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Rally For Safer Streets Sept 29th!

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 28

From Livable Streets:


The program will start at 6pm sharp with City Council President Michelle Wu and Chief of Streets Chris Osgood. Show up early to meet with Councilor Wu and share your street safety concerns!

Streets are For People Rally
Thursday, September 29, 2016, 6-7pm
@ City Hall Plaza, Boston
**rally will go on rain or shine

Many of you have been helping us to spread the word via social media, thank you! Keep the momentum going so we can get the biggest crowd possible!

Together we can urge our leaders to prioritize safer options for people who walk, bike, and take transit. 

What you can do:

  1. Share this email with your friends and neighbors and encourage them to join you on September 29th!

  2. Invite 5 friends to the event:  https://www.facebook.com/events/1590398451256994/

  3. Wear yellow to the rally. Yellow is a color of solidarity for those killed or seriously injured in crashes.

  4. Spread the word via social media before and during the rally using #visionzero and #crashnotaccident

By participating in this rally you can show your continued support for Vision Zero efforts and making Boston’s streets safer to navigate — no matter how people get around.

We know that Vision Zero can save lives. We hope to see you at City Hall Plaza this Thursday!

Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition

Event Co-Hosts: WalkBoston, T4MA, TransitMatters, USPIRG, Safe Roads Alliance, MassBike, LivableStreets Alliance, DotBike, Boston Cyclists Union, StreetsPAC Boston, Walk UP Rozzie, Green Streets Initiative, Cambridge Bicycle Safety, Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition


Dear Boston City Council,

Yesterday, the Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition invited Mayor Walsh to speak at a Vision Zero rally taking place on September 29th at 6pm at City Hall Plaza. (We’ve included the invite below). We would like to invite City Council President Wu to speak at the rally, and invite all of you to be there to show your continued support for Vision Zero efforts and making Boston’s streets safer to navigate — no matter how people are getting around.

Sincerely,

Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition

WalkBoston, T4MA, TransitMatters, USPIRG, Safe Roads Alliance, MassBike, LivableStreets Alliance, DotBike, Boston Cyclists Union, StreetsPAC Boston


September 14, 2016

Mayor Martin J. Walsh
1 City Hall Square, Suite 500
Boston, MA 02201-2013

Dear Mayor Walsh,

On behalf of the Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition we would like to invite you to speak at a rally on September 29th at 6pm at City Hall Plaza, where we will gather with our friends and neighbors in solidarity with those who have been killed in traffic crashes to call for swifter action to prevent these tragedies in the future.

Specifically, we hope you will recommit to Vision Zero, the pledge to eliminate fatal and serious traffic crashes in the city by 2030, and share what actions the City will take before the end of the year to achieve the goals it set forth in the Vision Zero Action Plan released in December of 2015. Additionally, we hope that you will commit more financial resources for additional staff and capital projects to ensure that the Transportation Department has the support it needs to reach these important goals.

Committing to Vision Zero was an important first step in improving safety on our streets. Unfortunately, in the wake of a series of tragic and preventable crashes, injuries, and fatalities, including 13 pedestrians who have died so far this year in the City of Boston, it is more important than ever to focus the priority of transportation policies and projects on safety.

The status quo is not working. We desperately need to invest in the infrastructure of Boston’s streets and sidewalks — and we need your leadership to show it is the mandate of city government to prioritize safer options for people to walk, bike, take transit and drive.

Thank you for considering this invitation. We hope to see you on September 29th and look forward to working with you to accelerate progress toward achieving Vision Zero in the City of Boston.

Sincerely,

Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition

WalkBoston, T4MA, TransitMatters, USPIRG, Safe Roads Alliance, MassBike, LivableStreets Alliance, DotBike, Boston Cyclists Union, StreetsPAC Boston

The Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition advocates for the implementation of Vision Zero in Boston and for the adoption of Vision Zero throughout the metro area and state of Massachusetts. The growing coalition includes community-based organizations, nonprofits, businesses, civic groups and individuals representing communities across the state.

