Lawmaker: Don’t cut bicycle, pedestrian access project money

Teresa Tanzi_573762

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A state lawmaker says Rhode Island shouldn’t shift funding from bicycle and pedestrian traffic improvement projects to pay for fixing roads and bridges.

Democratic Rep. Teresa Tanzi, of South Kingstown, urged the State Planning Council on Tuesday to reject the proposal. The council plans to vote Thursday on amending the State Transportation Improvement Program, which lists planned transportation projects.

Among nearly 500 proposed changes, Tanzi says $37 million would be cut from bicycle and pedestrian access projects.

The state Transportation Department, which requested the revision, emphasized the importance of fixing structurally-deficient bridges in a letter.

Tanzi says Rhode Island shouldn’t backpedal on efforts to be more walkable and bike-friendly.

She says the state recently received federal funding for transportation and can address both bicycle and pedestrian projects and roads and bridges.

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