Washington Street in Roslindale back to gridlock this morning

Gridlock on Washington Street in Roslindale

With the end of a month-long pilot of a bus/bike lane on Washington Street, the stretch between Roslindale Square and Forest Hills was back to its usual gridlock this morning, the LivableStreets Alliance reports.

The T and the Boston Transportation Department barred parking on the northbound side of the street in the morning rush hour to gauge how well a dedicated lane would work. Now we wait for the results of their studying.

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Surprises me

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If only for the fact that they hung up metallic signs 2 weeks ago that made it seem like they had seen enough data and made up their mind before the end of the test.

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There is nothing to study.

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There is nothing to study. Express bus lanes work. Make it permanent immediately and start implementing them around the city.

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Yep, they're dedicated bus (and bike) lanes

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And they ease congestion by basically doubling the capacity of the road in that stretch, at least during rush hour (given how many buses funnel onto Washington at Roslindale Square). It's at the expense of people who normally park along that stretch, but I keep hearing of some study that claims most of the people parked there are that time are commuters themselves looking to get to Forest Hills.

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That's not in dispute

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But the reality is that express lanes would work quite differently.

Have you ever gotten on the 34E Express bus out of Forest Hills? If you have, then you'll both know the definition of express and how long it takes to get from Lagrange Street to your house.

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Ugh! I did that once in high

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Ugh! I did that once in high school and then had to walk all the way back to the Pleasant basically. It was the worst! Yes the express buses are different!.
Also hooray for dedicated bus lanes! Please let them come back soon!

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It's, it's, complicated

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The runs are marked "Limited" (or technically LIMITED, but then again all bus signs are in caps) but occasionally they will note that it is express to Lagrange Street. If the drivers stay true to their charge, they will not let anyone off before that, though I believe that if someone flags the bus down they will pick them up.

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No matter what it says, that

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No matter what it says, that's what a limited stop route is.

An express bus is like the 501.

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The 501 makes more than 2 stops

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It's just that the first stop after passing the Surface Artery is on Cambridge Street in Brighton. The only difference is that there are no runs of the 501 that stop along the Mass Pike.

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And

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Who cares why they’re parked there. It’s obviously not the best use

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Unfortunately America seems

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Unfortunately America seems to have the problem of needing to feel like we invented everything. Why we always need to do so many studies is beyond me. It works in other places, it will work here.

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Not really

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A transit study isn't 'whether it will work here or not' but rather will it work in our specific application. Each application is different (traffic, lights, car count), so it needs to be done each and every time. Then there's environmental that need to be studied also.

Seems to be over kill but you'd be surprised at what comes up when you start to look at roadway dimensions or where driveways are. So its not always just "can't we just do this now"

And then of course the public process, where the real fun begins. Just look at how well it went 2 weeks ago in Southie for their bus lane project. NIMBYism at its best.

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southie

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Time to make a small containment area just for the old people to drive their cars around in circles and double and triple park to their hearts content. Make it nothing but dunks and catholic churches and post offices. It will be like one of those retro villages for the memory challenged that they do in Europe, while rest of the neighborhood joins the 21th century.

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For the typical government

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For the typical government study, they know the answer they want before they start.

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How long do we wait?

Summer is slower due to the absence of school bus traffic but this should be implemented no later than the end of August.

Related- what's the time frame, etc... for the bike trail (which will be presumably be ruined by dog walkers) from FH to the square?

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Not just dog walkers

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Side by side stroller convoys and 4 wide groups of pedestrians all clog the other "marked for bikes only" bikeways I use regularly.

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Curious

What paths around Boston are "marked for bikes only" other than the Southwest Corridor?

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Separate bike and pedestrian paths

Danehy Park in Cambridge has two paths side-by-side, the narrower one marked for pedestrians and the wider for cyclists. These are very useful ways to get to the Fresh Pond shopping center.

The east side of Jamaica Pond also has separate paths. The upper one next to the parkway is for cyclists, the lower one next to the pond for pedestrians.

The west side of Leverett Pond in Brookline has a similar arrangement, though I no longer remember which side is for which mode. It is pretty clearly signed, though.

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Pond

The Jamaica Pond one, the upper track is mixed, the lower is ped only

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The East Boston Greenway

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It's a strange setup. They have a divider in the middle of the asphalt. The side closest to the Blue Line tracks are marked for bikes, while the side closest to the harbor is marked for walkers. It seems odd, since people would naturally cycle (and walk to an extent) on the right. Also, I should note that I have only been on this greenway between Wood Island and Constitution Beach.

But as I always note, I've only seen a pathway noting bikes only in Denver. Not that I travel to a lot of places, but in Boston, I haven't seen a path that bars non-cyclists from it explicitly.

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?

What about the bike signs at Orange line corridor?

