Hey, there! Log in / Register

Boston sets $44-million re-do of Blue Hill Avenue with center bus lanes

The Dorchester Reporter has the details of the plan, which calls for reconstruction to start in 2026.

Free tagging: 


Ad:


Like the job UHub is doing? Consider a contribution. Thanks!

Comments

BHA double and triple parking makes Broadway in South Boston in the 70's look quaint.

Who will have the honor of being the first BTD traffic worker beaten to within an inch of their life for towing cars outside of the pizza place at the corner of BHA and Talbot?

up
Voting closed 47

Other places where such lanes have been tried, including Columbus Ave, just down the street from this proposal, have not seen cars parking in the bus lanes. People tend to double park when they think it won't completely block through traffic, but are much less likely to do so when the street is designed properly.

up
Voting closed 49

I don't think double-parking is the street's fault.

up
Voting closed 25

People tend to double park at the closest distance to the door of wherever it is they’re going. Or right next to whoever the Uber is picking up. Not a single thought given to anything or anyone else. Design of any road that doesn’t see this problem is inherently flawed, and is a big reason why it’s harder to get around this city now.

up
Voting closed 27

1) I didn’t know BTD did their own towing.

2) but more pertinent: what makes you think this would happen? Has it happened elsewhere that BTD has towed cars? A cursory search doesn’t show anything, and I assumed Adam would have covered it. What is it about the BHA neighborhood that makes the population there more likely to beat up tow truck drivers or BTD employees (in your mind)?

up
Voting closed 31

You must be new to the area.

I thought you were a transportation expert.

People have attacked BTD workers in the past for towing and ticketing.

Adam is not the only news source.

Some of us (mon dieu!) took their Driver's Ed at the intersection of BHA and Talbot and know the area better than your transplant arse.

Stop trying to be such a worm by pretending to be naive. You are smarter than that.

up
Voting closed 41

Some vehicles are towed by private companies. That's probably what I was confused by.

Thanks for the story linked; it seems those are for tickets and not tows, but that kind of shit shouldn't be happening.

up
Voting closed 22

A BTD employee was beaten by a driver in Dorchester earlier this month when the BTD employee was ticketing the loser's vehicle. Luckily the thug was arrested and charged. https://www.boston.com/news/local-news/2024/02/26/city-worker-beaten-par...

up
Voting closed 25

Washington street south of forest hills has bus lanes, but on the curb side not the center. I live on the street and take the bus to work. Every day there are cars parked in the bus lane, even where the red paint hasn't worn away. I've never seen a tow for bus lane violation. Very occasionally I will see an orange ticket. OTOH, I have seen, over the years, tows for parade prep, snow emergency, construction, and street cleaning.

up
Voting closed 24

One can simply look at the statistics . Duh.

up
Voting closed 17

could be better spent on hundreds of more important issues in this community. What about repaving pot hole laden side streets, cleaner school bathrooms or planting new city trees?

up
Voting closed 35

Why do I think if the city announced a plan to spend $44 million on filling potholes on side streets and planting trees, somebody would complain there are more important things to do with the money, like fixing Blue Hill Avenue?

up
Voting closed 87

For better or for worse, there isn’t discretionary federal funding available for fixing potholes, but there is for bus lanes. So we get bus lanes.

(Actually, the T and the City should have applied for small starts funding for this, which would have taken a bit longer but could have been a larger chunk of change. They’re already matching $15 million of federal funds with $29 million local, small starts can be up to an 80% match although it’s usually closer to 50%. Small starts projects can include transit and bike improvements along and near the corridor, so they could have had an expanded program with a full roadway rebuild and better bike lanes than flex posts and probably could have fixed up a bunch of sidewalks and streets near the route as well, but the T will only do one CIG project at a time even while somewhere like Washington has nearly a dozen in the pipeline so we get table scraps.)

up
Voting closed 36

You do realize we can focus on vastly improving BHA while also repaving side-streets, cleaning bathrooms, and planting trees, right?

up
Voting closed 52

When is that going to happen? I’ve had a dead tree on my street going on the second season.
Capital improvements and quality of life issues need to be prioritized, not something that’s proposed because it looks good on the news.

up
Voting closed 13

BHA is the busiest bus corridor in New England. It has higher transit ridership than any individual green line branch. It honestly deserves more than bus lanes and I do think there would be train discussions if the demographics were different. But bus lanes seem like a bare minimum improvement for such a busy transit corridor with such massive traffic delays that so disproportionately impact people of color.

up
Voting closed 43

But if you have been following this issue here on uhub, you'd know that the community itself has been pushing back on any sort of transit improvements along Blue Hill Ave. And its not the gentrifiers saying no, its the people of color who have lived there for years who are saying no.

