Hyde Park Ave Safety Walk – January 28 at 1pm (Forest Hills Station)

We’re happy to see City Councillors Kendra Lara and Ricardo Arroyo, along with the Boston Transportation Department and neighborhood resident Nathan Eckstrom, are leading a safety walk on January 28th at 1pm, focusing on road safety issues along Hyde Park Avenue. The walk will meet at Forest Hills Station (Upper Level). Advance registration is recommended. More details here:

Safety Walk Poster

Some early 2023 news from Roslindale Square – A reopening and an opening!

The second half of December was unquestionably consequential for the center of Roslindale as a motor vehicle operator drove into the street level of the building at the corner of Belgrade and Corinth (mostly known these days as The Square Root Building) on the morning of December 18, taking out a support column and parts of 2 store fronts, resulting in structural damage and temporary evacuation of the entire building. We posted about this when it happened and encouraged folks to contribute to the community-based fund that was just then forming to support the businesses that we knew would be forced to leave the building for at least some period of time – potentially months in some cases. We’re happy to circle back now with the news that many of the businesses that had been forced out, including especially The Square Root, are now open again and the remainder have found temporary homes elsewhere in the square. This past Saturday morning found plenty of patronage inside the cafe itself, and, we suspect (based on the photo below), music rehearsal activity upstairs. It’s really good to see activity going on there again, though a discussion about how to make all of the streets in the square safer for everyone outside of motor vehicles is something we think must be on the agenda going forward.

Saturday also saw the official opening of the new brick-and-mortar location at 739 South Street (across from Wallpaper City) for Rozzie Bound Books, which has been the neighborhood’s community-owned virtual bookstore for the last few years. They’ve taken a small, but cozy space on the street level and are selling books and offering order/pickup as well. This promising development represents the presence of a permanent new book-selling location in the square for the first time in more than a decade, since the 2011 demise of Village Books, which had been located in part of the space where 753 South now operates. We hope to see Rozzie Bound thrive and grow in the years ahead!

WalkUP Roslindale – 2022 in Brief

So, 2022 definitely had its share of ups and downs, but in taking stock on the eve of 2023, three posts stand out as particularly worth looking back on and noting (in roughly reverse chronological order):

  • Taking first place, after a long, COVID-impacted process, the Lower South Street Neighborhood Slow Streets project obtained its final municipal approval and heads to installation this spring. The comments from Chief of Streets Jascha Franklin-Hodge at the conclusion of the hearing were especially encouraging. This post also features a major advancement for us that started in the fall of this year – we have started to translate our posts into Spanish.

The Lower South Street Neighborhood Slow Streets Project and Boston’s Commitment to Street Safety Citywide

  • In second place, we gave significant attention and sought to provide assistance to Roslindale residents in navigating the Orange Line shutdown from late August to late September in two posts that included links to official guidance as well as our own review of available substitute services, especially Needham Line and other commuter rail trains that made additional stops at Forest Hills and Ruggles during that month-long period.

RED ALERT: It’s now official – MBTA to close down Orange Line for 30 day “accelerated” repair effort on tracks and signals

MBTA adds additional service to Forest Hills starting today – 6 September 2022

  • In a 3-way tie for 3rd place, we had Mayor Wu’s inaugural group bike ride into downtown Boston from Roslindale (not officially a WalkUP Roslindale event, but many of us were very involved), plus our support for the successful permitting effort around the redevelopment of the funeral home site at 59-63 Belgrade Avenue, and our Poplar Street Walk Audit report (all from August, though the walk audit itself occurred in May).

Not an official WalkUP Roslindale Event, but very good to see this starting: Group bike ride into City Hall from Roslindale Square with Mayor Wu – 8 am this Thursday, 11 August 2022

Please help support housing at 59-63 Belgrade Avenue

Final Poplar Street Walk Audit Report

Calles Lentas de South Street Baja y el Vecindario Cercano

El 17 de noviembre, el plan de Calles Lentas de South Street Baja y el Vecindario Cercano fue aprobado por la Comisión de Mejoramiento Publico, Public Improvement Commission (PIC). Este logro fue la culminación de años de abogacía por parte de residentes y el trabajo del equipo de Calles Lentas de Boston, Boston Slow Streets team. Estos avances serán construidos en 2023. Vea las especificaciones: 

