The Gateway Center
In the Fall of 2022, the Providence Parks Department and our partners at Providence Redevelopment Authority and the Planning and Development Department will be debuting a new Gateway and Visitor’s Center for Roger Williams Park. As its name suggests, the new facility will become a gateway from Broad Street to Roger Williams Park’s many recreational opportunities, greatly improving the lens through which park visitors see the Washington Park and surrounding neighborhoods, and how neighbors view their connection to the park.
As we work closely with our non-profit partners, the Roger Williams Park Conservancy, the Met School, Johnson & Wales University, GoProvidence, and many others, visitors will be able to access information about the many free public events, amenities, and services in Roger Williams Park, the surrounding neighborhoods, and along the Broad Street Corridor.
Roger Williams Park was created in 1871 after Betsey Williams bequeathed 102 acres of farmland and woodland to the city of Providence to be used for public purpose. A portion of the gift included land that was shared with her great, great, great grandfather, Rhode Island founder Roger Williams, by the Narragansett sachems Canonicus and Miantonomo.
Horace Cleveland, a leader in the Urban Parks Movement, created the design for the Park. It was intended to serve as an escape for those working in highly industrialized Providence in the late nineteenth century. Twenty years after Betsey’s bequest, the Park quadrupled in size and daily attendance had grown to 15,000 visitors.
Comprised of more than 435 beautiful acres and offering a range of recreational and educational opportunities, Roger Williams Park still serves as “the people’s pleasure ground” that Cleveland intended, hosting family picnics, community festivals, weddings, and running groups. Each year over 1.5 million visitors from around the state – and beyond! – enjoy the same scenery and activities as past generations. The People’s Park truly represents Rhode Island’s rich and diverse history.
Hours of Operation
Roger Williams Park is open daily from 7AM to 9PM
The Gateway Center is open daily from 10AM to 7PM
Directions & Parking
1197 Broad Street, Providence, RI 02907
View directions >>
Interested in hosting an event at the Gateway Center?