Across the U.S., local governments are taking steps to tear down downtown highways and rebuild the traditional urban girds that characterized cities before the 20th century’s love affair with the automobile. In Providence, R.I., this process began more than 20 years ago, when officials began to rethink the location of Interstate 195. Over the last decade, the state has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into removing and relocating the highway. Now, the city is at a crossroads as it determines how to redevelop the land that the road once smothered. Writer Yonah Freemark offers a compelling narrative of how Providence got where it is today and explores the challenges facing city planners as they move beyond changing transportation infrastructure to changing the culture that grows up alongside it.
- Learn how Providence succeeded in relocating the highway tearing apart its downtown, and what that means for the city now.
- Get to know the people reconfiguring downtown Providence.
- Explore the different, and sometimes opposing, visions for the developable land left in the footprint of the highway.