WaterFire takes place over a one half-mile distance in the river parks lining the three rivers in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. It is best enjoyed by walking and strolling.

How Do I get to Providence?

Trains, planes, and automobiles…or simply by foot.

WaterFire takes place in downtown Providence, Rhode Island, along Memorial Boulevard and the Providence and Woonasquatucket Rivers. It is right at the heart of downtown and runs for just over one half mile from Providence Place to the Crawford Street Bridge. Providence is about a 50 minutes drive from Boston.

Walking

Providence is a wonderfully walkable city and we encourage you to start your adventure off by enjoying the spectacular architecture of the city. You can park in the nearby residential areas of College Hill on the East Side and easily walk down the hill to WaterFire.

Train

WaterFire is one block from the Amtrak Providence Train Station and is also served from Boston by the MBTA and commuter trains and is about a 45 minute train ride from Boston.

Driving

From Interstate 95 North or South, take exit 22 to downtown. The off-ramp brings you onto Memorial Boulevard which runs along the river. WaterFire is on your left after the first set of lights, and the installation extends down past the Crawford Street Bridge. From Route 195, follow the signs for Route 95 north (towards Boston). Stay to the right, take exit 22, and follow the directions above.

Helpful Hints for GPS Navigation

WaterFire occurs over a six by two block area so a single GPS address is a little misleading. The following addresses may be helpful:

Providence Place mall: Convenient paid parking at the west end of the installation. Use “1 Providence Place” or “100 Francis St”.

Myers Parking lot: Convenient paid parking at the exact center of WaterFire. Use “Moshassuck Ct”.

For parking on the street one block away on historic Benefit Street use “251 Benefit St” or “350 Benefit”. Please be considerate of the neighborhood and be careful not to block driveways.

Flying

Providence’s T.F. Green Airport has the best and most convenient traveling services in New England and WaterFire is only 15 minutes from the airport by car. Extensive air service and car rental facilities are available at the airport.

Parking Suggestions

In addition to more than 40 parking lots and garages, downtown Providence has over 1,100 on-street parking spaces. The cost is $0.25/12min ($1.25/hr), and the meters are in effect from Monday-Saturday, 8am-6pm. Parking is FREE all other times. Most streets have parking and meters, with the exceptions of Memorial Drive and Kennedy Plaza. Certain streets (Empire, Green, Claverick, Weybosset, Broadway) feature multi-space meters which require the display of a receipt on the dashboard. Instructions are posted on the meters.

The Rhode Island State House offers parking at One Capitol Hill; specific directions to that parking lot can be found here.

The Providence Place Mall also offers parking in their garage. This parking lot stays open after the mall closes, and payments can be made at the garage’s exit if the mall is closed. More information/specific directions can be found here (the hours listed refer to the mall’s hours, not the parking garage’s, which remains open all night).

Parking Supporters

Getting Home

There are several on-ramps to I-95 and I-195 to get you safely home. Some of the larger parking lots get particularly congested around 10:00 and you may wish to delay your departure and enjoy WaterFire for a little longer.

North bound: I-95 can be reached by heading north/west on Memorial Blvd and taking the on-ramp at Francis Street by Providence Place and the Weston (under the modern yellow pedestrian bridge). Alternatively I-95 North can be reached by heading north on North Main Street and taking on-ramps on Charles Street by the Marriott or on Branch Ave, or on Smithfield Ave. North Main may be reached by travelling East on Smith Street behind the State Capital Building and turning left onto North Main Street. The Branch Ave and Smithfield Ave on-ramps also allow access to I-95 South. I-95 can be reached by getiing on I-195 heading west. The right two lanes merge with I-95 North and the left two lanes merge with I-95 South.

South bound: I-95 can be reached by heading north/west on Memorial Blvd and taking the on-ramp at Francis Street by Providence Place and the Omni Providence Hotel (under the modern yellow pedestrian bridge). Alternatively I-95 South can be reached by traveling south/east on Memorial Blvd past the fires and getting on the west-bound on-ramp of I-195. The on-ramp is on the right and is two lights past Crawford and Pine Streets.

East bound: I-195 East can be reached by traveling south/east on Memorial Blvd past the fires and getting on the east-bound on-ramp of I-195. The on-ramp is on the far side of the I-195 overpass on the left and is two lights past Crawford and Pine Streets. Alternatively it can be reached by heading north on Memorial Blvd and taking I-95 South to the I-195 exit.

West bound: Route 6 West can be reached by heading north/west on Memorial Blvd and proceeding west directly on Route 6 at the on-ramp at Francis Street by Providence Place and the Omni Providence Hotel (under the modern yellow pedestrian bridge).

Please check out Restaurants & Hotels, Other Attractions, FAQ, and WaterFire Access for more information about your trip to Waterfire!

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