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Sidewalk on Fairmount Avenue bridge finally plowed - and all it took was a visit to the mayor's office in City Hall

Fairmount Avenue bridge sidewalk in Hyde Park

Before last night's snow

The saga of Hyde Park pedestrians trying to avoid death under the wheels of a truck or something continues. As you may recall, both sidewalks on the Fairmount Avenue bridge over the train tracks and the river went unplowed after the first storm. Then two hero civilians shoveled out one side. Then we got more snow and a snow-plow operator made quite sure (and no doubt unintentionally) that nobody was going to shovel it out again.

Fed up, David Shorr last week went to City Hall, punched 5 in the elevator and walked straight into the mayor's office and asked the sympathetic receptionist for action. And, it turns out, he got some, as you can see in his photo above.

Now all it needs is some salt. Well, and probably some quick shoveling today.

Before:

Fairmount Avenue bridge with snow boulders
Neighborhoods: 

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Comments

I think the mayor could stand to change the way the Hotline deals with sidewalk shoveling. It seems like their current computer system only allows for a code enforcement officer to be sent to a specific house to issue a ticket. When they show up at a property that is the city's responsibility, or the MBTA's, more often than not the ticketing officer closes the ticket -- "not my problem."

I called this morning about a five-block stretch of Hyde Park Ave where the sidewalk is obstructed every few feet, and was told that without house numbers they couldn't enter a ticket. "We can't just send them out to do a canvass," the woman told me. When I said that a canvass was exactly what was needed, and that it was presenting a serious danger (and I could provide the range of cross-streets), she told me she needed a specific address to open the ticket.

That's not very nimble, new tech-savvy city.

(This is all leaving aside my ongoing war with DCR over the ice luge they maintain on Arborway Rd.)

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This.

MANY of the city-owned sidewalks in Jamaica Plain are still un-plowed from the first storm (mostly public gardens and playgrounds, but also traffic islands) in spite of many tickets filed through Citizens Connect.

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I called this morning about a five-block stretch of Hyde Park Ave where the sidewalk is obstructed every few feet,

Cummins Hwy to Southbourne?

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Your experience reveals why we can't have nice things in this city. I walk and run a lot in the southwest neighborhoods, and there still isn't a usable sidewalk network. Why not? Because nobody is responsible for it. I've called, tweeted, and used Citizen's Connect to challenge the city to get out of their cars and walk

  • the length of Blue Hills Ave from Seaver to the Milton line,
  • Hyde Park Ave from Forest Hills to Cleary Square,
  • River Street from Lower Mills to Blue Hills Ave,
  • Washington Street from Forest Hills to Dedham (Except a portion atop Bellevue Hill, this was looking better yesterday)
  • VFW or West Rox Parkways, Centre Street by the Arboretum,

If they bothered, they'd find homeowners and landlords who still haven't shoveled since the first blizzard in January, businesses who plow their parking lots onto the sidewalk, and countless sidewalks abutting public properties that should be maintained by the Parks Department, DCR, or the MBTA that have never been cleared of snow. Sure, ISD may issue a few tickets, but that doesn't create a usable network.

Those aren't neighborhood streets, those are big, central arteries served by multiple bus lines and heavily foot trafficked. The fact that even main arteries remain completely impassable proves that the city only cares about cars.

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by the Arboretum has been cleared after every storm, I think.

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Depends on your definition of "cleared." They run a bobcat down the sidewalk, but the 6+ inches of slushy residue left behind isn't exactly easy to walk in. Then a plow goes down the street and plows half the cleared sidewalk shut again, and we're right back where we started.

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it all that bad, certainly not 6 inches of slush since it's been frozen up until yesterday, maybe this morning there were 2 inches of snow. I think the bobcat does an amazing job given the pile of snow left on the rather narrow sidewalk by the street plows. Better than many of the sidewalks on other streets. You can walk and get where you're going.

And you have the alternative in that area to walk/run on the excellent plowed roads in the Arboretum itself.

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Look, I sympathize with small property owners, so I am hesitant to call them out to the city, but on the other hand, I shouldn't be fearing running mainly because every 5 or 8 properties I have to go out into traffic because even though we haven't had a major storm in 2 weeks, people just don't care about the sidewalks.

I'm willing to forgo the edict that 42 inches need to be cleared, but we need more than 12 inches of slush called a walkway. And yes, those 6 foot piles the plows dumped at the corners should not be the responsibility of Joe Average Man, so the city should step up and take care of that.

In short, I just want it all to go away.

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A riot is an ungly thing... undt, I tink, that it is chust about time ve had vun. 

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....whatever it takes. I know the office was getting daily notices/pics and complaints so maybe David put us over the top...this is the same embattled stretch that Tim and Marco shoveled some weeks back and was plowed in by DPW folks....also, that pic is from yesterday....this morning DPW folks had covered this stretch with three inches of roadway slush (of course, I am certain, was "unintentional")...one step forward, two steps back. Spring will be the ultimate sidewalk clearer.

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