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 US_PIRG.png  Safe_Roads_Alliance.jpg  MassBike.jpg
 LSA_logo_cropped.PNG  Dot_Bike.png  BCU.jpg
 Streets_PAC.jpg

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Long Time Advocate Jackie DeWolfe Leaves Livable Streets

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 04

She has done a great job and will be sorely missed, her farewell letter below:


It is bittersweet to write to you that next Friday, August 12 marks my last day on staff at LivableStreets. I have been appointed Director of Sustainable Mobility at the Massachusetts Department of Transportation where I will continue to work on improving our streets, public spaces, and transit.

As I prepare for my departure, I’ve had fun reminiscing. I started volunteering at LivableStreets more than eight years ago and was immediately hooked by LivableStreets’ founders.  They were rethinking transportation and simultaneously rethinking the role of advocacy to forge new partnerships to create more livable communities.  LivableStreets instilled in me the belief that streets are our public space. Transportation options are key to quality of life because they unlock access to what you need and want.  Streets should be designed to accommodate people regardless of age or ability.

Today, LivableStreets has become what we had hoped for, a thriving organization with an active membership. I’m so proud of what we have accomplished together. I’m even more excited for what’s next for LivableStreets. We now have four full time staff, six summer staff, and hundreds of volunteers working on initiatives across Metro Boston. We have championed changing the conversation to integrate walking, biking and transit facilities into transportation projects to provide people more transportation options.

Whether you have volunteered, donated, shared your story, participated in one of our campaigns, worked at a partner organization, led efforts in your own neighborhood, spoke at a public meeting, or attended an event – thank you. When people ask, “Who makes up the LivableStreets Alliance?” the answer is you!

Together we have accomplished a lot in 8 years, but there is still a long way to go. We are at a pivotal moment as the Commonwealth and communities across the country grapple with how to improve safety, mobility, and sustainability, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and traffic. I look forward to working on these important issues in my new role, and LivableStreets will be hiring to continue to do so as well. Deputy Director Stacy Thompson who has been my co-pilot for the past year and half will step in as Interim Executive Director.

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I hope to see you before I go! LivableStreets will be hosting a goodbye party onThursday, August 11, from 6 to 8pm at Central Wharf Co, 160 Milk Street, Boston. Please come to raise a glass!  If you can’t make it, we are also hosting two summeropen houses Friday, August 5, 8-10 AM and Tuesday, August 9, 4-6 PM at LivableStreets office, 100 Sidney Street, Cambridge. Come on by!

Thank you again for a wonderful eight years.

Sincerely,

Screen_Shot_2016-08-02_at_10.14.03.png

Jackie DeWolfe

livablestreets.info


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Action Alert: Let Your Voice Be Heard For Zoning Reform

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 08

From Livable Streets:

The Senate is taking up a bill updating our zoning law for the first time in 40 years—and we need your voice to support it!

The Zoning Reform bill is the most important planning, housing, and land-use bill in years. This is a critical moment to ask for your Senator’s support! It takes just a moment.

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Transportation and housing policies are intimately connected—good policies create more livable streets and communities for everyone.

Will you click here to tell your Senator to support this important bill? It takes just a minute.

To learn more about this bill and why it’s important, read on below or click here.

The Senate will vote this Thursday, June 9th, so now is the time to act.

Thank you for speaking up!

LivableStreets Alliance
http://www.livablestreets.info/


Did you know?

Restrictive zoning is crippling our economy, health and environment. Economists estimate that restrictive zoning drives up housing prices in Greater Boston by nearly 20% and leads to a 20% decline in employment. Outdated zoning has cost our region at least 156,000 jobs.

We are building fewer than half of the homes our state needs annually to meet our current state-wide needs and prevent job loss to other states. Meanwhile, combined housing and transportation costs now eat up an average of 50% of family budgets.

