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The latest Safe Routes to School project makes it easier and safer for the students of Kickemuit Middle School and Hugh Cole Elementary School in Warren to walk or ride a bike to school. It is part of a series of projects under the federally funded Safe Routes to School program. In a three-year span of newer projects we will have invested $12.2 million into the program.
The centerpiece of this new project is the replacement of the "Broken Bridge," which was destroyed more than 80 years ago during the Hurricane of 1938. We will be building a new 165-foot long pedestrian bridge using lightweight yet strong and long-lasting composite materials. It will connect several neighborhoods on the western side of Kickemuit River with the existing Warren Bike Path on the eastern side of the river. Working in tandem with improvements we are making farther north at Birch Swamp Road, the projects will remove obstructions to tidal flow, reduce flooding, and improve the ecological health of the river with sustainable transportation infrastructure.
The Warren Bike Path passes close to both schools, and RIDOT will make necessary ADA-complaint sidewalk and path extensions to link the schools to the path and bridge. We also will add flashing school zone speed limit signs and make stormwater improvements along the project area.
Warren Bike Path users and those traveling on Barker Avenue should remain extra mindful of weekday pile driving on Barker Avenue, involving construction vehicles entering and exiting the work zones.
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