Archive for July, 2014

What happened to low hanging fruit?

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Way back when Bostonbikes was just getting started, there was talk of a four pronged approach to developing bike infrastructure and pushing along the bike agenda. The one that has been sticking in my head lately was the supposition that the city would continue to go after the ‘low hanging fruit’ when introducing more bike infrastructure.

Well I interpret that as adding bike paint, even if it just be sharrows, whenever a paving project happens. Well that happened a little in Dot, but lately the fruit has been left to rot.

The starkest example of course is Mass Ave from Everett Square to the bridge at South Bay. That was torn up and paved last year. It is a four lane road with dividers at parts and parking along most of it. In other words, PLENTY WIDE ENOUGH FOR BIKE LANES. What did we get? Two new turn lanes and the train station under the bridge. In other words, more dangerous conditions for bike riders.

This summer there’s the irony of the Washington Streets. For those who know history, you may recall the Red Lining that was done during the 1970s for a Federal minority home ownership program that used the Washington Streets as the boarders (Red Lines) to contain the program. Take a look at a map of Boston and ¬†you’ll see how convenient that is and you’ll also see how they mark the edges of the parts of town that suffer from the most neglect and lack of city services. Well this summer there’s no line not a red line.

Washington Street in JP from Egleston to Forest Hills was just paved. Did it get any bike infrastructure? NOPE. It is probably only fit for sharrows, but I can tell you as someone who rides it every day they would be welcome.

Washington Street in Dot from Codman Square to 4 Corners is repaved this week. No lines yet, but no reply from Boston Bikes to e-mails asking about it’s disposition. Wanna bet there will be NO Sharrows there either?

While I rarely ride there and don’t see a lot of value myself, it didn’t go unnoticed that bike lanes were put on Route 203 (Morton Street in JP by Franklin Park) but NO ACCOMODATION at all was included in the recent repaying from Neponset Circle to Washington Street.

Meanwhile we read of efforts to build separated bike lanes and all kinds of wonderful stuff in the parts of town that happened to get bike lanes, sharrows and all kinds of stuff already. I guess as a result the low hanging fruit in the neighborhoods is being left on the ground to rot.

I sound like a broken record no? Then why is it continuing? Our Mayor is from Dot. C’mon Marty kick your staff in the butt and tell them we deserve the same level of services from government as someone in another neighborhood. Jeesh… We thought it would turn, but so far nope. Too bad. Otherwise Marty has been doing a good job.