WalkBoston, the commonwealth’s 30+ year old premiere walking advocacy organization, has decided to fully embrace its long-standing statewide role and has accordingly changed its name to “WalkMassachusetts.” For those of you who’ve been following our little home-grown walking advocacy group here in Roslindale, the outsized role that what is now WalkMassachusetts has played has been obvious. They’ve helped us with walk audits (e.g., Roslindale Square (2016), Poplar Street (2022)), been a fantastic technical resource generally, and led the charge on major efforts around city-level pedestrian safety improvements on our streets and changes in law at the state level to protect all vulnerable road users. We’ll let WalkMassachusetts have the extended last word on why they’ve chosen to take this step and what we can all expect going forward:
“Last year we reaffirmed our Mission and defined our Vision for the future: a Massachusetts where people walking—no matter their race, identity, age, ability, or lived experience—feel safe, connected, and valued on our streets and sidewalks.
“To make our Vision a reality, we established 3 goals:
Goal 1: Advocate for inclusive, safe, and enjoyable places for people to walk.
Goal 2: Work in places where people walking have the greatest need.
Goal 3: Achieve policy and built environment change that is noticeable, replicable, and impactful.
“This led to self-reflection on where and how we focus our work. The conclusion was a continued emphasis on equitably promoting walking across the state and a clear need to move forward as WalkMassachusetts.
“In short, the name has changed, but the mission remains the same: making walking safer and easier in Massachusetts to encourage better health, a cleaner environment, and more vibrant communities.”