PROVIDENCE – Saying the Route 146 – a main thoroughfare connecting northern Rhode Island to the rest of the state – is a “disaster,” Rep. Brian Newberry is calling on the Rhode Island Department of Transportation to end delays in paving the road.

Recently, RIDOT reportedly announced that they intend to delay repaving of Route 146 between Route 295 and the 146A split originally scheduled for 2022 to 2024 due to “evaluation of pavement conditions and funding availability.” In March of 2018, 20 northern Rhode Island legislators requested that the repaving be moved up from 2022 to an earlier date.

“For the past few years, I have quietly been trying to get RIDOT to fully appreciate the disaster that Route 146 has become,” Newberry wrote in a August 7 letter addressed to DOT Director Peter Alviti. “The net result, so far as I can tell, was a small patch job done on about 50 feet around the traffic light at the Sayles Hill Road intersection.”

Newberry said to delay the paving to 2024 is a “slap in the face to every resident of northern Rhode Island.”

Route 146, Newberry writes, is “no ordinary road,” but rather is one of five main limited access highways into the state and the major point of entry to anyone coming from the Mass Pike.

“To allow this road to remain in its current deplorable condition is unconscionable and a violation of RIDOT’s basic duty, which is to ensure quality roads for our citizens,” Newberry said. “To be blunt, this is ridiculous.”

The District 48 representative, now serving his sixth term, ends by demanding action on the road, which he notes, “is quite literally disintegrating on a daily basis even in good summer weather.”

The recent communication was again signed by 20 members of the General Assembly including Burrillville Rep. David Place and Sen. Jessica de la Cruz.

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