Rhode Island Public Transit Authority

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RIPTA Logo.png
RIPTA Gillig Low Floor 0517.jpg
RIPTA Gillig #0517 picks up customers on the #51 line at Kennedy Plaza.
Slogan Ride The Wave
Founded 1966
Headquarters 705 Elmwood Avenue
Providence, Rhode Island
Locale Rhode Island (statewide)
Service type transit bus, paratransit, demand responsive transport, rapid transit bus (2014)[1]
Routes 62
Hubs 3 (Kennedy Plaza, Newport Gateway Center, Pawtucket Transportation Center)
Lounge 3 (one at each hub)
Fleet 225 (fixed-route)
16 (Flex)
Daily ridership 45,801 (2018)[3]
Fuel type Diesel, Diesel-electric, CNG
Chief executive Ray Studley
Website www.ripta.com

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) provides public transportation, primarily buses, in the state of Rhode Island. The main hub of the RIPTA system is Kennedy Plaza, a large bus terminal in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. The authority serves 45,800 people a day, in 38 out of 39 Rhode Island communities.[3]


RIPTA was created in 1964 by the Rhode Island General Assembly to supervise what had been previously a system of privately run bus and trolley systems. RIPTA began operating buses on July 1, 1966, inheriting services provided previously by the United Transit Company. Ridership had decreased in Rhode Island after the construction of the Interstate Highway System, and although it has never returned to 1940s levels, RIPTA's ridership has increased slightly over the years as services have been expanded and improved upon.[4]


RIPTA operates services in several categories. All services are operated from two garages: in Providence at 265 Melrose Street and Middletown at 350 Coddington Highway.

Fixed route[edit]

An R-Line bus in downtown Providence

Most of RIPTA's fixed-route bus lines are centered around three major hubs in the cities of Providence at Kennedy Plaza, Pawtucket at the Pawtucket Transit Center, and Newport at the Gateway Center. Two routes run between Providence and Newport, and four routes between Providence and Pawtucket. Three routes run between Providence and Warwick Mall, where they connect with a Coventry-Warwick Mall route and a Warwick crosstown route. A single circulator route is operated in Woonsocket; service was expanded in 2011 to allow residents - many of whom do not own cars - to reach shopping areas outside town.[5]


The R-Line is a limited-stop "Rapid Bus" route from Cranston to Pawtucket via Providence that combines the former 11 and 99 routes. The R-Line became operational on June 21, 2014.

Trolley service[edit]

The East Side Trolley Tunnel, from the west end.
CNG trolley replica #18

In 1999, RIPTA introduced its trolley service, providing service using tourist trolley style replica buses manufactured by Chance Coach & Optima Bus on two downtown Providence circulator lines going north and south of Kennedy Plaza and through the East Side Trolley Tunnel, and on a number of lines running through the Newport Gateway Center in Newport.

Demand response/Flex service[edit]

#0651 works the 211 Flex Service on the URI campus.
RIde #0141 in downtown Providence.

In addition to fixed route services, RIPTA also provides Flex Service service primarily settled around less-populated areas in the state, servicing the communities of Bristol, Burrillville, Coventry, Kingston (including the University of Rhode Island), Middletown, Narragansett, Newport, North Smithfield, Portsmouth, South Kingstown, Tiverton, West Warwick, Westerly, and Woonsocket.

Flex Service list[edit]

Line Route
203 Narragansett Flex
204 Westerly Flex
210 Kingston Flex
211 Kingston Connection
231 South Aquidneck Island
242 West Warwick/Coventry Flex
281 Woonsocket Schedule Flex
282 Pascoag/Slatersville Flex
Hillclimber (seasonal URI student commuter parking lot loop route)

RIde is the demand-response service operated by RIPTA, providing primarily paratransit service throughout the service area of RIPTA. The vehicles used for both service are cutaway vans.


