Alrighty, the 57! I’d personally consider this one the “main” North Providence route. Sure, the 27 and 56 are more frequent, and the 58 is a passthrough, but I think this one deserves the honor. Let’s see why.
The best way to describe the route is short, sweet, and to the point. It’s quite literally a straight shot down Smith Street to downtown Providence. Among the sights you’ll see on the route? Primarily residential neighborhoods. There’s also sights like North Providence City Hall and its connection to the Beach Bus. Apparently also in the residential neighborhoods of North Providence is a park & ride lot at Turcone Street. La Salle Academy is also along the route (don’t ask my opinion on La Salle students/alumni). Further down towards the end of Smith Street, it gets denser. Eventually, the route passes Chalkstone Avenue and the interstate. Lastly, it passes by the State House, the train station’s north side, and Providence Place Mall before pulling into Kennedy Plaza.
The good: It’s a straight shot from North Providence’s town center to downtown Providence! For ridership, it’s also among the more-used RIPTA routes, with 877 daily riders as of 2019. Furthermore, the headways make sense, clocking in at every half-hour, and hourly on weekday nights. It also connects to the train station, which is also a nice thing.
The bad: …not much. I guess sometimes the weekend frequency (hourly on Sundays) might be cumbersome? But even then, that’s not a dealbreaker.
Nearby points of interest: Centerdale! Also, the train station and various shops along Smith Street. There’s also the front door to the state house and Providence Place Mall!
Overall, it’s largely a straight shot. Among the most direct routes in all of RIPTA, with little in the way of flaws. And, for that, I’d have to give it a…