After numerous announcements over the past two years that it would soon happen, the state has awarded a contract for the construction of a 280-foot-long T-shaped pier at Rocky Point Park.
In a joint release Monday, the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and Warwick Mayor Joseph J. Solomon said construction of a new timber fishing pier will begin soon. Financed by RI Capital Plan and Green Economy Bond funding, the $1.8 million project is expected to be completed by December and will provide anglers of all abilities with access to one of the state's prime fishing areas.
“Expanding shoreline and fishing access is core to our mission at DEM and we’re thrilled that the new pier will enable anglers, regardless of their physical abilities, to experience the joy and bounty of fishing on Narragansett Bay,” said DEM Director Janet Coit. “I hope that the public will benefit from this recreational investment and asset for decades to come.”
“Rocky Point is a crown jewel of Warwick and Rhode Island and it’s been wonderful to see so many people enjoying the park once again,” said Solomon. “As council president, I was proud to work cooperatively with DEM to make sure the pier would be reconstructed. It’s a terrific addition to all the improvements that have been made at Rocky Point. It will stand as a symbol of the rich history of the park and our maritime heritage while offering people another way to access our beautiful Bay.”
The new fishing pier will feature a shade structure, benches, railings, and solar lighting. Railing heights will vary to allow people of all ages and abilities to enjoy access to Narragansett Bay.
The completed project will provide saltwater fishing access less than 10 miles from Downtown Providence, advancing a key element of this coastal public park. The fishing pier will complement a variety of recreational opportunities at Rocky Point State Park, including walking, bird-watching, rock climbing, the RI Saltwater Anglers Association’s Youth Fishing Camp (slated for June 25-27 this year), DEM’s popular “Come Clam With Me” workshops, and open spaces for picnics as well as family-focused events like Food Truck Nights and Movie Nights run by the City and other gatherings.
In March 2013, DEM acquired 83 acres at the site of the former Rocky Point amusement park, creating Rhode Island’s newest state park. The state’s parcel was integrated with the 41 acres of shoreline at Rocky Point that was bought by the City of Warwick with the help of state and federal funding in 2007. The now-dilapidated pier at the site once served as a means of bringing people to the former amusement park by boat.
After a competitive bidding process, ACK Marine & General Contracting LLC of Quincy, Mass. was awarded the construction contract.