At least 52% of Americans want to live in places where they do not have to use a car very often. People who live in walkable neighborhoods are twice as likely to get the exercise they need, reducing the risk of obesity and making our communities more livable.

Every day, thirteen acres of forests and farmland are lost to low-density sprawl caused by inefficient and outdated zoning, generating more traffic in addition to infrastructure costs that drain municipal budgets.

Here’s what this landmark bill does:

  • The bill will stimulate home & business development
  • Communities will increase “multi-family” zoning to build more of the homes we need.
  • Allowing homeowners to create “accessory dwelling units” on their property will enable them to create new housing for relatives or to generate rental income to help them stay in their home.
  • Special permits, which are a common approval process, would no longer require a supermajority vote.
  • Variance reforms will make it easier for property owners to make improvements.
  • Developers will have longer, more reasonable time periods to use their permits.
  • Reforming the appeals process will reduce frivolous lawsuits and lengthy court battles over development, saving time and money for local government, taxpayers, and developers.

Provides our cities and towns with the modern planning tools they need

  • Other states use a rational and predictable process to assess impact fees from development to offset the cost of infrastructure—our cities & towns should be able to do that too.
  • Local master plans will become easier and less costly to create.
  • Once a community has started to change its zoning, development rights should become protected only when an owner has more than an imprecise preliminary plan for the property.
  • Cities and towns can implement affordability requirements through inclusionary zoning.
  • Local planning and zoning board members will be able to access more training opportunities.

Preserves open space and discourages sprawl

  • Developers who want to cluster their development to conserve land will be able to do so.
  • Communities will be able to improve the design of unregulated roadside sprawl by establishing a minor subdivision ordinance.
  • Cities and towns will be able to “opt in” to additional tools and benefits if they meet state standards for compact housing and economic development while protecting open space and water quality.
  • Natural Resource Protection Zoning is a new tool to preserve large and important resource areas.

Promotes public health

  • Development project notices are required to be sent to local health boards.
  • Accessory dwelling units are a critical need for families who need to take care of older relatives or those with disabilities.
  • Easier master planning, required multi-family districts in smart growth locations, cluster by-right subdivision, and the opt-in program will all encourage communities to become more compact and walkable.
  • Reforming “Approval Not Required” subdivisions will help reduce the number of driveways that front on busy streets and improve public safety.

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Action Alert: Speak Up For A Safer Mass. Ave. June 15th

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 08

From Livable Streets:

Now is the time to speak up for a safer Massachusetts Ave!

Next Wednesday, June 15 the City of Boston is holding a community meeting to share proposed design improvements for Massachusetts Avenue from Beacon Street to Harrison Avenue.

This is a critical meeting. We’ve been waiting for this since the City first announced Mass Ave as a Vision Zero priority corridor last December.

The City’s goal is to use the feedback from this meeting to make safety improvements to Mass Ave this year.

Vision Zero Priority Corridor Mass Ave Public Meeting
June 15, 2016, 6pm – 7:30pm
@ Saint Cecilia Parish, 18 Belvidere St, Boston

We know that improving Mass Ave will save lives. Will you join us on June 15th?

This project is an important step in bringing the number of fatalities on our streets to zero and has the potential to be a model street for other safety improvements throughout Boston.

We’ll follow up with more details about the meeting early next week. In the meantime you can:

  1. Mark your calendar for June 15 and plan on attending the meeting.
  2. Share this email with your friends and neighbors and encourage them to join you.

Thank you for making our streets safer and more livable for everyone!


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Livable Streets March Update

Written by Boston Biker on Mar 09

Lots of good stuff From Livable Streets:

 

peak up for the Greenline Extension and Community Path

images.jpegSpeak up to remind MassDOT, the MBTA and the Governor that we need a fully functional Green Line Extension and the integrated Community Path project.

MassDOT and the MBTA have scheduled five public meetings to receive public input/suggestions on ways to reduce the cost of construction for these projects.