These are the current RIPTA fares.[6]

Base fare Senior/disabled fare Transfers 1-day pass 7-day pass Monthly pass Passes
  • Peak: $2
  • Off-peak: $1
$1.001 $62 $232 $70 3,4
  • e-RIPtik (10 trips): $201,3
  • 15-ride pass: $261,3
  1. The transfer fee is charged only when the base fare is paid. Passes and RIPtiks include transfers at no extra cost.
  2. These passes are sold only on RIPTA fixed-route and Flex vehicles.
  3. These passes are sold only at Kennedy Plaza and participating business.
  4. Half-price monthly passes are available only to students attending schools participating in the U-PASS program.[7][8] URI students utilizing the 211 Flex Route and/or the Hillclimber are not subject to the $2 fare[9]

Active fleet[edit]

Not included here are cutaway vans normally used on Flex service and RIde paratransit and demand response services. The entire fleet is ADA compliant. Except for buses 1001-1010 (trolley replicas), all buses feature bike racks.

Year Manufacturer/Model Length
Fuel Fleet numbers In service
2005 Gillig Low Floor 40 102 Diesel 0516-0536 0538-0550 34
2009 Gillig Low Floor 40 102 Diesel 0912-0935 24
2010 Gillig Trolley Replica 35 102 Hybrid Diesel-Electric 1001-1010 10
2010 Gillig BRT 40 102 Hybrid Diesel-Electric 1021-1073 52
2010 Gillig BRT 35 102 Diesel 1081-1090 10
2013 Gillig BRT 40 102 Diesel 1301-1350 50
2016 Gillig BRT 40 102 Diesel 1601-1642 42
2019 Gillig BRT 40 102 Diesel 1901-1912 12
2018 Proterra[10] Battery Electric[11] 3 (10/22/2018)[12]
Grand total of fixed-route buses: 225

List of Rhode Island Public Transit Authority routes[edit]

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) operates a number of bus routes in Rhode Island. Most are local bus routes based out of Providence; a number of local routes are also based from Newport, Pawtucket, or Woonsocket. The agency operates six express routes to park and ride lots around the state, and one local rapid bus route. The only Rhode Island towns not served by a RIPTA bus route are Foster, Little Compton, Charlestown and New Shoreham.[13] Some rural towns, such as Glocester, Burrillville, Scituate, Richmond, West Greenwich and Tiverton, are only serviced by a single or limited-use line.[13] While two routes run through Jamestown, neither operates on Sundays.[13] The 1 Eddy/Hope/Benefit and 35 Rumford lines were the first two RIPTA routes with stops outside of Rhode Island's borders, as both routes end in a northern terminus at the South Attleboro MBTA station in Massachusetts.[14] RIPTA was required to seek federal permission before the extending the routes across state lines to South Attleboro in 2013.[14] In August 2019, RIPTA added a third line running to Massachusetts, the 24x, an express line which includes stops in Fall River and Somerset that connect to Southeastern Regional Transit Authority lines.[15][16]

The transfer location listed is the primary commuting downtown transfer location(s) that the route serves; for most routes, this is the inbound terminus. Providence-based routes operate from Kennedy Plaza, Pawtucket-based routes from the Pawtucket Transit Center, Newport-based routes from Gateway Center, and Woonsocket-based routes from Woonsocket Depot Square. Two routes which do not run into any of those four cities connect with other routes at Warwick Mall.

