Just a reminder that WalkUP Roslindale members Alan Wright and Matt Lawlor will be leading a ride/walk along the approximate route of the proposed Arboretum Gateway Path this coming Friday, June 24, 2016 starting at 4 pm at the Forest Hills entrance to the existing Blackwell Path. The ride/walk is part of MAPC’s LandLine summer rides. More info can be found here. We would love to see a strong turnout for this event!
We are delighted to make public today a nearly-100 page report created by Tufts UEP students Jaissa Feliz, Liz Pongratz, Alexandra Purdy, and Mason Wells. The report culminates several months of collaboration between Tufts UEP, Livable Streets, WalkUP Roslindale, and many individuals and organizations in and around Roslindale. The executive summary is reproduced below; be sure to check out the whole report for data, images, and other key details. We believe this document will be invaluable in moving the project to implementation, and are grateful to the Tufts students for their hard work, insight, and commitment to this effort. Please spread the word.
Tonight’s Roslindale Gateway Path Visioning session was a smashing success. The turnout was extraordinary, filling the large double-room meeting space in the Roslindale Community Center just about to capacity. In addition to many people who live, work, and play in Roslindale and adjacent neighborhoods (including notably JP and West Roxbury), several city councilors, state legislators, and state agencies (including the MBTA and MassDOT) sent representatives who actively participated in the event. The meeting reflected tremendous energy and enthusiasm for the project, and sparked many new ideas and concepts that we and our collaborators at Tufts and the Livable Streets Alliance will be synthesizing over the coming weeks.
In case you weren’t able to make it, here is the presentation that kicked off the event, but most of the 90 minute meeting was spent gathering community input in small groups. Stay tuned for more news at our path page and send any additional comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, a snapshot from the beginning of the meeting, as people were still streaming in:
And now that we’ve had the world premier at tonight’s session, a special feature: drone footage of the first segment of the proposed route, starting at the Roslindale Village Commuter Rail station. Thanks to Larry McInnes for shooting, directing, and cinematography, and Alan Wright for starring in this motion picture:
Finally, the event was well covered on social media. Sampling of recent tweets below.
Finally, an after-event photo of many of the organizers, presenters, facilitators, along with some WalkUP Roslindale Steering Committee members:
The latest Roslindale Bulletin features an article by Jeff Sullivan on the Arboretum Gateway Path initiative, including interviews with several WalkUP Roslindale members and allies from RozzieBikes and LivableStreets Alliance. Check out the article, and be sure to RSVP for our upcoming vision session on March 30 at 6:30pm at the Roslindale Community Center and respond to our survey about the path project.
Update 4/16/16: the survey is now over; keep an eye on http://walkuproslindale.org/gateway for news.
In advance of the upcoming visioning session for the Arboretum Gateway Path, we and our partners in the Tufts Urban Environmental Policy Planning program are conducting a survey to better understand the needs of the community. Please complete the survey and spread the word to your neighbors!
Also hot off the presses, check out these posters for the upcoming event:
Momentum is growing for the Arboretum Gateway Path, which would create a new entrance to the Arboretum near the Roslindale Square Commuter Rail station, creating access to the park right from the business district (and avoiding the steep incline for the existing entrances), and also providing a shorter “straight shot” multi-use path from Roslindale Square to Forest Hills. To learn more and contribute your own ideas, please join us for a community visioning workshop organized by our community partners at Tufts University, 6:30pm, Wednesday, March 30th at the Roslindale Community Center (6 Cummins Highway). RSVP and more details here.
Update 3/7/16 – hot off the presses, check out these posters for this event:
I have fielded more than one note that I left the Arboretum Gateway Path off the top-of-mind list for WUR’s 2015 roundup. This is an accurate critique and so: mea culpa. The AGP was a major initiative in 2015 and, I strongly suspect, will be a major initiative this year and going forward until it’s done. In brief: We love this idea of a new Arboretum gateway and path at the Roslindale commuter rail station that would provide an alternate ped/bike path to the South/Archdale bridge area, where it would link to an extension of the existing Blackwell/Bussey Brook path (and on to Forest Hills and the Southwest Corridor path) and allow for a new, more welcoming entrance to the Arboretum at Archdale as well. We are furthermore delighted at the receptive potential partners we’ve found in our own City and State government, the Arnold Arboretum, the Arboretum Park Conservancy, RVMS, Livable Streets, and our friends at Tufts University’s environmental program who are currently conducting an initial feasibility analysis for the path. It’s also been a great way to connect early with our friends at Rozzie Bikes.
So — as we head into 2016, expect the Arboretum Gateway Path to be something we continue to talk about and organize around, a lot.
As part of our effort to spread the word and gather more support for the Arboretum Gateway Path concept, I was excited to have the opportunity to do a 7 minute presentation at LivableStreets Alliance’s 10-in-1 Street Talk last Wednesday night at the Old South Meeting House downtown. This is the 10th anniversary for these talks, and they’re a great way to connect with folks who have similar interests and advocating for making our streets and public places better and safer for everyone. LivableStreets has posted some photos from the event on their facebook page. I’ll share the video of the whole thing as soon as I see it posted in a public forum, but I was most struck during the evening by the presentation from Mark Chase of Somerville Neighborways. You should check out the images on the website, especially the concept of stressing the importance and local ownership of key intersections with resident-organized and applied graphics painted directly on the pavement. Pretty impressive and something that we should look into doing here in Roslindale – I have my own thoughts on where, and I’m sure others in our neighborhood do as well.
The evening got off to a great start with the semi-surprise of the Mayor’s announcement of the city’s Vision Zero Action Plan in a short video, which was followed by reinforcing remarks from BTD Commissioner Gina Fiandaca. Chief of Streets Chris Osgood was also personally in attendance to emphasize the importance of the announcement. The whole action plan is worth looking at and taking part in as it moves forward. But I would say that among the most interesting and important early action items is the institution of neighborhood slow speed zones in the Talbot-Norfolk triangle near Codman Square in Dorchester and between Washington Street and Franklin Park in Jamaica Plain’s Stonybrook section. My own understanding is that this is mainly a matter of lowering the speed limit from 30 to 20 mph and highlighting that fact with signage and enhanced crosswalk treatments and related measures. Bottom line: The pilots are a great idea, long past due, yet fundamentally every residential area in the city should get the same treatment, as soon as the city can get the standard package set next spring and summer through the pilots and then roll them out. The data on vehicle speed vs. fatality rates for pedestrians are uniform on pointing to the shift from 30 to 20 pm as being absolutely essential. If we can get actual vehicle speeds to that lower level on our neighborhood streets, we will have accomplished something of real and lasting value.