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When In Doubt Do It Yourself

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 09

Johnathan Fertig is amazing!  He was sick of seeing the slow progress of adding divider pylons on Mass. Ave. so he went and did it himself!



Inspired by a book about “tactical urbanism” and what he called the city’s slow response to making certain roadway improvements, cyclist Jonathan Fertig took matters into his own hands and constructed a separated bike lane along one of Boston’s most dangerous thoroughfares using house plants and orange traffic cones.

Now he’s raising money online to create more “flower lanes” just like it to keep cyclists and pedestrians safe on the same corridor.

On Sunday, Fertig, who commutes daily from his home in Dorchester to Cambridge, placed six potted plants and cones on a portion of Massachusetts Avenue near the Beacon Street intersection, the site of a fatal crash in August that claimed the life of endocrine surgeon Anita Kurmann.

“I went to Home Depot, bought the mums that were on sale for $6, and then just put them down and walked away,” Fertig said.(via)

The article also shares a tweet from our own Greg Hum.

These sort of improvements are not rocket surgery, there are many well tested and well implemented examples of good bicycle infrastructure from both American Cities and the rest of the world all we have to do is copy and implement!

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Boston Is Improving Dangerous Mass. Ave. Intersection

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 31

As I noted before, the intersection is definitely under construction.


A protected bike lane, signs calling for turning motorists to yield to pedestrians and cyclists, and optimized traffic signals are some of the improvements coming to the Boston intersection where a bicyclist was killed this month.

The intersection at Massachusetts Avenue and Beacon Street has been repaved, new striping will be applied, and flexible posts protecting the bike lane on Massachusetts Avenue will be installed starting this week, said Vineet Gupta, director of planning for the city’s Transportation Department.

“Our goal is to make it safe for everyone at that intersection,” Gupta said.(via)

I would have liked to see more improvements, but this is a start.  Keeping Mass. Ave. to two lanes as it exits the bridge heading into Boston and making the right most lane a protected cycle track with a large curb bump to slow right turning vehicles (the curb bump out could have a cut through for cyclists) would have been more optimal in my opinion.  The curb bump out would also make it easier for pedestrians to cross.

Even though they have known it was the most dangerous intersection in the town since at least 2013(pdf), it apparently took a fatal crash to get them to fix it up. While I am very glad they are addressing this concern, will it take a dead cyclist at every dangerous intersection to get these well known problems fixed?  The truck drivers name/company still has not been released, and they have still not filed any charges.

It looks to me like he was clearly making a right hand turn from the left most lane.  And if the city has these images, they probably have many more.  This person needs to be charged with something.

A ban on crazy huge vehicles without escorts should also be put in place.

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Mass. Ave. Intersection Repaved, No Lane Markings

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 30

The Mass. Ave. intersection at the base of the Mass. Ave. Bridge has been repaved, and all the street markings are gone. This, as you may recall, is the scene of the recent hit and run that killed Anita Kurmann. The driver of that truck has of yet not been charged with anything.

Two thoughts immediately came to mind. Is this going to affect any investigation into her death? And two, is this in direct response to the crash?

As of now there are no lane markings, making what was already a very dangerous intersection, more so. Be careful out there.

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Ghost Bike For Anita Kurmann

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 19

A ghost bike will be placed where Anita Kurmann was killed by a driver in a truck last week.  The memorial will be Thursday Aug 20th at 6:30pm at the intersection of Mass. Ave. and Beacon st.

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Hubway Turns 4, Has Logged Over 4.6 Miles In Trips

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 17


If you take the 4 millionth trip you could win a prize!  From Hubway:

Hubway’s launched with 60 stations and 600 bikes throughout Boston, and the first trip was taken on July 28th, 2011. In the last four years we’ve seen expansion to Brookline, Cambridge, and Somerville, along with an additional 79 stations (139 total) and 700 bikes (1,300 total), with further additions expected later this year along with Hubway’s 4 millionth trip. Check out the fun data graphic — we hope you’ll celebrate with us by taking a ride — and see below for plenty of suggestions for places to pedal. If you#TakeHubway‘s 4 millionth trip, you could win a $250 gift card from New Balance!

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Police Release Name Of Woman Killed On Mass. Ave.

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 08

My deepest sympathies go out to her friends and family.  I can only hope that real change comes from this tragedy.

From the BPD:

At about 7:05 AM on Friday, August 7, 2015, officers assigned to District D-4 (South End) responded to a call for a bicyclist struck in the area of Beacon Street and Massachusetts Avenue.   On arrival, officers located a female victim, who has since been identified as Anita Kurmann, 38, of Cambridge, suffering from life threatening injuries. The victim later succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced deceased.

