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City of Providence

  •   State: 
    Rhode Island
    Providence County
      County FIPS: 
    41°49′25″N 71°25′20″W
      Area total: 
    20.58 sq mi
      Area land: 
    18.41 sq mi (47.67 km²)
      Area water: 
    2.18 sq mi (5.64 km²)
    10 ft (3 m)
    1636; Settled 1636; Incorporated (city) November 5, 1832
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    Providence-Warwick, RI-MA
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    10,373.47 residents per square mile of area (4,005.25/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

Providence is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Rhode Island. One of the oldest cities in New England, it was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams, a Reformed Baptist theologian and religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The city developed as a busy port as it is situated at the mouth of the Providence River in Providence County, at the head of Narragansett Bay. In 1652, Providence prohibited African and African American slavery for periods of longer than 10 years, though there is no evidence the prohibition was ever enforced. Providence residents were among the first Patriots to spill blood in the lead-up to the American Revolutionary War during the Gaspee Affair of 1772. Rhode Island was the first of the Thirteen Colonies to renounce its allegiance to the British Crown on May 4, 1776. At the start of the 20th century, Providence hosted some of the largest manufacturing plants in the country, including Brown & Sharpe, Nicholson File, and Gorham Manufacturing Company. Today, the city of Providence is home to eight hospitals and eight institutions of higher learning which have shifted the city's economy into service industries, though it still retains some manufacturing activity. The population of the city is 190,934, making it the third-most-populous city in NewEngland after Boston and Worcester, Massachusetts. It was the last of theThirteen States to ratify the United States Constitution on May 29, 1790, once assurances were made that a Bill of Rights would become part of the Constitution.


Providence is the primary city name, but also Cranston are acceptable city names or spellings. The official name is City of Providence. Providence was settled in June 1636 by Puritan theologian Roger Williams and grew into one of the original Thirteen Colonies. In 1652, Providence prohibited African and African American slavery for periods of longer than 10 years. Providence residents were among the first Patriots to spill blood in the lead-up to the American Revolutionary War during the Gaspee Affair of 1772. In 1770, Brown University moved to Providence from nearby Warren. By the start of the 20th century, Providence hosted some of the largest manufacturing plants in the country, including Brown & Sharpe, Nicholson File, and Gorham Manufacturing Company. The city began to see a decline by the mid-1920s as manufacturing industries began to shut down. In the 1960s, jewelry trade magazines referred to Providence as the jewelry capital of the world. Hard Scrabble and Snow Towntwo African American neighborhoods in the citywere the sites of race riots in 1824 and 1831. Providence thrived after the war, and waves of immigrants brought the population from 54,595 in 1865 to 175,597 by 1900. It was also the last of the Thirteen States to ratify the United States Constitution on May 29, 1790, once assurances were made that a Bill of Rights would become part of the Constitution. In 1845, the City Council resolved to create a permanent municipal building in 1845. The seat of city government was located in the Market House in Market Square from 1832 to 1878, which was the geographic and social center of the city.


Providence is located at the head of Narragansett Bay, with the Providence River running into the bay through the center of the city. The city is among the most densely populated cities in the country and boasts the eighth-highest percentage of pedestrian commuters. As with many cities worldwide, the Northeastern megacity has a large population of feral pigeons (Columba livia). Although expecting Providence's population genetics to be continuous with the larger megacity, Carlen & Munshi-South 2020 find Providence and Boston share one population and the rest of the region shares another. Providence has 25 official neighborhoods, though these neighborhoods are often grouped together and referred to collectively as the East Side, West Side, North End, South Side, and West End. The Jewelry District describes the area enclosed by I-95, the old I-195, and the Rhode Island Turnpike. The South Side (or South Providence) consists of the neighborhoods of Elmwood, Lower South Providence, Upper South Providence and Washington Park. The West End overlaps with the southern half of Federal Hill and the northern part of the West End, and is an officially recognized neighborhood with its own association. This part of Downtown is characterized by open spaces, wide roads, and wide streetscape of much of the historic downtown has retained a similar appearance since the early 20th century. Many of the state's tallest buildings are found here. The Russian Submarine Museum was located here until the 1938 Hurricane Carol and is also the historic home of Providence Biltmore Tower.