Después del voto, el Jefe de Calles, Jascha Franklin-Hodge tomó un momento para decir unas palabras sobre el compromiso por parte de la administración para reconstruir las calles de Boston incluyendo este extracto: 

“Debemos hacer más, debemos hacerlo más rápido – para reconstruir nuestras calles con el fin de que sean seguras y cómodas para todos. Y debemos ver y cambiar las políticas y los procesos que muchas veces resultan en un proceso prolongado y tardanzas excesivas al hacer este tipo de trabajo crítico. Así que solo quisiera decirles a los miembros del público aquí que yo al igual que la administración estamos comprometidos a hacer estos cambios.”  

Nosotros aplaudimos esta declaración y hemos incluido una transcripción completa con sus palabras abajo. Mientras el programa de Calles Lentas en Vecindarios, Neighborhood Slow Streets, a sido un programa exitoso, este solo no puede solucionar el peligro a nivel general que viven las personas vulnerables en vecindarios alrededor de la ciudad. Nosotros alentamos a la ciudad que cumplan con su compromiso de acelerar el paso de cambio, y esperamos trabajar en conjunto para brindar calles seguras a Roslindale. 

Comentarios completos:

“Antes de que sigamos quisiera quitarme el puesto de presidencia de PIC y usar esta oportunidad para decir algunas cosas de parte de la administración de la Alcaldesa Wu en mi capacidad como su Jefe de Calles y Comisario de Public Works. En primer lugar, quisiera decir gracias a ti Stephanie ([Seskin (Directora de Transportación Activa del Departamento de Transportación de Boston)] y su equipo por todos sus esfuerzos trabajando en este proyecto y durante los últimos años – yo se que estos esfuerzos han involucrado (como hemos escuchado) extensa divulgación pública, juntas públicas, oportunidades para dar comentarios, y múltiples rondas de revisión de diseño. Y llegar hasta este punto ha requerido bastante inversión de tiempo y energía por parte del equipo de la ciudad así que estoy muy agradecido por eso.

En segundo lugar, quisiera decir gracias a los miembros de la comunidad quienes han luchado por este proyecto, y quienes han impulsado a la ciudad a crear calles más seguras en los vecindarios por años y por décadas en algunos casos. Pedimos mucho de ustedes, incluyendo venir a esta junta en el medio del día en un Jueves, y eso es solo para obtener algo tan fundamental como una calle donde se sientan seguros.

La tercera cosa que quisiera decir es que la ciudad necesita mejorar. No debería tomar esfuerzos extraordinarios para obtener una básica infraestructura segura en nuestras calles. No deberíamos pedirles que alegen con nosotros por su seguridad o la de sus hijos y vecinos. Casi todos los días escucho de personas en vecindarios de cada parte de Boston sobre el miedo que sienten en nuestras calles – y si, esos sentimientos si importan. Y yo veo las estadísticas – todavía tenemos miles de personas cada año que son lesionadas en nuestras calles y casi todos los años más de una docena de personas mueren en esas mismas calles. Yo se que podemos y debemos hacer más para producir mejor infraestructura que sea más segura en la ciudad de Boston. 

Y quisiera decir que lo que acabamos de aprobar, lo que repasamos hoy representa mejores prácticas establecidas para las calles de vecindario. Estas se reflejan en la guía de la ciudad de calles completas: en la guia de calles urbanas de NACTO, en publicaciones de MassDOT, en publicaciones de la Administración Federal de Carreteras, Federal Highway Administration. Estos cambios no son novedosos, no son excepcionales o experimentales, y su eficacia no está en cuestión. Lo que aprobamos hoy son un set de cambios que acercaran a estas calles más cerca hacia lo que décadas de investigación y experiencia han mostrado que resultan en calles más seguras para todos los usuarios. Y entonces, la ciudad siempre aceptara y tomará en cuenta los consejos del público en cualquier proyecto que hagamos, pero la seguridad no debe de estar a debate y no debería de ser tan difícil o tomar tanto tiempo como lo toma ahora para obtener que estos tipos de cambios de seguridad sean implementados en la ciudad de Boston. Así que digo esto para reconocer que nosotros como líderes de la ciudad tenemos trabajo que hacer. 

