One less Avenue de One Way downtown

New two-way Avenue de Lafayette

The change caught some drivers unaware, and, yes, they got tickets. Photo by Sarah K.

Boston Police alert us that Avenue de Lafaytte is now a two-way street between Chauncy and Harrison Avenue Extension:

New traffic signal equipment, signs and pavement markings will be in place to help drivers to navigate the new traffic pattern. The change is expected to reduce the number of vehicles that inadvertently enter the Downtown Crossing pedestrian only zone, and provide easier access from Downtown Crossing to the highway system, the Greenway and Chauncy Street.

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This rules.

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This rules.

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Indeed!

Now, instead of using the no car zone in the morning when I bike to work, I'll just cut down behind and use Chauncey St. to cut over to Summer. I'd have done that this morning if I had known!

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Be on the lookout for those

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Be on the lookout for those Jordan Marsh trailers going into their tunnel there Swirls !

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Wasnt it always two-way?

I remember it being two-way, and Google Maps says its two-way. The only place it's not two way is at Kingston St, where heavy construction would be needed to make that a two-way due to street geometry.

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nope.

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Nope. It was indeed one-way westbound, but for a very short area (maybe 150 feet?) between the Lafayette Garage entrance and Chauncy Street - right where the post office is located. Google maps is still showing it as one-way for me. It was one-way and had taxi loading in front of the hotel, parking in front of the post office, and one travel lane. They must have removed parking and/or the taxi stand.

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I swear it was two way in the late 90s.

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I have a memory of taking a left turn on chauncy off Lafayette and heading downtown. Perhaps it was late at nite after too much cold tea.

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Because at

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The end of the street you can only turn right towards the Downtown Crossing pedestrian only zone.

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Difficult to describe in text

The problem is that, when the street goes one-way, people divert and then don't know where they should turn to avoid the restricted area.

You kind of have to walk or bike through there to appreciate how that happens.

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That picture is funny because

That picture is funny because half the cars are parked to the right (correct position for when the street was one-way) and half are parked the other way (correct position for the current two-way). Was it taken right after the street was officially turned 2-way? For reference, I believe that building is the post office.

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If they want to keep people

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If they want to keep people from ending up in the pedestrian zone by mistake, they *need* to replace the missing sign that used to tell drivers on Washington to turn right on Essex to continue to the Government Center area. It used to be here, but it's been missing for a few years. http://goo.gl/maps/Hfjlt

Washington has always been Boston's main street, and the street pattern reflects that. So without that sign, there's no way northbound drivers would know they're heading into a big dead end maze. At least the new two-way section of De Lafayette provides a second way out, but without a sign at that corner, it won't be much help either.

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Washington Street

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The whole idea of closing Washington Street off to traffic and turning it into ""Downtown Crossing" in the late 70s was a flawed idea from the very beginning. Trying to turn Boston's downtown main street into some sort of approximation of a suburban pedestrian mall. We all see how well THAT turned out.

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We do indeed see how it

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We do indeed see how it turned out.

Faneuil hall is one of the msot popular attractions in the country.

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Which goes to show

That when it still LOOKS like a street, people treat it as a street. Faneuil Hall is not a street, and people feel welcomed and meander about.

Of course, that's not the only thing working against DTX, but it plays a part.

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