Believing in Providence
Click on the map below to see the buzzing food scene and new splashy art space in Rhode Island's capital.
A prosperous New England port town grown gritty in the wake of big industry's decline, Providence had few cheerleaders. But thanks to a downtown revitalization effort launched in the early 1980s, Rhode Island's capital city now has a lot to shout about, most notably a pedestrian-friendly riverfront rescued from under a concrete parking lot. The city's brainy, creative community—fed by the presence of Brown University, the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), and the culinary campus of Johnson & Wales University—further packs Providence with personality. With vibrant ethnic neighborhoods and brick sidewalks bordered by restored 18th- and 19th-century homes, Providence is also eminently walkable.