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State proposes making intersection near Jamaica Pond friendlier to pedestrians, bicyclists

Clayton Harper provides an overview of the changes DCR is proposing for the intersection of Parkman Drive and Perkins Street on the northern side of Jamaica Pond, such as installing traffic lights and new paths and narrowing the roads on either side of the intersection to force drivers to slow down.

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Comments

of the pond if people used the existing crosswalks. The short section between Moraine and Perkins is a favorite for death wish jay walking. Yes, that's you with your puppy and you with the soccer ball and toddler in tow.

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- I'm not sure a traffic light is really needed. People generally take turns in the morning and people going left at the end of Frances Parkman are generally able to get in.

- It's hard to tell, but it seems like maybe they removed the parking along Perkins, next to the pond. A lot of people use that parking. That would be a shame to lose that.

- The dangerous place for bikes is heading west on Perkins as you pass Parkman. Cars tend to invade the bike lane to get past cars waiting to turn left onto Parkman. I've seen many accidents there and always feel unsafe for about 20 feet if cars are coming behind me.

Bottom line: I'm glad someone is looking at this, but I hope they are able to keep the parking and don't cause worse traffic jams in the morning by adding the light.

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a few thoughts.

1) If they do this wrong, what is going to happen is that more and more people will drive past Lady of Cedars and just come down the hill, which I'm sure will then lead to complaints up there.
2) turning left on Perkins in the evening is tough as the main flow of traffic doesn't have to stop like it does when it gets backed up going inbound in the morning.
3) the lack of any crosswalk or guardrail break to allow pedestrian to easily get over to the big patch of grass in front of the memorial is wasted opportunity so hopefully they fix that.
4) parking on Perkins is good for general access as well as specifically for stuff like JP soccer. Hope they keep it.

I wonder what the time frame is on this. I recall there were meetings last year about fixing the Walter/Centre St intersection by the Hebrew Rehab Center in Roslindale (or I guess West Roxbury?) but I don't think there's any funding for it any time soon.

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That parking is horribly abused for long term car storage. It needs to be 2 hour limit. I regularly drive home at 230am and its full of cars. I doubt all those people are using the park at that hour.

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You are 100% right that the majority of cars parked there are not people walking the pond. I have always surmised that they are people who live nearby (probably across the J-Way) and don't have a good place to park at night.

The part that I disagree with is that they are "abusing" the parking. At that hour they are not keeping pond-walkers from parking....those spots would just be sitting idle. So what's the harm of letting them park?

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Maybe some turkey-ridden hellhole where overnight street parking is prohibited?

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The harm is that there's no guarantee those cars are only there overnight. In the winter its not uncommon to see cars covered with snow long after a storm. These spaces are being used for car storage instead of by people wanting to make a visit to the park.

Even if a car was being parked overnight its probably still going to be there in the early am hours when many people want to visit the park for a run or walk.

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Cars tend to invade the bike lane to get past cars waiting to turn left onto Parkman.

Then perhaps it's not an appropriate location for a bike lane.

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I like the idea of narrowing the street and giving some green space back to people. It is a shame they put a busy street so ridiculously close to the pond in the first place, but this should help a little bit. I'd love it if they closed the street to traffic during the day on weekends like Memorial Drive in Cambridge on Sundays.

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I think they put the road there because this is a city, not some bucolic Utopian society you seem to think you deserve.

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Bear in mind all of the parkways in the Olmstead plan were intended for people to use for leisurely Sunday carriage rides and whatnot... not daily commuting.

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and we are not in the 19th century any more, BlackKat.

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This poster is a JP resident who thinks people in Roslindale, Mattapan and Hyde Park should basically stay at home instead of say, working in the hospitals or colleges. JP roads and parks are only for those who can walk there apparently.

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Still pining for your lost bridge, are you? --Clayton

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just close it and make it parkland already.... Prince Street parallels it 100' away, totally silly to have this road cutting through a park. Make Prince street two way, compensate the 5(!) property owners on prince street for their property value loss, and correct a mistake. The namesake Francis Parkman I'm sure would be happy to have his memorial be accessible to park users without the risk of being killed by crossing a street named after him.

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Prince St is south bound with a bike lane. Parkman St is north bound with a bike lane.

EDIT - Fixed due to core errors with my street names.

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Do you mean Parkman Drive north bound with a bike lane? That would work except for the Prince St. residents' opposition.

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And yes, that's what I meant.

As you point out, that would negatively impact the values of those homes unfortunately, although by keeping it one way with a bike lane, maybe it wouldn't be that bad.

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I drive through this intersection every evening on the commute home and I would gladly welcome crosswalks and especially a traffic light at the intersection. It is an absolute nightmare to turn left onto Perkins from Parkman. Parkman traffic has the right-of-way, and if you wait for a gap in traffic to turn left during rush hour, that gap will never come.

So I wait until there is no on-coming east-bound traffic on Perkins, and I take my left into the westbound Perkins traffic. Perkins is wide enough before Cottage for "two" lanes before merging into one, so it's not completely reckless. A couple years ago as a newb driver I would sit at that intersection forever waiting to take a left, and now I get to watch other newbs do the same thing. People get impatient and will cut around the person in the front of the line. Once an aggressive driver unhappy with how long I sat there followed me for a mile honking and veering his car towards mine. I also fear for the pedestrians I see stepping over the guardrail trying to get to the pond path. It is a nightmare and I'm glad they're doing something about it.

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Will the traffic light make the disaster that is the morning and afternoon traffic on Perkins (eastbound in the morning, westbound in the afternoon) worse? That road is already overloaded between all of the people trying to get through to the Park School and the commuters from Newton Street to the southwest and the people trying to avoid VFW by taking Independence further south.

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