Speak up for better bike and transit connections!
The federal environmental review for the I-90 project is beginning shortly, so this is the last chance to get your comments into the design process. Don’t miss this critical opportunity to influence the future of a massive project in the region! (You can read a detailed explainer on the I-90 project from StreetsblogMass here.)
This Thursday, December 12, is the deadline to submit feedback, which you can do by emailing MassDOT’s Michael O’Dowd at I-90Allston@dot.state.ma.us. Don’t forget to CC us (firstname.lastname@example.org) so we can gauge our impact.
Here are the top priorities we want to see improved in the current plans:
- Add additional rail and bus service to mitigate travel disruptions. Accelerate the construction of the West St station and add more tracks so that trains can run every 15 minutes (a train once an hour is not sufficient!)
- Change the proposed design of the Franklin Street pedestrian bridge to create a safer and better design, especially for cyclists. This major bike route from Lower Allston, Cambridge, and Somerville to Allston Village, Brookline, and beyond, is structurally deficient and includes 4 hairpin turns!
- The People’s Pike — a linear park connecting the Franklin St. Footbridge, West Station, and the new Agganis Way Footbridge — must be included in the project.
Other suggestions you may want to highlight include:
- All new streets built in Beacon Yards should be consistent with the City of Boston’s Complete Streets and Vision Zero policies. (Right now there are several intersections with 5+ lanes of vehicle traffic).
- The construction plan to temporarily route Soldiers Field Road over the Charles River will have significant detrimental impacts on the Charles River for 10+ years. Project planning must include further review of design and construction alternatives to ensure that these environmental impacts are mitigated and reduced to the greatest extent possible.
- MassDOT’s plan for the narrowest section between BU and the Charles River (“the throat”) doesn’t create enough space for walking and biking paths with a row of trees. Keep working on the “throat” section to find a solution that has less severe impacts on the Charles River and creates a better park when construction is done.
- The project’s purpose must include a plan to improve the quality and extent of the Charles River parkland, the storage and treatment of stormwater, the ecological health of the river, and the need to provide human access to the river’s edge.
- Build a new park and multi-use path instead of train storage in the Wadsworth St. neighborhood to serve as a buffer between homes and trains.
- Build new bike/ped connections from Commonwealth Ave. and the BU Bridge as part of the I-90 project.
- Thank you for remaining active participants in this long planning process.