As of the 2000 U.S. census, Providence's population consisted of 173,618 people, 162,389 households, and 35,859 families. The city has one of the highest rates of poverty in the nation with 29.1% of the population and 23.9% of families living below the poverty line. In 2019, the city experienced 18 murders, up from the prior year's 18 murders. Violent crime in the city is highly specific, with the vast majority of murders taking place in the poorer sections of Providence such as Olneyville, West End, and Upper and Lower South Providence. The Providence metropolitan area includes Providence, Fall River, Massachusetts, and Warwick, and is estimated to have a population of 1,622,520. In 2006, this area was officially added to the Boston Combined Statistical Area (CSA), the sixth-largest CSA in the country. Providence has had a substantial Italian American population since the start of the 20th century, with 14% of. the population claiming Italian ancestry. The majority of Hispanics in Providence are of Dominican descent, constituting roughly half of the city's Hispanic population. The Dominican community is the fifth largest in the United States. The median income for a family in Providence was $32,058, Providence has a considerable community of immigrants from various Portuguese-speaking countries, especially Portugal, Brazil, and Cape Verde. Portuguese is the city’s third-largest European ethnicity, after Italian and Irish.


As the capital of Rhode Island, the city's economy additionally consists of government services, with approximately 70,000 jobs. The unemployment rate in the city is 5.0% as of August 2022, compared to a national rate of 3.8%.Prominent companies headquartered in Providence include Fortune 500 Textron, an advanced technologies industrial conglomerate; United Natural Foods, a distributor of natural and organic foods; Fortune 1000 Nortek Incorporated; Gilbane, a construction and real estate company. Providence is the site of a sectional center facility (SCF), a regional hub for the U.S. Postal Service. It is also home to some of toy manufacturer Hasbro's business operations, although their headquarters are in Pawtucket. The city is home to the Rhode Island Convention Center, which opened in December 1993. Along with a hotel, the convention center is connected to the Providence Place Mall, a major retail center, through a skywalk. It also has a bank, Virgin Pulse, Ørsted US Offshore Wind, and Providence Equity. It has a population of 1.2 million. The population of Providence was 1.3 million in the year 2000, and is expected to reach 1.4 million by the end of the decade. It was the first city in the United States to become a member of the European Union in 2004. It became the first state to join the European Economic Community in 2007. The state's population is now 1.5 million, and it is expected that it will reach 2 million by 2020.

Arts and culture

Providence has several ethnic neighborhoods, notably Federal Hill and the North End (Italian), Fox Point (Portuguese), West End (mainly Central American and Asian), and Smith Hill (Irish) There are also many dedicated community organizations and arts associations located in the city. The city's underground music is centered on artist-run spaces such as the now-defunct Fort Thunder and is known in underground music circles. Providence is home to a 1,200-acre (4.9 km²) park system. As one of the first cities in America, Providence contains many historic buildings, while the East Side neighborhood in particular includes the largest contiguous area of buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the U.S., with many pre-revolutionary houses. Edgar Allan Poe frequented the library, and met and courted Sarah Helen Whitman there. H. P. Lovecraft was also a regular patron. The Westminster Arcade is the oldest enclosed shopping center in the United States. The Providence Athenæum contains the 20th-largest collection in the Rhode Island School of Design Museum. The Big Blue Bug, the world's largest termite and roadside attraction, stands adjacent to the city's famous Planetarium of Natural History and the Roger Williams National Memorial. Providence also shares Rhode Island's affinity for coffee, with the most coffee and doughnut shops per capita of any city in the country. The rate of reported gay and lesbian relationships is 75% higher than the national average, Former mayor David Cicilline won his election running as an openly gay man.


Providence is home to the Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League. The city's defunct baseball team, the Providence Grays, competed in the National League from 1879 through 1885. Providence has also hosted the alternative sports event Gravity Games from 1999 to 2001, and was also the first host of ESPN's X Games, known in its first edition as the Extreme Games. The New England Patriots and MLS's New England Revolution play in Foxborough, Massachusetts, which is situated halfway between Providence and Boston. Providence was formerly home to two major league franchises: the NFL's Providence Steam Roller in the 1920s and 1930s, and the NBA's ProvidenceSteamrollers in the 1940s. The Rhode Island Auditorium also hosted 29 of the 49 boxing fights of Rocky Marciano. The Providence Mob Squad, the Sakonnet River Roller Rats, the Old Money Honeys and the Rhode Island Riveters are the city's roller derby league. Until 2020, Providence was the headquarters for the American Athletic Conference (The American). The city was also host to the first edition of the X Games in 1995, which was held in the Providence Civic Center. It currently has four roller derby teams: the Providence mob squad, the New England Mob Squad and the Providence Riveter's Roller Dolls, as well as the Providence Gangsters and Rhode Island Gangster's Roller Darts. It is also home to Brown University and Providence College, both of which are NCAA Division I athletic teams. In 1914, after the Boston Red Sox purchased Babe Ruth from the Baltimore Orioles, the team prepared Ruth for the major leagues by sending him to finish the season playing for a minor league team in Providence.


