Editorial: Good news is good for East Providence

Posted 2/28/19

Publicly and privately, East Providence received a couple of pieces of very good news over the last few days with the announcement the state will receive additional funding that will accelerate the …

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Editorial: Good news is good for East Providence

Posted

Publicly and privately, East Providence received a couple of pieces of very good news over the last few days with the announcement the state will receive additional funding that will accelerate the replacement of the Henderson Bridge connecting the city to Providence while word also came the council likely helped the long-stalled redevelopment of the GeoNova/Washburn Wire property off Roger Williams Avenue move forward.

That the Henderson Bridge will be rebuilt some five years sooner than had been previously planned, announced during a press conference on February 24, should be seen as another boon to the increased revitalization of the city's waterfront area, especially on parcels located on the still relatively new portion of Waterfront Drive.

In terms of the GeoNova/Washburn Wire land, disagreements over which have languished in the legal system for nearly a decade now, it seems the chance of it finally being redeveloped to its potential in the relative near term could actually occur in a reasonable timeframe after the council took up the matter during a special session a week ago. Though the details of the executive confab, understandably, were kept on the down low, the few tidbits that leaked have created a sense of optimism about the future of the property.

As well, the prospects of a new East Providence High School become more palpable with almost every passing day. Last week, the council approved the authorization of the first payments to the architects and project manager, making the replacement structure more real.

And earlier this week, a story which is currently live at eastbayri.com and will be reported on in greater detail in the March 7 edition of The Post, those same principles told the School Committee the schematic designs for the new building are ready to be submitted to the Rhode Island Department of Education for state approval.

Look, there will always be naysayers and nitwits. What would life be like without them? However, it East Providence we tend to focus too much time and energy on the negative as opposed to the positives in the city. We've had, have and will continue to have problems here. There's no doubt. The facts of the matter, though, are that East Providence is in a good place today and could be in an even better one tomorrow.

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.