3 CONSTRUCTION UPDATE

    February 17th, 2011

    The construction of this phase of the bike path has been on schedule. Undoubtedly winter plays a factor in how long construction can continue. The schedule called for putting down the first of two coats of paving. Due to this extreme cold weather, this will be postponed until next spring. However, gravel will be place over the packed fill, and weather permitting, some of the fencing will be installed. We will keep you posted as the progress continues for a scheduled completion in late spring 2011.

    Complete Streets

    November 17th, 2010

    The Rhode Island Chapter of the Sierra Club hosted a South Kingstown Community Meeting at URI Monday evening in support of the Complete Streets movement. Read the full article by Frank Mastrobuono of SouthKingstown.Patch.com here.


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