An R-Line bus at Providence Station
A bus at Kennedy Plaza on the #51 route
A bus at Kennedy Plaza on the #54 route
A tourist trolley at Gateway Center on the #67 route
A tourist trolley at Kennedy Plaza on the #92 route
Line Route Transfer location
R-Line Broad/North Main Providence, Pawtucket
1 Eddy/Hope/Benefit Providence, Pawtucket
3 Arlington/Oaklawn Providence, Warwick Mall
6 Prairie / R. W. Zoo Providence
8 Jefferson Blvd Providence
9 Pascoag Providence
10x North Scituate Park & Ride Providence
12x Arctic/Rte. 117 Express Park & Ride Providence
13 Coventry/Arctic/Warwick Mall Warwick Mall
14 West Bay Providence, Newport
17 Dyer / Pocasset Providence
18 Union Ave Providence
19 Plainfield / Westminster Providence
20 Elmwood Ave Providence
21 Reservoir/Garden City Providence, Warwick Mall
22 Pontiac Ave Providence, Warwick Mall
24x Newport/Fall River/Providence Providence, Newport
27 Broadway / Manton Providence
28 Broadway / Hartford Providence
29 Kent County Warwick Mall
30 Warwick Ave Providence
31 Cranston St Providence
32 East Providence/Wampanoag Providence
33 Riverside Providence
34 East Providence Providence
35 Rumford Providence
40 Butler/Elmgrove/Tunnel Providence
49 Camp St / Miriam Hospital Providence
50 Douglas Ave Providence
51 Charles St Providence
54 Lincoln / Woonsocket Providence, Woonsocket
55 Admiral / Prov College Providence
56 Chalkstone Ave Providence
57 Smith St Providence
58 Mineral Spring / N Providence Providence
59x North Smithfield/Lincoln Express Park & Ride Providence
60 Providence / Newport Providence, Newport
61x Tiverton/East Bay Park & Ride Providence
62 URI/ Providence Station Providence
63 Broadway / Middletown Shop Newport
64 Newport / URI Newport
65X Wakefield Express Providence
66 URI / Galilee Providence
67 Bellevue / Mansions Newport
69 Hillclimber (URI) Kingston
70 URI Engineer Line Kingston
71 Broad Street / Pawtucket Ave Pawtucket
72 Weeden / Central Falls Providence, Pawtucket
73 Fairlawn / CCRI Pawtucket
75 Dexter / Lincoln Mall Pawtucket
76 Central Ave Pawtucket
78 Beverage Hill / Newport Ave Providence, Pawtucket
80 Armistice Blvd Pawtucket
87 Fairmount / Walnut Hill Woonsocket
92 RIC/Federal Hill/East Side Providence
95x Westerly Park & Ride Providence
QX Quonset Point Pawtucket


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-06-25. Retrieved 2014-07-16.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ RIPTA stats from the NTD Program
  3. ^ a b "About". www.ripta.com. Retrieved 2018-12-31.
  4. ^ RIPTA History
  5. ^ Saslow, Eli (16 March 2013). "Food stamps put Rhode Island town on monthly boom-and-bust cycle". Washington Post. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  6. ^ RIPTA fares
  7. ^ In the final Assembly hours, college-student bus passes are the hot topic | General Assembly | projo.com | The Providence Journal
  8. ^ Lincoln Technical Institute Signs On for RIPTA's U-PASS Program
  9. ^ http://m.ripta.com/stuff/contentmgr/files/0/6dedc10bbbc006853e273c3a797a66df/pdf/flex211_sep12_fin.pdf
  10. ^ https://www.ripta.com/stuff/contentmgr/files/0/9315b5aba42359606d1c79ec41f93e96/files/bod_minutes_7.17.18_final.pdf
  11. ^ https://www.reed.senate.gov/news/releases/reed-delivers-15-million-to-ripta-for-new-electric-buses
  12. ^ https://upriseri.com/news/transportation/ripta/2018-09-24-ripta/
  13. ^ a b c "RIPTA System Map" (PDF). RIPTA. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  14. ^ a b LANDIS, BRUCE. "RIPTA prepares to reorganize routes to improve service". providencejournal.com. Retrieved 4 May 2019.
  15. ^ staff, Daily News. "RIPTA adds new express service connecting Newport to Providence, Fall River". The Newport Daily News. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  16. ^ "24x Newport/Fall River/Providence". www.ripta.com. Retrieved 14 September 2019.

External links[edit]