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I suppose

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The signs are more directional than prohibitory. The one's in Denver explicitly say bikes only. But Chaosjake already noted the signs on the Southwest Corridor. And I won't lie- I tend to ignore them both as a runner in a cyclist (while being respectful to whoever the paths are supposed to be for.)

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Peds next to Columbus Ave

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I ignore the signs in the SW Corridor, too. They put the bikes in the green bits of the corridor and the peds on the sidewalk next to the traffic sewer that is Columbus Ave. Blecchh!

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Seriously

I bike the corridor - they put the walking and biking paths in the wrong positions! And they they have them cross over each other at crosswalks!

The worst part is that the newest section, in front of the new Northeastern science building, they continued that mistake instead of fixing it when they had the chance.

And I think I saw them making the same mistake in plans for the Ruggles Street cycletrack.

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I run the corridor... I'm

I run the corridor... I'm glad I'm not the only one that notices that the bike and ped paths are in the wrong place. I do my best to honor the signs, but it's pretty frustrating to be stuck right beside traffic while bikes get a grassy, tree lined park.

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please link

The only reference I can find to bike only in the Denver area is mountain bike trails or a bridge that is bike only.

Recreational riding and training are completely different from commuting. A mountain bike only trail isn't that newbie friendly.

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I can't quite

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What I am talking about is the Cherry Creek Trail. In this description, they note the channelized section and how it splits. At the split, just north of Colfax, there's a sign that explicitly says "bikes only." After that point, the asphalt is narrow, but there are paths on both sides of the creek.

Mind you, I was there 6 years ago, so things might have changed.

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Voting is closed. 23

Extension of the Blackwell Path

is moving forward with the groups involved raising the needed money at this point for design. A lot of people are working hard on this.

It is not going to be a bike path, but a shared path, for bikes, runners, and pedestrians.

I'm sure you have as many anecdotes about bad dog walkers as I do about rude cyclists. I'm also assuming you are not part of the latter, not am I part of the former.

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Good to know

I thought it was intended primarily as a bike path to link Roslindale with FH and getting cyclists off of Washington St., my bad.

It's crazy to me this is a 'fund raising' project vs. a 'get the City to fund a study' project.

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The City

transportation department is being very helpful with the planning stage, and perhaps more so as the project progresses. The land is partly on Arboretum land and partly on the MBTA train ride-of-way.

Private grant money has funded the initial planning. The Arboretum Park Conservancy, the Arboretum, and Walkup Roslindale are all involved. Like many good things that get accomplished, there are multiple partnerships involved.

As projects go, it is moving forward steadily and positively. There are also issues--pathway near seasonal wetlands, need for a raised boardwalk in places, road and crossing improvements at South and Bussey Streets, for a start. All of which will need approval of various commissions. Fingers crossed it continues on as smoothly as it has been so far.

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Can’t wait

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Though they should build a companion stone arch bridge for the path parallel to the train one, you know, for looks.

(Kidding)

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While I'm totally in favor of

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While I'm totally in favor of the path, I hope it isn't going into the areas of right of way that will eventually be needed for an Orange Line extension, when the needham line gets choked out of berths at SS and is put on the chopping block.

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I hope

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People are asking the BTD that.

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It was great while it lasted.

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It was great while it lasted. Not sure what they need to study as all I know it took me 12 minutes to get from Rozzie to FH instead of 30-35 minutes. Hopefully they implement it both ways sooner than later.

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More Travel Lanes = More Traffic, More Pollution

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Google “induced demand”. Adding lanes never works for long, because everyone will drive where the traffic is better. Then the traffic gets worse.

Better to repurpose lanes and provide alternatives such as bus lanes, or make it easier to walk or bike.

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Much nicer to drive through Cambridge

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Removing lanes has been very good for organizing people and preventing gridlock.

If you don't like it, don't drive - plenty of alternatives there, too.

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As a cyclist and transit

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As a cyclist and transit rider, I'm not happy that Cambridge made the backups on Prospect Street southbound much worse than they used to be.

They did this by removing a lane on the first two blocks of Western Ave, and letting the lights get unsynchronized.

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No More Parking

Why is nobody acknowledging the disastrous result of removing half the parking for an entire neighborhood? Or practically all the parking if they do it in both directions. This is not like other bus lanes (aka Washington St. South End) where there is still parking next to the lane. As to bikers, on what planet is a shared bus/bike lane better than a dedicated bike lane? The only people this helps are bus riders moderately. Everyone else suffers for the city to pat themselves on the back and quote a 5 minute bus travel time improvement during rush hour. Makes me want to move out of my Washington St. neighborhood that I otherwise love.

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Read the other thread?

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83% of the vehicles parking there are not registered to people living in the neighborhood.

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Resident Permits

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When I gave my feedback I specifically told BTD and company that this is half the battle. The other half is turning the side streets off of Washington into resident parking, so people who live there aren't unduly burdened by this.

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Shared lanes aren't perfect

but it is the best option here. There isn't room for both. But now that the buses actually run, you don't need a car.

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