Investigators have located the flat-bed tractor trailer truck and the operator involved in this accident.  The Boston Police Department continues to investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding this incident.  Anyone with information is asked to call detectives at (617) 343-4470.

Community members wishing to assist this investigation anonymously can do so by calling the CrimeStoppers Tip Line at 1(800) 494-TIPS or by texting the word ‘TIP’ to CRIME (27463). The Boston Police Department will stringently guard and protect the identities of those who wish to help this investigation anonymously.


More information has been released about Anita. Such a lovely person, she will be missed I am sure. Again my deepest sympathies go out to her friends and family.(via)


Anita Kurmann came to Boston from Switzerland nearly three years ago as an endocrine surgeon who wanted to put her medical training to use in a research lab.

She did that and much more, her supervisors said, forging a relationship between laboratories at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Boston University as they collaborated on transforming embryonic stem cells into functional thyroid tissue.

But just as she was preparing to return to Switzerland to set up her own research lab later this year, Kurmann, 38, was killed while riding her bicycle Friday morning at a busy Back Bay intersection. Her death stunned colleagues at both labs.

“She was the kind of the person you want to be your surgeon,” Dr. Tony Hollenberg said Saturday night. Hollenberg supervised Kurmann at Beth Israel.

“She was kind. She was compassionate,” he said. “She had it all. It’s a huge loss.”

Kurmann was killed after she was struck around 7:05 a.m. Friday at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Beacon Street, police said. A long flatbed tractor-trailer truck was making a right turn from Massachusetts Avenue onto Beacon Street when the fatal collision occurred.

Kurmann recently moved to Cambridge and biked often, Hollenberg said. Her fellow researchers spent Friday trying to get answers and get in touch with Kurmann’s relatives in Switzerland, Hollenberg said.

“She was European and that was the mode of transportation,” he said. “She was a great athlete.”

Dr. Darrell Kotton, who worked with Kurmann at BU’s Center for Regenerative Medicine, said he had hoped she would have a long career.

“She brought out the best in me and my team,” Kotton said. “It’s just a devastating loss.”

Hollenberg credited Kurmann with uniting the two labs.

“Because of her perseverance, her personality, her ability to get along . . . she built the bridges between our two labs,” he said.

The project she was working on related to turning embryonic stem cells into thyroid tissue was almost complete, and Kurmann was preparing the research for publication in a journal, Hollenberg said. The research was aimed at helping people who are born without a thyroid or have their thyroid surgically removed, according to Hollenberg.

“Nothing scared her, and that’s what allowed her to be successful in this project. She didn’t know how hard it was. She just thought that all science projects were like this,” he said. “It’s an incredible loss. She was loved by everybody who ever worked with her.”

Hollenberg sent a message to colleagues saying that Kurmann came to Beth Israel to broaden her knowledge of science and she contributed to the hospital in many ways — but that she will be missed for so much more.

”Above and beyond her many professional achievements, Anita was – most importantly – brilliant in life,” he wrote. “She was dynamic and kind-hearted and the consummate friend, professional and achiever. We will miss her deeply.”

Boston Police spokesman Stephen McNulty called the investigation “active and ongoing.”

The truck and the operator have been located, McNulty said. He could not say whether investigators have spoken with the operator, and police have not named the operator.

A man at nearby Quality Market on Saturday said he was there when it happened. A witness ran into the store, he said, and yelled, “Call 911!”

“I ran outside and I [saw] her,” said the man, who only gave his name as Chafik. “When I got there, she was dead. That was it.”

The growing makeshift memorial honoring Kurmann at the site includes flowers, a Boston Bike Party sticker with a black line through it, and a copy of James Joyce’s short story “The Dead.”

Jami King, 26, of Mission Hill, biked to crash site Saturday evening and placed a mixed bouquet of flowers at the memorial.

Wiping away tears, King said she did not know Kurmann, but used to ride by that spot regularly on her way to school.

“This could have been me,” she said.

Richard Inonog, 36, and his wife, Colleen O’Malley, 34, of the South End, visited the site Saturday on their bicycles to pay tribute to Kurmann, though they did not know her.

“We’re always worried because the same thing could happen to us at any time,” O’Malley said as tears fell.

“There’s a lot of aggression toward cyclists,” she said. “You’re not as valued.”

Inonog said the city must implement safeguards, like well-marked bike lanes, to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

“It’s really stressful,” he said. “You’re always thinking about being safe.”

A letter to Kurmann had been left earlier in a box.

The writer, who signed the note “Gretta,” said people had comforted Kurmann after she was hit.

“Know your daughter left this world with love [and] concern by her side,” Gretta wrote. “For a short time that I was here, she was strong.”

