Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 10-31-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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10 LINCOLN OCTOBER 31-NOVEMBER 6, 2019 | VALLEY BREEZE | CUMBERLAND LINCOLN EDITION LINCOLN – Two years after the National Park Service announced its intention to set up a local headquar- ters for the Blackstone River Valley National Historic Park at a welcome center on Route 295, all remains quiet. In late 2017, The Valley Breeze report- ed that a space inside the Blackstone River Valley State Park Visitor Center would soon become the headquarters for the Valley's newest national park, which was established in 2014. Two years after the announcement was made, construction has not begun on the NPS offices. The goal is to transform a space that formally housed The Outpost general store into NPS offices to promote the attractions and organize activities in the area. The visitor center is located along the Blackstone River Bikeway and is accessed via Route 295. The Outpost closed three years ago after the Federal Highway Administration said it would no lon- ger allow retail operations inside the 10,000-square-foot building. That space remains vacant awaiting the start of construction, leaving the 295 Visitor Center mostly empty. The NPS plans to convert the former Outpost space into offices, partnering with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor on the project. In a statement to The Breeze, DEM's Chief Public Affairs Officer Michael Healey said, "All parties hope that work will begin soon." The Heritage Corridor has hired Northeast Collaborative Architects, and architectural plans are 75 to 100 percent complete, according to Healey, "meaning just about ready to go." Although a construction firm has been chosen, Healey said it cannot be disclosed until the contracts are signed. BHC is the project manager, while the NPS will be the leaseholder. BHC Executive Director Devon Kurtz said, "We're excited to get the project underway because we think it will benefit the public and our partner agencies in many ways. BHC, the National Park Service, and DEM are committed to the long-term vitality of the Blackstone River Valley." "We partner with municipalities, nonprofits, businesses and residents to reinvigorate the valley, and run a range of programs and events to con- nect people to the National Heritage Corridor and its nationally significant resources," he added. "We think locating the headquar- ters of the Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park right on the bikeway, which will allow park rang- ers to get out into local communi- ties, will be a wonderful opportunity to deepen our relationships with the public." Construction yet to begin on NPS offices By NICOLE DOTZENROD Valley Breeze Staff Writer nicole@valleybreeze.com While construc- tion has not yet begun, this por- tion of the ROUTE 295 VISITORS CENTER will even- tually house the Blackstone River Valley National Historic Park's headquarters. The interior of the ROUTE 295 VISITOR CENTER, which will be the local home to the National Park Service. IN BRIEF Computer classes at Lincoln library Tuesday LINCOLN – Learn the basics of Excel, Microsoft Office's spread- sheet program, at the Lincoln Public Library, 145 Old River Road, on three consecutive ses- sions starting on Tuesday, Nov. 5, at 6:30 p.m. The other two sessions follow on Tuesdays, Nov. 12 and Nov. 19. By registering for the first session, you are automatically registered for all of the sessions. On Thursday, Nov. 7, at 6:30 p.m., learn the basics of Google Drive. You should already have a Gmail account set up before attend- ing this class. Family Yoga at MacColl YMCA Nov. 10 LINCOLN – Join the MacColl YMCA, 32 Breakneck Hill Road, on Sunday, Nov. 10, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., for family yoga, an after- noon of goodwill, fellowship and family fun. The suggested donation is $5 per person or $20 per family with 100 percent of the proceeds being donated to Freedom for Immigrants, an organization which directly helps reunite separated families at the borders. Contact shelley.iacovnoe@gmail. com or the YMCA at 401-725-0773. Lego Club for Kids at Lincoln library Nov. 9 LINCOLN – The Lincoln Public Library's Duplos and Legos are available at the library, 145 Old River Road, for creative use on Saturdays, Nov. 9 and Nov. 23, from noon to 4 p.m. Build, create, destroy and start again. No registration is needed, just show up ready to build.

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