Administration Press Releases

Bristol Announces New Bicycle Connector Planning Study

August 18, 2020

Diane Williamson, AICP – Director of Community Development
Town of Bristol, RI
401-253-7000 x 126
[email protected]

Bristol, RI– The Town of Bristol has launched efforts to design and establish the Bristol Bicycle Connector, a series of improvements to bicycle and pedestrian facilities to connect the southern terminus of the East Bay Bike Path with the southern area of Bristol for safer and more efficient commuting and recreation.

For the past several years, the Town of Bristol has been exploring options to enhance connectivity for bicyclists and pedestrians in town. A focus has been on the connection from the Roger Williams University campus to the East Bay Bike Path and downtown Bristol to expand opportunities for students, staff, and faculty to commute and further integrate with the community and spur economic growth for downtown businesses.  

“We are very excited about the opportunity for a potential bicycle path to connect the end of the East Bay Bike Path to the southern part of Bristol.  There are many benefits for the residents, including an increased opportunity for more active recreation.” said Diane Williamson, Director of Community Development.    

 The Town has convened a Steering Committee to help guide the planning process and build consensus for the preferred design concept.  In June, the Town selected the consultant team of Fuss & O’Neill and Toole Design to assist the Town with the Connector’s design. During August and September 2020, the team will conduct an alternatives analysis to evaluate potential routes and engage with the public to assess the routes and make recommendations for a preferred alternative. Once selected, the Town will move forward to complete the design and permitting of the chosen route.

Members of the public can participate in the process in several ways:

  • Presentations and workshops will take place on Zoom, and links to all meetings will be on the Bristol Bicycle Connector website. The following events are currently scheduled:
    • Town Council presentation of Route Alternatives on 8/19/20 – 7 pm
    • Community Workshop to discuss Route Alternatives on 8/25/20 – 7 pm (Zoom Invite)
    • Town Council presentation of prioritized Route Alternatives on 9/9/20 – 7 pm
    • Community Workshop to discuss prioritized Route Alternatives on 9/16/20 – 7 pm
    • Presentation to Town Council on 9/30/20 – 7 pm

The study is funded by a grant from the 2018 Green Economy Bond of Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. The program supports communities improving facilities for cycling and recreation. The Town of Bristol has no local match for this study.


Press Releases

Bristol Unveils New Town Website


BRISTOL, RI– On Friday, August 14th, 2020, the Town of Bristol unveiled its revamped municipal website. The new offers an improved, modernized look with a mobile-responsive and easy-to-navigate design.

In addition to its updated design, this website includes several new features/improvements:

  • Reformatted content and site structure to make the user experience more intuitive.
  • Improved site performance with faster load times and smoother transitions through the content.
  • Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology as HTTPS protocols ensure a user’s internet connection to the site is secure.
  • Interactive content, including Bristol’s Places of Interest and Business Community Overview.

 “It was our goal to improve access to the Town’s online resources and make the site more user-friendly for our residents and taxpayers,” said Town Administrator Steven Contente.

Visitors to the site are advised that the website may not be fully optimized with all its capabilities for the few weeks after the initial launch as the Town completes its transition.

To provide feedback or offer a suggestion on the new website, please email the Town at [email protected]. Enjoy the site!


Administration Press Releases

Bristol Announces Retirement of Library Director Prescott

BRISTOL, RI-Earlier today, Library Staff and supporters gathered to celebrate Rogers Free Library Director Joan Prescott. Director Prescott announced her retirement after over 30 years of service to visitors of the Library. Joan has been integral in the successful operation and expansion of the Rogers Free Library. Director Prescott’s last day will be this Friday, August 14th, 2020. The Town of Bristol extends its best wishes and appreciates her many years of service. Pictured are Town Administrator Steven Contente and Town Treasurer Raquel Pellerin presenting Joan Prescott with the Town Coin at the Library.


Administration Press Releases

Tropical Storm Isaias Update

AUGUST 3, 2020

(401) 253-2310
[email protected]

BRISTOL, RI-The Town of Bristol is closely monitoring the movements of Tropical Storm Isaias as it makes its way up the east coast towards Southern New England. A Tropical Storm Warning is currently in effect as high winds and heavy rain are expected to arrive by Tuesday afternoon and continue into Wednesday. While the Town stands ready and prepared for any emergency, residents are asked to prepare in advance for possible power outages. Please tune in to local news and weather forecasts for any developments.