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Woman Cyclist Killed On Mass. Ave. In Hit And Run

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 07

Check in with your friends.  Does anyone know who this is.  This is horrible, and marks yet another instance of large trucks having fatal interactions with cyclists.





More images here


A woman riding a bike was struck and killed by a truck in an apparent hit-and-run in the Back Bay Friday morning.

The cyclist was hit by the rear wheel of a flatbed truck as it turned off Massachusetts Avenue onto Beacon Street around 7 a.m.

The woman was rushed to Massachusetts General Hospital where she died a short time later, according to police.

Her name has not been released, but investigators said she was in her 20’s. (via)


If you see a truck matching the following description let police know right away.


Police said it is possible the truck driver was not aware the cyclist had been hit.

They’re looking for a flatbed truck with a red sleeper cab and a damaged chrome grill.

A city traffic camera has video of crash, according to police, and authorities plan to release images of the truck soon.

No other information is available at this point in the investigation.

Does anyone know who owns this bike?




More info from the globe:



She was struck by a tractor-trailer unit pulling a flatbed trailer loaded with steel, said Boston Police Superintendent Bernard O’Rourke. Police were called to the scene at 7:05 a.m.

He described the tractor-trailer as having a red sleeper cab with chrome air horns on top of it, and some damage to the grill. He said the truck driver may not have seen the bicyclist, but stressed the investigation is just starting.

He said surveillance cameras in the neighborhood captured the incident and some of that footage may be released to the public later Friday.

“It’s a very, very tragic situation,’’ O’Rouke said.

The search for the vehicle is underway. “We are checking everything we can. We are looking at every single surveillance camera we can check,” he said. “We’re doing whatever we can to find the truck.”

Zach Cloyd, 31, who lives next door to the scene, said he stopped biking home from work because this particular intersection is dangerous.

“That exact corner, waiting at that corner, I’ve had someone almost hit me as they were turning right,” he said.

In the aftermath of the crash, there was a bike with a crushed handlebar laying at the intersection and nearby a helmet laying next to the bike.(via)



This is the truck they are looking for:







See a periscope of the officer at the scene talking about the crash.



UHub reports this is a very dangerous intersection, which we figured out in 2013.  Lets hope we do something with that data now. (via)


The Back Bay intersection where a bicyclist was hit and killed this morning was identified in a city report two years ago as the most dangerous in the city for bicyclists.

A 2013 report on bicycle safety commissioned by then Mayor Menino found the intersection of Beacon Street and Massachusetts Avenue had more bicycle crashes than any other – and noted it was just two blocks away from the second riskiest intersection for bicyclists:

We found that nearly 60% of all bicycle collisions occurred at street intersections. Of the 7 locations with 5 or more geographically identical collision locations, the top two intersections with the highest number of crashes were in the Back Bay/Beacon Hill neighborhood, with 14 collisions at Beacon St and Massachusetts Ave and 12 collisions at Massachusetts Avenue and Commonwealth Ave (Westbound).

H/t Penny Cherubino.


BPS has released more pictures of the truck.




They have also said that the woman was in her early 30’s not her 20’s.



They found the driver and the truck.  No charges filed yet.


7News Boston WHDH-TV

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Bikes Not Bombs Update

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 05

The latest from Bikes Not Bombs:


Cycloville Video Premiere
Film screening at Ride Studio Cafe

Join Bikes Not Bombs on Wednesday, August 26thfrom 7-9pm at Ride Studio Cafe in Lexington, MA for a celebration of our new international partner,Cycloville, in Nairobi, Kenya.

We will be releasing a 6-minute documentary about Cycloville’s work supporting the local cycling industry and training young mechanics in bike shops all over Nairobi. The documentary will begin at7:30pm with a short discussion and Q&A to follow. Drinks and snacks will be served. Check out thetrailer and RSVP to the Facebook Invite.

Earn-A-Bike graduates from Spring 2015
Applications open for Fall Earn-A-Bike and Adult Instructor Training

Our next session of Earn-A-Bike will be Oct 5th – Nov 5th meeting MondayThursday 4-7pm. This program is co-ed and for 12-18 year olds, applytoday!

Fall Adult Instructor Training will be Sept 14th – 30th. This training will teach adults about basic bike mechanics and working with youth. After the training adults agree to volunteer at 1 day per week for at least one session of Earn-A-Bike or Girls In Action. Learn more and apply on our website.

Join us for the Building Momentum Breakfast!
Be a Table Captain at the Building Momentum Breakfast!

Bikes Not Bombs’ 5th annual Building Momentum Breakfast will take place Thursday, October 15th! The Breakfast is designed to raise financial support for BNB and spread the word about our innovative work.

