Live From Mass Ave Project Meeting In Arlington

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Hundreds show up for public meeting on this project to transform Mass Ave in East Arlington into a Complete Street. There is organized opposition to bike lanes, wider sidewalks, and other improvements. I’m here representing the interests of bicyclists and myself – I live in Arlington.

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7 Responses to Live From Mass Ave Project Meeting In Arlington

  1. Cat Bryant June 22, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

    Why would anyone oppose wider sidewalks and improvements to the streets? Boggles the mind that people would like to use Mass Ave as a drag strip. Bicycle lanes and wider sidewalks would prevent that.

  2. janice June 23, 2010 at 7:01 am #

    i was discussing this with a customer of mine who lives in East Arlington and is opposed to bike lanes and wider sidewalks, he said “a lot of people are against it” and said something about how slowing down the street would lead to more congestion and cut-through on side streets, and more back up from alewife brook parkway.

  3. Shane June 23, 2010 at 9:52 am #

    janice, I have heard the same thing. But it looks like the traffic studies indicate the road is already over capacity…

  4. Charlie June 23, 2010 at 9:56 am #

    That’s very interesting Janice. However, it is of course flawed logic. The traffic signals will always be the biggest factor for how many cars can travel down Mass Ave at any given time. It really doesn’t matter if one goes 20 mph or 40 mph between the signals, because one will inevitably catch up at a red light. And the traffic engineers working on the project are ensuring that the intersections will adequately handle the traffic volumes that are there today.

    Just look at how overall travel time between a car and bike compares. Bikes are often just as fast as cars on Mass Ave because the bikes just catch up to the cars at the red lights.

    Overall, I think there is just a group of people who is afraid of change and afraid that THEIR commute is going to be messed up. I can understand being concerned, but to deny pedestrians and bicyclists (and motorists) a safer, more attractive, and pleasant street just seems very selfish.

  5. JJJ June 24, 2010 at 1:24 pm #

    I wish I could have gone. I live in Lexington, but that area is one of my options into the city.

    What was the result of the meeting?

  6. David June 25, 2010 at 6:01 pm #

    @JJJ: Check out my report from the meeting here.

  7. Wogga September 26, 2011 at 10:42 am #

    I just returned to Boston from Boulder and Colorado. The approach that works there – and in other great bike/car cities like Portland and Amsterdam is always creating a bike lane. Looking through the MassBike website one sees situations of bikes and cars getting into trouble when the two are mixed. Far better to give the 4000 lb and the 40 lb ther own lanes, when possible, such as on Mass Ave.