Construction of the Green Line Extension and Community Path will provide long needed air quality, public health, transportation and economic development improvements for our communities.

 

Attend ones of these meetings and remind MassDOT, the MBTA and the Governor that we need these very important projects:

 

Upcoming Public Meetings on the Green Line Extension
Meeting times:

Open House: 5:30pm – 6:30 pm
Presentation and Q&A: 6:30 pm – 8:00pm

  • March 2: Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Avenue – Somerville
  • March 23: Tufts University, 51 Winthrop Street – Medford
  • April 13: Argenziano School, 290 Washington Street – Somerville
  • April 27: St. Anthony’s Parish Hall, 400 Cardinal Medeiros Avenue – Cambridge
  • May 5th: St. Clement’s Parish Hall, 579 Boston Avenue – Medford

MBTA late night service cut, but fare increases still in play

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We are disappointed to report that the MBTA Control Board voted 4-0 yesterday to cancel late night service. While this is an unfortunate development, we were inspired by the hundreds of impassioned advocates who packed the meeting room to speak up for better transit.

Next week the MBTA control board will vote on possible fare increases. We hope that they will seriously consider the overwhelming public support for keeping fare increases at or below 5% in their vote next Monday, March 7.

We will be there next week for this important vote and keep you up-to-date over the next few weeks as the Control Board considers cost saving measures for the Greenline extension.

 


New Emerald Network website launched!

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Since launching the Emerald Network in September 2015, we’ve made strides toward achieving our vision of a 200-mile seamless network of greenways across Metro Boston.

To highlight this important initiative we’ve launched a brand new website:www.emeraldnetwork.info.

On the new Emerald Network website you can:

  • Learn about the progress we’ve made and see some examples of in-progress and future project to complete the network

  • Apply for the Greenway Partners Program, to request capacity-building support to advance a proposed greenway project

  • Sign up to receive email updates specific to the Emerald Network

We hope you’ll take a few moments to learn more by exploring thewebsite!


LivableStreets and Vision Zero featured on PRI’s “The World”

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LivableStreets’ Stacy Thompson hit the streets of Boston last week with Brendan Kearney of WalkBoston and PRI “The World” reporter Jason Margolis to talk about safety on our streets. At the corner of Mass Ave and Beacon Street the trio discussed the hurdles and hopes for Boston’s commitment to Vision Zero.

“What does Boston have to learn? It already is one of the safest major cities in the US. Still, you’re about three times more likely to be killed on the roads in Boston — walking, cycling or traveling in a car — than in Stockholm.”

Click here to hear how Stacy and Brendan answered this question and learn more about Sweden’s successful campaign to dramatically reduced traffic crashes.


I-90 Interchange project prompts bigger questions about connectivity and livability

10391835_10153512308923111_972039618001533192_n.jpgOn Sunday the Boston Globe highlighted the need to look toward the future and prioritize transit and broader connectivity for the proposed West Station – an important piece of the I-90 interchange project. The following evening Brookline residents packed a Transportation Board meeting to learn about the 1-90 project and how it might impact their community.

LivableStreets Advocacy Committee member Ari Ofsevit presented an alternative design to MassDot’s current proposal that prioritizes people, place-making and better options for walking, biking and transit. Many of the residents highlighted the need for better buses and better connections to Boston and Cambridge.

Given the enormous long-term impact of this project, we can’t agree more with the Globe, “it’s not too soon to decide what the basic purpose of West Station ought to be — a 21st-century multimodal transportation center, or just another commuter rail stop.”


MA Bike Safety Forum re-cap

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The room was packed with people who care about making biking safer at Suffolk University last Tuesday night, as bicyclists gathered with legislators, policy makers, and stakeholders to talk about changing state laws to make cycling safer. Representatives from the trucking industry, Boston, Cambridge, the Carmen’s Union and the MBTA gave brief presentations followed by breakout sessions where ideas for possible legislation were presented.