Administration COVID-19 Press Releases

Motor Vehicle Tax Bills Delayed

BRISTOL, RI – Due to the uncertainty surrounding the State budget process, Motor Vehicle Tax bills are not being sent at this time. The Town of Bristol has been made aware that there may be changes made to the Motor Vehicle tax phase-out program. As a result, the Town will wait until the State budget is finalized before sending out the tax bills.  Quarterly due dates will be adjusted accordingly. For more information, please contact Michelle DiMeo, Bristol’s Tax Assessor / Collector at [email protected].


COVID-19 Press Releases

COVID–19 Temporary Vault Access Procedure

August 24th, 2020 Update: New England Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) released updated guidance on handling books and other archival materials during the COVID-19 crisis here.


“The Town has been informed through the State Archives that there are certain risks relating to transmission of COVID-19 through the handling of books and other archival materials. A detailed set of guidelines, as provided by the New England Document Conservation Center (NEDCC), can be found here.

This information has led the Town Clerk’s office to make the difficult decision of limiting Town Vault access with in a manner that is suggested to be safe for all of our customers who wish to handle the books and maps held in our vault.

Please be aware that more than 30 years of Land Evidence records, and a considerably larger range of recorded land maps, are available to the public online here. The Town Clerk’s office will also provide scanned copies of earlier documents by telephone or email request. The information found online is typically sufficient to satisfy most needs during this temporary restriction period.

Individuals who find they still require in-person vault access can call the Bristol Town Clerk’s office for an appointment.  Appointments are now scheduled to allow for a three-day quarantine period after each visit, replacing the previous seven-day waiting period policy.

All visitors will be required to respond to certain health-related questions, wear gloves and masks and sign the waiver of liability attached.

Your patience and cooperation is greatly appreciated during this difficult time.  We sincerely believe that this policy is temporary and look forward to a time when we can return to normal.”


Louis P. Cirillo
Bristol Town Clerk

Administration Economic Development Press Releases

Bristol Awarded $623K Boating Infrastructure Grant for Expansion of Bristol Maritime Center, RIDEM

Media Mentions Press Releases

Bristol’s New Fire Boat is a Floating Hydrant, and an ER, EastBayRI

Administration Police Press Releases

Town Administrator Contente Issues Statement on Peaceful Protests

“Dear Residents of Bristol,

The Town of Bristol’s local government condemns the murder of George Floyd. We believe that positive changes will help bring better understanding and improve our communities.

Bristol Chief of Police Kevin Lynch has met with organizers of a peaceful protest that are planning to meet at Colt State Park tomorrow morning, Saturday, June 6, 2020, at 10:00 AM. The intentions are to walk to Independence Park and stand for change, justice, and peace. The Town of Bristol has coordinated with Local, State, and Federal Departments to ensure that the rights to assemble are protected and that all residents and business owners are safe. The Rhode Island Department of Health will be present during the event to promote guidance on preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Tomorrow’s event is part of the pursuit for change and advancement in living conditions and equality for all. We in Bristol have always supported our Constitutional values, the first of which is the right for freedom of speech and right to assemble. The Town of Bristol will also protect all of our residents’ right to security and safety. It is our hope that our Nation and Town of Bristol will slowly heal and that we will succeed in our efforts to further improve our community.”


Steven Contente
Bristol Town Administrator

COVID-19 Press Releases

HEZ Releases COVID-19 Community Needs Survey

The Bristol Health Equity Zone is seeking input from those with specific knowledge of needs in different sectors of our community, resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, in order to best allocate potential federal funding that Rhode Island is positioned to receive under the CARES Act.

We invite you to take our brief survey with an eye to what you observe in your work/community role(s) so we can better understand immediate needs during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as needs related to future pandemics.

You can access the survey until June 12 by going to:

Please share widely with your colleagues and local contacts.

Thank you for partnering with us for a healthy community!