I think doing bus lanes is a way to find the happy medium for now. Light Rail would be a longer turn around time and longer construction for the folks living nearby. Also remember that there's no real way to connect this to the rest of the Green Line.. so they may share resources like trolley cars, repair facilities, etc. so all new facilities would need to be built. (Just look at the GLX to see how long that took)

(of course if the SL1 was light rail... this wouldn't be such an issue but alas..)

up
Voting closed 8

there's no real way to connect this to the rest of the Green Line.. so they may share resources like trolley cars, repair facilities, etc. so all new facilities would need to be built.

Sure there is - lay some rails and make some short branch to a convenient connection point! But it would certainly be unrealistic to expect them to deal with the cost & pushback of laying new rails or uncovering old ones on some tight little city street.

Your point about shop & yards is a good one.

They would need to do something.
If it's not practical to tie it in to some future improvement at the Mattapan yard... I would suggest that it might be cost-effective to invest in a service gate/ramp connection to commuter rail tracks somewhere, some maintenance to reactivate little-used & unused railroad branches, and a towing diesel that could tow anything around (outside 128) to Riverside.
There would still be some hurdles to clear, of course - any physical connection between "light" and "heavy" rail is not a routine matter.

...OR... waitaminnit... they could maybe... put a combination light rail/bus yard someplace like... ummm... at the corner of Washington and Morton??!!

up
Voting closed 9

Prioritizing transit riders over drivers is a win for the entire region. Center-running bus see far less unauthorized parking vs side-running ones. The side-running lanes in Allston/Brighton just act as a "standing lane" for delivery drivers.

As a cyclist who avoids BHA at all costs, I hope they do more to protect the bike lanes than flex posts. Without hard barriers, people will still block the lane.

up
Voting closed 60

they are wasting money. The priorities are in the wrong places. Bus lanes make more traffic. The MBTA is unreliable. Those barriers dont get cleaned. The roads are terrible. Bridges are falling apart.he cost of living is too expensive for the infrastructure to be as bad as it is.

up
Voting closed 32

Do you think federal infrastructure money is tied to how much grocery stores gouge somehow?

up
Voting closed 35

The fact that you see this as money not being spent on infrastructure is quite telling.

up
Voting closed 60

You have no clue what you are talking about. The only people who create traffic are car drivers. If everyone who rode the bus drove a car instead then traffic would never move. If you think the infrastructure in MA is so bad then tell your representatives you want them to raise the gas tax.

up
Voting closed 44

Bus lanes objectively improve traffic. They have higher capacity than general travel lanes and they improve the reliability of buses. Everyone riding on the bus is one less car on the same route. If you are stuck in traffic you are the traffic.

up
Voting closed 36

I am regularly on Columbus Ave and have not seen any change in traffic or the amount of time it takes to get from Center to BHA. It still take the same over even a bit longer to travel this route since the new center lanes were added. I also wonder if it actually increases ridership. I doubt it does.

up
Voting closed 12

It took a while but drivers seem to have realized flex posts can be driven over with no damage to their car. I've been seeing drivers intentionally drive over them to park where they shouldn't or to cut the line in traffic.

up
Voting closed 21

Back in 2009 the exact same proposal was rejected by the community and elected officials. The plan looks good on paper but preserving bike lanes and parking spaces in Mattapan square are going to be a challenge.

up
Voting closed 12

All the state bigwigs blew into Dudley station one day and announced this mega Silver Line like thing without having even consulted with local officials, like then state Rep. Gloria Fox, let alone other local residents and business owners. Given the state's history of ignoring the wishes of the locals along BHA, that pretty much ensured opposition from the start.

At least this time, the city held a series of meetings - and will hold more on specific stretches of the avenue.

up
Voting closed 25

T commuting from Jackson Sq is soo much faster so I am looking forward to this, I expect the potholes will be fixed and new lines put down at every intersection as well, like they did for Columbus Ave.

There's a lot more work to do but this is big. Plus most locals know their way around avoiding BHA while all the construction is happening like they did on Columbus.

up
Voting closed 26