Last night the Boston Transportation Department (BTD) held an Open House to present the final design of the Beacon Street protected bike lane!
While the changes to Beacon Street can’t happen soon enough, we’re excited to see that BTD heeded our calls to carry the protected bike lane all the way to Mass Ave, rather than having a mixing-zone at the intersection of Beacon Street and Mass Ave that would have created unnecessary conflicts between people biking and people driving.
You can see the final design to the right, with the protected bike lane going all the way to Mass Ave, and the previously proposed mixing-zone in the image below.
The intersections along Beacon Street will also be made safer for people walking, using Lead Pedestrian Intervals (walk lights that come on before cars get the green) and Automatic Pedestrian Recall (walk lights that come on without people having to push a button.)
Moreover, reducing Beacon Street from 3 wide travel lanes to 2 narrower lanes will help address the issue of speeding, which has been prevalent on Beacon Street for decades, and has contributed to a number of fatal crashes involving drivers hitting people in cross walks and on side walks.
As the chart below shows, reducing the number of travel lanes will not have an adverse effect on motor vehicle traffic, as two travel lanes are more than enough to carry the volume of motor vehicle traffic on Beacon Street.
We’d like to thank everyone in the Boston Transportation Department for working so hard to make this project happen! It’s a major step in the right direction, and a change that is worth celebrating.
From here we’ll be working to get protected bike lanes all the way around the Public Garden and on Charles Street in Beacon Hill, and make sure that the protected bike lanes connect to each other and the Paul Dudley White Bike Path along the Charles River, so that people of all ages and abilities can bike around Boston without having to mix with high-speed motor vehicle traffic.
You can check out the plans for the corridor here.