The Providence City Council consists of 15 councilors, one for each of the city's wards, who enact ordinances and pass an annual budget. Providence uses a strong-mayor form of government in which the city council acts as a check against the power of the executive branch, the mayor. City Council members are elected to four-year terms and are limited, by City Charter, to serving a maximum of three consecutive full terms. As the state capital, Providence houses the Rhode Island General Assembly, as well as the offices of the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor. Providence also has probate and superior courts. The U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island is located downtown across from Providence City Hall adjacent to Kennedy Plaza. The city council is made up of members elected by residents of the fifteen wards of Providence. The mayor of Providence is the mayor of the town of Providence, which has a population of 1.2 million. The council is composed of members of the wards of the mayor, who are elected by the residents of Providence to serve a four year term. The City Council has a budget of $1.5 million, and the mayor has a salary of $100,000. Providence is home to the National Museum of American History and Culture, which is housed in the Providence Museum of History and Art, which dates back to the 17th century. It is the only museum in the United States to be named after a city. The museum is located in downtown Providence and is open to the public.


The main campuses of five of Rhode Island's colleges and universities are in Providence. The number of post-secondary students is between 32,000 and 44,000. Higher education exerts a considerable presence in the city's politics and economy. The Providence Public School District serves about 21,000 students from pre-Kindergarten to grade 12. The overall graduation rate as of 2019 is 73.6%, which is slightly below the statewide rate of 84% and the national average of 86%. There are two separate centers for students with special needs. The city's South Side houses Community Preparatory School, a private school serving primarily low-income students in grades 38 to 38. There are several private schools in the East Side, including Moses Brown, the Lincoln School, and the Wheeler School. La Salle Academy, a Catholic college preparatory school, is located in the North End, near Providence College. The public charter schools Time Squared Academy High School (K12) and Textron Chamber of Commerce (912) are funded by GTECH Corporation and Textton respectively. The district has 21 elementary schools, seven middle schools, and nine high schools. The school district features magnet schools at the middle and high school level, Nathanael Greene and Classical respectively. It also has a local Jewish school, Providence Hebrew Day School (1946) The city is home to the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), which is the state's oldest public college. The state's second-largest employer is Brown University, which is based in Providence, Rhode Island.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island = 30.4. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 53. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 10. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in Providence = 3.5 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 1,458 individuals with a median age of 30.2 age the population dropped by -1.04% in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 10,373.47 residents per square mile of area (4,005.25/km²). There are average 2.61 people per household in the 60,672 households with an average household income of $33,131 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is 14.50% of the available work force and has dropped -3.95% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 17.60%. The number of physicians in Providence per 100,000 population = 277.


The annual rainfall in Providence = 44.9 inches and the annual snowfall = 35.4 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 124. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 200. 82 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 20.5 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 51, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island which are owned by the occupant = 31.02%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 63 years with median home cost = $238,190 and home appreciation of -12.82%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $19.05 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $7,671 per student. There are 14.6 students for each teacher in the school, 840 students for each Librarian and 406 students for each Counselor. 4.61% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 12.84% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 10.83% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Providence's population in Providence County, Rhode Island of 1,277 residents in 1900 has increased 1,14-fold to 1,458 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 51.71% female residents and 48.29% male residents live in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island.

    As of 2020 in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island are married and the remaining 60.96% are single population.

  • 22.3 minutes is the average time that residents in Providence require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    60.67% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 15.85% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 7.37% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 2.40% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island, 31.02% are owner-occupied homes, another 59.92% are rented apartments, and the remaining 9.05% are vacant.

  • The 59.20% of the population in Providence, Providence County, Rhode Island who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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