LivableStreets’ Board members Steve Miller and Megan Ramey each led a break-out session engaging attendees in discussion around lowering speed limits and safe bicycle crossings. At the conclusion of the event attendees were asked to vote on their preferred solution for better bike safety.

Senator William Brownsberger posted the results of the survey on his website in “Bike Safety Forum Take Aways–?” and is requesting additional public input. You can comment on the event’s website mabikesafety.com.


Opportunties

Join LivableStreets’ Advocacy Committee

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LivableStreets Advocacy Committee is tracking more than 90 street projects in Metro Boston and we need your help! The group meets once monthly and consists of new and seasoned advocates working together to tackle issues big and small. Joining the Advocacy Committee is a great way to keep up to date on key projects and initiatives, learn from our volunteer advocates who’ve won dozens of campaigns (like bringing down the Casey Overpass, securing the new design for Comm Ave!) and share your ideas for better streets in your neighborhood.

Please contact [email protected] to learn more and get involved.

Sincerely,
LivableStreets Alliance

livablestreets.info


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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Cambridge Police Searching For Man Who Pushed Cyclist Off Her Bike September 29, 2016
      TweetHave you seen this guy?  He apparently shoved a woman off her bike while she was riding through Inman on the 22nd. More here.
      Boston Biker
    • Two Hubway Stations Moved September 28, 2016
      TweetHappened last week, but if you haven’t noticed yet this might affect your commute. From Hubway: Stations to move after rush hour on September 22nd Effective Thursday morning, at 10am on September 22nd, after the morning commute rush, the two Hubway … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Submit Comments On Morrissey Blvd. Redesign September 28, 2016
      TweetFrom DotBike: Submit your comments re reconstruction of Morrissey Boulevard! And don’t forget to copy your State Rep and State Senator so they know what’s important to you. Www.wheredoivotema.com is where you can check who yours are. Department of Conservation … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Submit Comments On Morrissey Blvd. Redesign September 28, 2016
      TweetFrom DotBike: Submit your comments re reconstruction of Morrissey Boulevard! And don’t forget to copy your State Rep and State Senator so they know what’s important to you. Www.wheredoivotema.com is where you can check who yours are. Department of Conservation … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Rally For Safer Streets Sept 29th! September 28, 2016
      TweetFrom Livable Streets: The program will start at 6pm sharp with City Council President Michelle Wu and Chief of Streets Chris Osgood. Show up early to meet with Councilor Wu and share your street safety concerns! Streets are For People … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • As Cycling Grows Cambridge Proactive In Education September 25, 2016
      TweetThe City of Cambridge is handing out a copy of the bike laws to all the residents (including incoming Harvard students).  Education is a key component in preventing bike accidents, and I am glad they are passing it out to … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Save The Date: Biketoberfest 2016! September 8, 2016
      TweetFrom the BCU   Thursday, October 13th in Somerville! It’s that time of year again! Join us for a celebration of local breweries, bike-powered businesses and a year of victories for safer streets and better biking in the Boston area! … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • A Simple Sign Change Could Make A Huge Difference September 8, 2016
      TweetSomerville has already started using this new language, Boston has in some cases, but its time to make this the standard. From Road.cc Signs treat cyclists ‘less like potential hazards and more like the legal road users that they are’ … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • DotBike September Update September 8, 2016
      TweetDotBike has been busy! From the email: Dear Dot Bikers,   As we move from sweaty- to sweater-weather biking I hope you’re enjoying your riding! Thanks to many of you who have joined us for #DorchestertoDowntown Bike Friday group commutes … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Bikes Not Bombs Update September 8, 2016
      TweetFrom the email: September 2016 Volunteer or Join with Youth Programs this Fall! Adult Instructor Training starts on Monday! Are you interested in volunteering to help with bike repair and ride marshaling within Earn-A-Bike? Learn more and apply on our … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker