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Revere councilor opposes bike lane on Bennington Street into East Boston because people won't be able to evacuate from flooding

The Revere Journal reports.

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..and a bike commuter, pedestrian, and occasional car driver and I don't have any idea what "evacuation" needs she's talking about.
This is the old "but won't anyone think of the eMerGenZee vEHiclEz" line trotted out when anyone dares take away space for private cars. She's pandering, simply put.

We desperately need safer streets, starting with the Bennington Motor Speedway and Winthrop Ave/Revere Beach Parkway. McKenna is my councilor, unfortunately (most of them have been uncontested in their elections, so we don't get much choice), and instead of advocating for more efficient and safer ways for Beachmont residents to get to Broadway - where all the city offices are - or into East Boston, she is telling us that we don't matter, and that safer streets don't matter.

Only cars matter. Only the high-speed straightaway matters.

In Revere, needs of pedestrians are barely an afterthought. Sensible, safe, community-centered transportation infrastructure and services seem to be out of the question. If you want to walk anywhere, be prepared to do so along a highway or navigate un-walkable high speed roundabouts.

And as for those of us who would rather get around by bike? I've come to the conclusion that Revere would be happy if we either just leave or end up dead.

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In Revere, needs of pedestrians are barely an afterthought. Sensible, safe, community-centered transportation infrastructure and services seem to be out of the question. If you want to walk anywhere, be prepared to do so along a highway or navigate un-walkable high speed roundabouts.

I recently started spending time in Revere for work related purposes, and I can't emphasize enough just how shockingly bad it is for pedestrians. Boston has a ways to go, but it is so much safer for walking than Revere. As for biking, that's a distance I'd consider for a bike commute, but I don't so far see a safe path between either Chelsea or Eastie and Revere, which leaves me to riding the Blue Line. Bike lanes on Bennington St. would be fantastic.

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Voting closed 30

This got trotted out when a local road got bike lanes.

Turns out not having cars make a second lane where there is no second lane has improved emergency response times. When cars can't take over every inch of pavement they can move over to let the ambulance through.

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(Due to flooding...) People were trying to get out of Beachmont to go to Winthrop, and they couldn’t

Um...if there was flooding on the coast, wouldn't you want to go to Revere, not further into the ocean? Am I missing something?

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Former resident of Bennington in Eastie...the evacuation route is up Bennington away from Maverick through Revere by the Target and towards higher elevation. Eastie being one of the most dense areas of Boston means that there will be a lot of traffic trying to get out.

Winthrop has two ways to get out, one through Eastie and the other through Revere. So yeah, they have to go through Revere

However, I only ever met my neighbors over car crashes, often at night. One time we had to help a 2/3 year old boy whose father was injured. He seemed like he was in shock. I can't remember if that was the car crash that ended up with an upside down car or not.

I also got to meet the Firefighters down by the Guild when our car got hit by one of the planters. Someone ran into it going about 80 and it slid across two lanes of traffic into our front bumper. Something needs to be done.

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Scientists studying the North Shore Lemming have discovered an odd discrepancy between the Revere and Winthrop colonies in their response to a flooding emergency. The Winthrop lemmings evacuate to Revere, and the Revere lemmings evacuate to Winthrop, or to East Boston. So far there are two prevalent theories for the paradoxical behavior of the Revere lemmings:

1. They are not evacuating to escape the flooding, but to escape the incursion of Winthrop lemmings.

2. The East Boston lemmings (which do not evacuate, and which rarely leave East Boston) secretly spread rumors in Revere that East Boston is very dangerous during a flood, and that Winthrop is the place to go.

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you just.. use the bike lane. if the flooding she's claiming happens in the way she's saying, there wont be any cyclists to use it, and it's not like a bike lane magically removes surface area from the roadway itself.

this isn't about evacuation needs.

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McKenna showed her fellow councillors several photos of backed up traffic in the Beachmont and Bennington Street area when a lane was closed recently due to flooding.

So, if the lane is going to be closed because of flooding during an evacuation, what's the problem if that lane is already a bike lane?

“[evacuating drivers] were going down dead end streets and not realizing it was water or the marsh, and turning around. It was a nightmare.”

What does this have to do with bike lanes?

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The flooding has nothing to do with bikes and everything to do with cars and their emissions which are causing global warming and the rising sea levels.

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Seems like a good idea to plan safety improvements to the road now, rather wait until someone gets killed, as is generally done around here (latest example just happened near the Children’s Museum).

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This is just culture wars BS, and any attempt to inject rational arguments as to why the bike lane wouldn’t actually impede emergency evacuation is a complete waste of time.

Years ago I lived in a different city, and there was one city councilor who always argued vehemently against bike infrastructure, and his arguments invariably included reference to spandex, which was really his main point to his base: “those people who would use the bike infrastructure aren’t us.”

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Voting closed 46

The same could be said about trying to convince a bike advocate that a particular road design will create large traffic jams that didn’t use to exist.

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The evidence is that bike lanes improve traffic so maybe it’s you who needs to be convinced by it not the bike advocates but regardless even if bike lanes made traffic worse, should that matter if they also make people biking more likely to live.

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Maybe if carbrains would present actual data rather than panicked hyperbole people might listen?

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in an emergency, when we can't even evacuate the city in an orderly fashion on a Tuesday afternoon, is hilariously horrible

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I always wondered what those "evacuation route" signs were in East Boston. I wondered what we would be evacuating from and where we would be going to.

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He had them put up after Katrina. The problem was: They all lead you out of Boston and then just stop at the city line, so what do you do then?

My personal favorite remains the way both Washington Street and VFW Parkway in West Roxbury (and points north) are evacuation routes that end at the same rotary in Dedham.

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...the basic idea is sound (maybe, see caveat). I was driving in coastal Virginia once, on a limited-access highway that had those evacuation route signs, plus movable barriers on entrance ramps (and exit ramps too maybe?). The idea was, if a big huge hurricane was coming to the coast, you change the eastbound side to go westbound, and you set the barriers so that no one can get on eastbound. I'm not sure what they do about emergency services that need to go towards the trouble, though - maybe the idea is that by that time, they need to already be in place?

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Emergency services (not responding to incidents on the limited-access highways) would use regular roads.

Thought: same idea as using both sides of the highway for single direction evacuation, but the reverse direction side is for buses only. Now THAT would be a capacity increase.

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“Ultimately, they are going to do what they want,” said Cogliandro. “There is a difference between moving forward into the future and being dragged there … and that is sometimes what it feels like.”

No reflection whatsoever about having to be dragged into the future.

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