The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) has received approval from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to proceed with construction of the next ten tolling gantries in Rhode Island. The FHWA had reviewed the environmental assessment submitted by RIDOT and issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) which clears the path for construction.

In its letter, the FHWA said, “This Finding of No Significant Impact is based on the attached Environmental Assessment, which has been independently evaluated by the FHWA and determined to adequately and accurately discuss the need, environmental issues, and impacts of the proposed project.”

The contractor has been issued the notice to proceed for construction of the next ten locations. The first location is expected to be completed and activated by May 2019 with the remaining locations activated over the following year.

A map of the tolling locations is available at www.ridot.net/tolling.

The RIDOT estimates that gantries will go up in quick succession once construction starts with a gantry being built every one to two months. The ten gantries should be in place by May 2020.

The tolling program to date has functioned as expected. Since tolling began at locations 1 and 2, the tolling program has collected $3,706,836. There has been no diversion from the routes as a result of tolling at locations 1 and 2. The program has tolled 1,120,190 verified vehicles.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.