Bury the Waterfront Power Lines in Providence and East Providence
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We call on Governor Raimondo, Providence Mayor Elorza, and East Providence Mayor Rose to make every effort to complete the project of burying the high voltage power lines that run from the Providence River power plant to East Providence. With most of the funds raised, this project has been delayed far too long. Both cities and the State need the economic and environmental benefits it will bring to the Capital Region for generations to come.
Now more than ever, Rhode Island needs an economic boost. Burying the power lines will dramatically upgrade the Providence-East Providence waterfront both for public use and for economic development, just as waterfront properties are becoming available for development in both cities, such as the Shooters site above.
The $17.5 million in funds raised and designated for burial (none of it to come from either city’s budget) represent 90% of National Grid’s 2007 cost estimate for the project. That estimate will increase when updated, but the funds raised will also increase when National Grid updates the interest accrued on the $5.8M it set aside for burial in 2004. Use it or lose it: If not used for burial, the accumulated funds will dissipate with no comparable large scale benefit for the region.
Over ten years, this project has won the support of many city and state politicians, including Governor Chafee and Mayor Taveras, both City Councils, and more than 30 city and state organizations, including business, professional, and environmental organizations and 10 neighborhood groups in Providence.
Meanwhile, the project has stalled because neither the cities nor National Grid have made it a priority to complete it. It is time for action.
For more information, see Friends of India Point Park fact sheets: Talking Points, Economic Benefits of Burial, Funding Update, and Supporters List.
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