We are looking for 10-12 Table Captains to make this event a success! Table Captains bring friends, family, and colleagues, anyone who will connect with the mission and work of BNB to the Breakfast. There will be a Table Captain info session and training onWednesday, August 12th from 6-7pm. Please contact[email protected] if you are interested.

We're outgrowing our spaces!
Space Visioning

Several of our programs are finding it difficult to achieve their goals because of space constraints and/or the location of our facilities. We are thinking of making some changes and need your input!

Please take 5 minutes to complete this survey beforeAugust 12th.

Stop by the Shop!
Free Clinics at the Bike Shop

Mon 8/10 7-9pm Femmechanics
Thurs 8/13 8-9pm Basic Repair & Maintenance
Wed 8/19 8-9pm Flat Fixing
Please be on time for the clinics.

The Shop will be closed and Tool Time canceled onSeptember 7th for Labor Day.

We're having an apparel sale!
We’ve got so many jerseys!

On Sunday August 16th, BNB will host an apparel sale for the donated clothing, new and used, that we’ve received. The sale will be at the BNB Hub from 7pm – 8:30pm and all proceeds will help cover the costs of attending the Youth Bike Summit in 2016. Jerseys, riding shorts and a limited selection of cold weather gear will be available. All items are priced $5-$20, bring cash and tell your friends!

Volunteer of the Month
Volunteer of the Month – Martinas Andruis

Martinas Andruis first got involved at Bikes Not Bombs 5 years ago. Martinas was interested in affordable housing as a right, and says that similarly all people should have access to a bicycle. Martinas is a regular at our Thursday Volunteer Nights, and helped load our last two shipments. When we are understaffed we’ve asked Martinas to step up to help lead part of the work. Outside of BNB he’s an artist doing custom painting. Thanks Martinas!

News Outside of BNB

Boston GreenFest – Learn how to have a positive impact on our world, city, neighborhoods and yourself! The largest multicultural environmental music festival is back August 21st – 23rd.

Bike Friday – Arrive by bike to City Hall Plaza on Friday August 28th between 7-9am and enjoy a free breakfast and chat with your favorite bike folks, including BNB!

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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Aggressive EZRide Driver Backed By Charles River TMA Exec October 2, 2015
      TweetThis took place recently. I wrote to EZRide Service, and they responded with the following. Ms. Tuing: Thank you for sending the video of Paul Revere Transportation bus 707, operating EZRide Shuttle in Kendall Square, Cambridge on Wednesday, September 29. … Continue reading →
    • Fairmount, Neponset And Green Links Ride On Saturday September 30, 2015
      TweetFrom the email: ——– This Saturday we will have a bike ride on the Fairmount Greenway route, along the Neponset Greenway, and learn more about how the City is working to connect Franklin Park to the harbor through the Green … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Fairmount, Neponset And Green Links Ride On Saturday (Canceled) September 30, 2015
      TweetFrom the email: ——– This Saturday we will have a bike ride on the Fairmount Greenway route, along the Neponset Greenway, and learn more about how the City is working to connect Franklin Park to the harbor through the Green … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Public Meetings About Walking And Biking Paths September 30, 2015
      TweetJoin in these DCR sponsored meetings and let your voice be heard to support more walking and biking paths. ———– From Livable Streets: Please join us for a series of public meetings where the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • 13th Annual Historic Bicycle Tour Of Middlesex Canal September 28, 2015
      TweetGot this in the email: ————- On Saturday, October 3, 2015, the Middlesex Canal Association, the Somerville Historic Preservation Commission and the Middlesex Canal Commission will sponsor the 13th annual historic bicycle tour of the Middlesex Canal.  The Canal was … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Bikes Not Bombs Announces Adult Earn A Bike September 24, 2015
      TweetThis is great news for adults looking to get into cycling but having a hard time affording a bicycle. From the email: ——- Dear Friends, Not a day goes by without a customer walking into our Bike Shop who depends … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Union Square Getting Bike Boxes September 21, 2015
      TweetThese little guys have been springing up all over the union square area.   So far…lets just say that the motorists and cyclists have not been understanding how to use them. There were two giant open boxes here, and a … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Union Square Getting Bike Boxes September 21, 2015
      TweetThese little guys have been springing up all over the union square area.   So far…lets just say that the motorists and cyclists have not been understanding how to use them. There were two giant open boxes here, and a … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Art Deco Geometric Earrings September 16, 2015
      Copper over brass.  I like the way these little guys came out. Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Ginkgo Leaf Brass Earrings September 16, 2015
        Its fall and the leaves of trees are starting to fall, saw some ginkgo leaves and was inspired to make these handsome little brass earrings. Continue reading →
      Boston Biker