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June 27, 2007
Navigating Newport for visits by a president, Tall Ships
Journal photo / Frieda Squires
The Pride of Baltimore, seen in Narragansett Bay between Jamestown and Newport, heads into Newport Harbor yesterday for the Amica Insurance Tall Ships Rhode Island 2007 event.
NEWPORT -- With the double whammy of Tall Ships festivities and President Bush's visit tomorrow, people heading to events or just trying to get around the City by the Sea through the weekend should be prepared for big changes.
Remember, first of all, that Newport is on an island and accessible to most by bridges -- the Pell Bridge connecting it with Jamestown and the Mount Hope Bridge linking it to Bristol. Traffic may back up at either point.
If you're thinking of going by boat, you might want to weigh anchor first at the Newport harbormaster's site.
"All visitors" to Newport are urged to park outside of the city and to use a bus-shuttle system, which will be in place tomorrow through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., according to the Tall Ships Web site.
The cost to park in any of the lots to take the shuttle is $15 per car. The shuttle bus to downtown Newport is free. Admission to Tall Ships is free.
Here are the places to park and from there take the shuttle, and click here for a map to help orient yourself:
-- For visitors coming from places south or west, lot one is at the bridge interchange from the Pell Bridge. Shuttles will run every 20 minutes to the Gateway Visitors Center on America's Cup Avenue in downtown Newport.
-- Lot two is at Middletown High School -- in Middletown, immediately north of Newport -- for people arriving from places north and east. Middletown High School is on Valley Road between East Main Road -- Route 138 -- and Green End Avenue.
-- Also for people arriving from places north and east, lot three is at Gaudet Middle School in Middletown. Gaudet Middle School is on Turner Road, south of where the road meets East Main Road (Route 138).
Signs will direct traffic to lots, and the state traffic radio station AM 1630 will have updates.
Read on for more ways to get around in the next few days.
-- projo.com staff writer Michael P. McKinney
Parking meters will be posted “No Parking” in the Long Wharf area to accommodate vendors’ tents from today through Sunday, the polcie said.
On Saturday, there is a ship crew parade from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. that begins at the Old Colony House on Washington Square, marching down to Thames Street and onto America's Cup Avenue, then to Thames Street to King Park on Wellington Avenue.
As a result, according to the police, parking will be restricted from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the metered spaces on the south side of Washington Square and on Thames Street from the Red Parrot restaurant to Lee Avenue.
The police said all businesses should ask their regular delivery companies to complete their deliveries prior to 9 a.m. for their convenience.
A free bus shuttle will run between the corner of America's Cup Avenue and Thames Street -- the Red Parrot Jug Handle -- to Fort Adams State Park every 20 minutes for those visiting ships, the Fort Adams Tall Ships Fair, and to view crew and cadet sports activities from this scenic harbor vista.
There is also a harbor shuttle connecting the downtown and Fort Adams locations via Perrotti Park. Perrotti Park is one block south of the Gateway Center, overlooking the harbor.
Handicapped accessible shuttle buses will be available from all three Tall Ships parking lots. Handicapped accessible parking spaces are also available at the Gateway Center and Fort Adams. Tall Ships organizers recommend people needing handicapped accessibility and who plan to visit Fort Adams drive directly to Fort Adams and park there.
The Tall Ship Friendship is the only one with handicapped accessibility and is berthed at Fort Adams.
Visitors who want to view the Tall Ships berthed along America’s Cup Avenue may find convenient parking at the Gateway Center and use a handicapped-accessible shuttle service, which will run along America’s Cup between Gateway Center and the Post Office -- the corner of America’s Cup and Memorial Boulevard.
-- Traveling by water? The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority -- RIPTA -- has a Providence to Newport ferry boat. It has stops at Conley's Wharf -- Providence Piers located at 180 Allens Ave. -- and Newport's Perrotti Park. Reservations are recommended. Call (401) 453-6800 or reserve seats at www.nefastferry.com.
And there's a Jamestown to Newport ferry, which makes stops at Jamestown, Rose Island, Fort Adams, Bowen's Landing and Perotti Park. Two boats will run during the Tall Ships period due to more visitors. Go to www.conanicutmarina.com. Parking is available to customers, which is part of the ticket price.
-- Traveling by bus? Rhode Island Public Transit Authority runs from Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence to various routes. Check out RIPTA information by clicking here.
There's also a Peter Pan Bonanza bus terminal in Providence
By train, there's the Amtrak Kingston Station off Route 138 in West Kingston, which is 18 miles -- about 30 minutes -- from Newport. And there's the Amtrak Providence Station in Providence, which is 34 miles, or 45 minutes, from Newport.
There are also car rental agencies in the region.
Posted by Mike McKinney at 1:20 PM | Permalink
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