Starting last week and going until August 14th, the BU Bridge and parts of Comm Ave are closed to motor vehicle traffic while MassDOT replaces the Comm Ave Bridge over the Mass Pike. The good news is that bikes will still have access to the BU Bridge and Comm Ave for the duration of the project! In fact, some people have already made the most of the car-free BU Bridge by having a picnic on it.
For those who bike over the BU Bridge on a regular basis, you’ll remember the condition that Comm Ave was in, with pot holes the size of wheels that would sometimes allow you to see down to the Mass Pike. Thankfully those days are behind us, and the future looks smooth!
The next two weeks will be particularly interesting as the shutdown of such a major intersection (and crossing of the Charles River), brought predictions of carmageddon. However, the start of the project has been rather uneventful.
In fact, the project has already created some benefits for people biking. In an effort to get more people to ride, Hubway is stocking the stations along Comm Ave with extra bikes, and between now and August 14th, Hubway users can take advantage of a $1 fare special by downloading the new Hubway app!
St. Mary’s Street has also been made 2-way, allowing people on bikes to legally ride northbound from Mountfort Street to Comm Ave. Before this project began, St. Mary’s Street was one-way going southbound, but many people on bikes rode against traffic in order to avoid the chaotic and often dangerous Carlton Street. Just be careful going northbound on St. Mary’s, as there is one blind driveway mid-block. To address this, MassDOT has installed a mirror that allows people biking to see vehicles coming out of the driveway.
Below is a detour map for people walking and biking through this area.
In related news, the protected bike lanes scheduled for installation between Packard’s Corner and the BU Bridge along Comm Ave (as part of a separate project) are now under construction! Ride down to Packard’s Corner while enjoying a car-free Comm Ave and check it out!