West Rox Walks Letter to BTD re Centre and Spring Streets

Our friends and fellow travelers at West Rox Walks recently completed a Walk Audit documenting pedestrian safety concerns in the neighborhood, particularly along the Centre Street Corridor. To further their efforts to make West Roxbury a more walkable neighborhood, they recently sent a letter to Chris Osgood, the Chief of the Streets, Transportation, and Sanitation for the City of Boston, seeking a major street redesign that would consider safety for all street users. WalkUP Roslindale proudly joined this letter, as did many other Boston-area organizations that promote walkability as well as pedestrian and bicycle safety. The full letter is reproduced below.


image

June 7, 2019

By Electronic Mail Only (chris.osgood@nullboston.gov)
Boston Transportation Department
1 City Hall Square, Room 721
Boston, MA 02201-2043

Attention: Chris Osgood, Chief of the Streets, Transportation, and Sanitation

Dear Mr. Osgood:

In 2018, the United States saw the largest number of pedestrians killed (6,227) in motor vehicle crashes in nearly 30 years. West Roxbury residents have experienced this trend firsthand with, in aggregate, one car crash every six weeks involving a person walking or riding a bicycle on Centre and Spring Streets over the past four years. Notably, these incidents include two serious crashes involving pedestrians walking across Centre Street at the intersection with Hastings Street. The crashes resulted in one severe traumatic brain injury in November 2015 and one fatality inFebruary 2019. Additionally, there have been 11 car crashes with cyclists.

These safety concerns were also reported by West Roxbury Main Streets in their 2016 Imagine West Roxbury Report. A survey of 702 residents found that nearly 3 in 4 respondents identified the street design as a major barrier to walkability and access to local businesses, and nearly 200 residents requested improvements to cyclist and pedestrian safety, traffic calming, and better parking. We are writing to request your support for the Go Boston 2030 top priority project to create walk- and bike-friendly main streets via the following changes to Centre and Spring Streets in West Roxbury: 1) traffic lane reduction, 2) improved crosswalks, and 3) addition of protected bicycle lanes.

A “road diet” on Centre and Spring Streets would help decrease motor vehicle travel speeds to posted speed limits, which significantly reduces the risk of severe injury to pedestrians struck by vehicles and would likely decrease crosswalk fatalities. Crosswalk improvements recommended include: high-visibility crosswalk markings, parking restrictions on crosswalk approach, adequate nighttime lighting, advance yield here to and stop signs, curb extensions, and pedestrian hybrid beacons. Finally, Better Bike Lanes would increase access to the Main Streets district, improve safety for all, and are widely supported by over 80% of local businesses.

We eagerly await the proposal of a major street redesign, which includes safety for all street users, at the upcoming meeting on June 20, 2019.

Sincerely,

William Vincent, West Rox Walks
Jacob Robinson, West Roxbury Main Streets
Ben Wetherill, West Roxbury Bicycle Chapter
Brendan Kearney, WalkBoston
Matthew Lawlor, WalkUP Roslindale
Becca Wolfson, Boston Cyclists Union
Rachel Poliner, Progressive WRox/Roz
Ambar Johnson, Liveable Streets
Alan Wright, RozzieBikes

Copy to:

Gregory Rooney, Commissioner, Property Management
Jack Duggan, Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services
Matt O’Malley, District 6 City Councilor
Michelle Wu, At-Large City Councilor
Althea Garrison, At-Large City Councilor
Michael F. Flaherty, At-Large City Councilor
Annissa Essaibi-George, At-Large City Councilor

West Roxbury Walk Audit Complete

West Roxbury Walk Audit Route

Hot off the presses, our friends over at West Rox Walks just released the results of the first ever Walk Roxbury Walk Audit, highlighting aspects of Centre Street most in need of pedestrian safety improvements. We welcome our neighbors to the walkability club. Many who live in Roslindale work and shop and West Roxbury, and vice-versa, and thus we care deeply about improving walking conditions there. Be sure to follow West Rox Walks on Twitter and like them on Facebook.

The report’s key recommendations are 1) decrease the speed of vehicular traffic, 2) improve crosswalk safety, 3) add protected bike lanes, and 4) conduct studies of the business section between Knoll and Weld Streets and of the rotary by Holy Name. Stay tuned for next steps!

Next up next door – West Roxbury Walk Audit

We organized a Roslindale Square Walk Audit back in December 2016; published a report in February 2017; and took a productive tour of the area with city officials in April 2017 (more news soon about new positive developments resulting from that tour). Now our good neighbors to the west1 are taking up the torch and have organized a walk audit for this coming Sunday. Specifically, West Roxbury Main Streets with support from a variety of partners are meeting at 2pm, this Sunday, June 11, 2017, at the Roche Brothers parking lot next to Starbucks, to identify pedestrian safety issues in the neighborhood. Bring your best walking shoes, friends, baby stroller and dog! The event will include a discussion and survey on traffic, safety, and making the main street district more attractive. Contact West Roxbury Main Streets at 617-325-6400 for more info.

Please spread the word and share this PDF flyer for the event.

  1. You’re welcome to refer to the neighborhood in question as “Greater Roslindale”

Roslindale Square Walk Audit – Hot off the Presses

WalkBoston Walk Audit HeaderWe’re pleased to publish the report documenting the Walk Audit of Roslindale Square that we did with WalkBoston back in December. There are lots of issues to be addressed, but also exciting opportunities to improve the pedestrian environment in and around the central business district. Our next steps will be to set up meetings with the appropriate city officials and elected leaders to begin to address the highest priority items. If you have any thoughts about the report or what our top priorities should be, please leave them in the comments below.

Walk Audit Complete

This past weekend, an intrepid group of about two dozen Roslindale walkers itemized the many ways in which the square’s pedestrian environment should be improved, with the help of our friends at WalkBoston. The event was a great success. Stay tuned for a full report and action plan in the coming weeks. In the meantime, please check out this slideshow that was presented to the group before the walk in the 2 Belgrade Ave (former Select Cafe) space; also see WalkBoston’s latest e-news bulletin for their report on the audit. The bulletin also includes lots of other useful information, so be sure to subscribe if you haven’t already.

Walk Audit Group
Some of the Rozzie Square Walk Audit participants gathered in Select Cafe space

Join Us for Rozzie Square “Walk Audit” December 5, 2015 at 9am at 2 Belgrade Avenue

Would you like to help improve the pedestrian environment around Roslindale Square?

We’re doing a “Walk Audit” foot tour with the help of WalkBoston to identify the most pressing issues with sidewalks, intersections, traffic signals, and crosswalks, so we
can bring them to the attention of the right City departments and GET THEM FIXED!

WHEN: Saturday, December 5, 2015 9am‐11am
WHERE: Starting inside 2 Belgrade Ave
(a/k/a the former “Select Café” and “Emack and Bolio’s”)
WHY: Because a walkable community is a healthy community.

RSVP to info@nullwalkuproslindale.org or on the Facebook event page or on the Nextdoor event page.

Please check out our full-page flyer and tear-off flyer for this event. Feel free to post widely.

Stay tuned here for any last minute weather announcements.