Debemos hacer más, debemos hacerlo más rápido – para reconstruir nuestras calles con el fin de que sean seguras y cómodas para todos. Y debemos ver y cambiar las políticas y los procesos que muchas veces resultan en un proceso prolongado y tardanzas excesivas al hacer este tipo de trabajo crítico. Así que solo quisiera decirles a los miembros del público aquí que yo al igual que la administración estamos comprometidos a hacer estos cambios. Estoy muy emocionado de ver estos mejoramientos ser implementados en Roslindale el próximo año, y eso pasará mientras trabajamos para acelerar el paso de cambio – cambios como estos en vecindarios a través de Boston. Así que gracias, y solo quería tomar un momento para expresar mi posición sobre esto.”

The Lower South Street Neighborhood Slow Streets Project and Boston’s Commitment to Street Safety Citywide

Haga clic aquí para una versión en español de esta publicación

 

On 11/17/22, the Lower South Street and Vicinity Neighborhood Slow Streets plan was approved by the Boston Public Improvement Commission (PIC). This successful outcome was the culmination of years of advocacy by residents and work by the Boston Slow Streets team. These improvements will be built in 2023. View the specifics:

After the vote, Boston’s Chief of Streets, Jascha Franklin-Hodge, took a moment to make a statement about the administration’s commitment to rebuilding Boston’s streets including this excerpt:

“We must do more, we must do it faster – to rebuild our streets so that they are safe and comfortable for everyone. And we must look at and change the policies and the processes that often result in protracted process and excessive delay in doing this kind of critical work. So I just want to say to the members of the public here, you have my commitment and the administration’s commitment to make these changes.”

We applaud this statement and have included a transcription of his full remarks below. While Boston’s Neighborhood Slow Streets has been a successful program, it does not by itself sufficiently address the widespread danger posed to vulnerable street users in neighborhoods across the city. We encourage the administration to follow through on this commitment to accelerate the pace of change, and look forward to being a partner in bringing safer streets to Roslindale.

FULL REMARKS

“Before we move on I would like to take off my hat as PIC chair and use this as an opportunity to say a few things on behalf of Mayor Wu’s administration in my capacity as her Chief of Streets and Public Works Commissioner. First off, I want to say thank you Stefanie [Seskin (Active Transportation Director in the Boston Transportation Department)] and her team for all the hard work on this project over the past few years – I know that this effort has involved (as we’ve heard) extensive resident outreach, public meetings, feedback opportunities, and multiple rounds of design revisions. And getting to this point has required substantial investment of time and energy by the city team so I’m very grateful for that.

Second, I want to say thank you to the community members who have advocated for this project, and who have been pushing the city to create safer neighborhood streets for years, in some cases decades. We ask a lot of you, including showing up for a hearing in the middle of the day on a Thursday, and that’s just to get something as fundamental as a street where you feel safe.

The third thing I want to say is that the city needs to do better. It should not take extraordinary advocacy to get basic safety infrastructure on our streets. We should not ask you to plead with us for your safety or that of your kids or that of your neighbors. Almost every single day I hear from people in neighborhoods in every part of Boston about the fear they feel on our streets – and yes, those feelings do matter. And I see statistics – we still have thousands of people every year who are injured on our streets. and most years more than a dozen people are killed on those same streets. I know that we can and we must do more to produce better and safer infrastructure in the city of Boston. 

And I want to say that what we just approved, what we reviewed today represents well-established best practices for neighborhood streets. These are reflected in the city’s complete streets guidelines: in NACTO’S urban street design guide, in publications from MassDOT, in publications from the Federal Highway Administration. These changes are not novel, they’re not exceptional or experimental, and their efficacy is not in question. What we approved today is a set of changes that bring these streets closer to what decades of research and experience has shown us results in safer streets for all road users. And so, the city will always accept and consider public input on any project that we do, but safety should not be up for debate and it should not be as hard as it is or take as long as it does for us to get these kinds of safety changes implemented in the city of Boston. So I say this to acknowledge that we as city leadership have work to do. 

We must do more, we must do it faster – to rebuild our streets so that they are safe and comfortable for everyone. And we must look at and change the policies and the processes that often result in protracted process and excessive delay in doing this kind of critical work. So I just want to say to the members of the public here, you have my commitment and the administrations’ commitment to make these changes. I’m really excited to see these improvements get implemented in Roslindale next year, and that’s going to happen as we work to accelerate the pace of change – changes like these in neighborhoods across Boston. So thank you, I just wanted to take a moment to express our position on this.”

