Planning & Development

Skip the Bag, Save the River

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by Josh Wood Monday January 11, 2010

This is supposed to be a painting of a bag in the tree. Josh Wood.On Tuesday, January 12 at 7pm, the Cranston Planning Commission will consider the Stop & Shop proposal slated for the Warwick Nurseries property. One of the concessions the neighborhood wants is a moratorium on plastic bags.

It’s a great idea, but I think the ban on bags should be approached in a different way. Instead, all stores in Rhode Island should be required to charge for bags, both paper and plastic.

Some stores have adopted their own policies. Whole Foods has banned bags in its markets nationwide. Some retailers, like Pet Supplies “Plus”, have switched to bio-degradable plastic.

Skip the Bag, Save the RiverStarting January 1, all businesses in Washington DC that sell food or alcohol are required to charge 5 cents for each paper or plastic bag it dispenses. The business keeps up to 2 cents of the fee, and the remainder goes to a local river fund. An interesting note is that the District partnered with Rhode Island corporation CVS to produce and distribute 112,000 reusable bags around the city.

The State of Rhode Island has spent thousands trying to deal with the plastic bag problem. The trees around the landfill flutter with so many loose plastic bags they look like corn stuck in teeth. Anyone remember those knotted plastic bag bunnies on local billboards a few years ago? They were cute, but maybe all that money should’ve been spent on a focus to eliminate the bags in the first place.

I’d love to see the Rhode Island Food Dealers Association get behind this. Pushing for strict statewide restrictions on disposable bags will only make the markets and retailers look better.

[where: 02910]



Thursday April 16, 2015

The Providence Ballpark Proposal and The Fuzzy Math of Stadium Economics

Michael Leeds, a sports economist at Temple University, told Southern California Public Radio that the one thing economists can agree on is that sports stadiums have little to no impact on the local economy. “If you ever had a consensus in economics, this would be it,”


Monday August 1, 2011

Vulnerable And Improbable Transit

Groundhog Day in August. A public demonstration against cuts to Rhode Island Public Transit Authority service was held today in Kennedy Plaza. It’s sad that cuts are looming.


Thursday April 14, 2011

The Convoluted Spiral That Is Cranston Planning

There was an Ordinance Committee meeting preceded by an Finance Committee meeting at Cranston City Hall last night. I know, why the hell would anyone go to that double-header? The masochists turned out in droves.


Monday March 28, 2011

Why Build High-Speed Rail in the Northeast?

This video makes a compelling case for the introduction of true high-speed rail to the Northeast Corridor. The Corridor’s $3 trillion economy, which is 20% of the nation’s total, is relying on infrastructure that’s hundreds of years old.


Monday October 11, 2010

The Warwick Commuter Rail Station Set To Open October 27

The commuter rail station at T.F. Green airport in Warwick is set to open on October 27. The building, called the InterLink, includes a parking garage, car rental facilities, a RIPTA bus stop and moving walkways that connect the station to the airport terminal. The tentative schedule calls for 3 commuter trains from Warwick in the morning, and 3 return trains. The details of the schedule are being finalized by RIDOT and the MBTA.