– Jascha Franklin-Hodge (Boston Chief of Streets)

Remarks made at 11/17 Public Improvement Commission meeting

(view the PIC video starting at Jascha’s remarks)

 

Final Poplar Street Walk Audit Report

We’re pleased to be able to share the final version of the Poplar Street Walk Audit report with everyone. No comments were received since we posted the draft on the 3rd of August, so the final is the same as the draft with just some dressing up (logos and footers added). The report is available in PDF format, and also posted below. We look forward to working with the city on planning and implementing street safety improvements in this critical corridor in our neighborhood.

Read More

Not an official WalkUP Roslindale Event, but very good to see this starting: Group bike ride into City Hall from Roslindale Square with Mayor Wu – 8 am this Thursday, 11 August 2022

Michelle takes a selfie with members of the mayor’s BPD detail team

[Photo credit @wutrain.]

For the first of what we hope will be many community group bike rides with Mayor Wu to come, Adams Park in Roslindale Square will be the starting point on this coming Thursday morning, 11 August 2022, at 8 am. This ride is open to everyone, all ages and types of riders of bicycles. Other key details:

  1. There will be no set agenda; just a bike ride with the mayor to get from Roslindale into downtown.
  2. There’s a sign up sheet available here, so we can gauge numbers and plan accordingly.
  3. In words, the route will run from Adams Park (Cummins/Washington side) in Roslindale Square up Washington Street to Forest Hills, then take the Southwest Corridor Bike Path to Ruggles, then Columbus Avenue, left on Dartmouth Street, right on Boylston Street, and finally a left back onto Washington Street and into the southern end of City Hall Plaza.
  4. A link to a graphical depiction of the route can be found here.
  5. We expect numbers sufficient enough to need ride marshals to keep us all together safely, so keep an eye out, and try to arrive by 7:45 am if possible to help the organizers get organized.
  6. Follow this twitter thread for more updates as they become available.

Thanks and hope to see you there!

Poplar Street Walk Audit – Draft report now available for general feedback

Following up on our early May Walk Audit on Poplar Street, conducted with our friends at WalkBoston, we are now able to share the draft report to solicit further feedback on how we might slow motor vehicle speeds and improve the safety of vulnerable street users, especially those on foot.

Please send any comments to <info@nullwalkuproslindale.org> by Monday, 15 August 2022. Many thanks!

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Poplar Street Walk Audit – 7 May 2022 – 9 am – BE THERE!!!

 

For our first walk audit in a bit more than a year, we’ll team up with WalkBoston to take stock of existing conditions and think about street safety improvements on Poplar Street, all the way from Roslindale Square to the intersection with Hautevale Street. Everyone is welcome to come, learn about street safety, and help us think about ways to make our neighborhood a safer, more welcoming place for everyone who wants to use this critical neighborhood street.

Here’s the route we’re planning on auditing:

The walk will start with an intro presentation at WorkHub at the Substation (corner of Cummins & Washington) at 9 am. Please check out and sign up at our facebook event page so we can try to do at least a little of numbers planning. More to come soon. Thanks!

Feedback Opportunity – South/Robert Intersection Safety Improvements – LANA Meeting 14 March 2022 @ 7:00 pm

From time to time, specific street intersections come up for redesign and improvement to promote their safety. We understand that one such case is underway now for the intersection of South and Robert streets in the Longfellow Area Neighborhood Association‘s part of Roslindale, directly adjacent to Fallon Field. It’s an intersection that is used fairly frequently by folks on foot to access the playground and other facilities at Fallon, especially smaller children and their families. It also sports one of the more notorious slip lanes in the neighborhood, used by drivers to go from Robert onto South, with a stop sign that, based on this observer’s personal experience, is actually complied with less than 10% of the time. Thankfully, LANA have been advocating for many years for changes here and we understand that the Boston Transportation Department will be unveiling 25% design plans and seeking feedback this coming Monday evening, 14 March 2022, at LANA’s regular board meeting (which will also reportedly feature an appearance by new District 6 City Councilor Kendra Lara). You can sign up to attend the meeting HERE. Hope to see you there! mjl