In The News

BostInno   |  May 14, 2015   |  By Nick DeLuca
The Case For More Car-Free Zones in Downtown Boston "A unifying theme is slowing things down so it is safer for all users, reclaiming/opening alleys to connect the city more and eliminating large blocks," said Brendan Kearney, spokesperson for pedestrian advocacy group WalkBoston. Read More
Boston City Council Minutes   |  May 13, 2015   |  By City Councilor Michelle Wu
Boston City Council Official Resolution - Ann Hershfang Day Official Resolution OFFERED BY CITY COUNCILOR Michelle Wu WHEREAS: Ann Hershfang was born on May 1, 1935; and Ann and her husband Herbert purchased their home on West Rutland Square in the South End in 1965 and have been fixtures in the local community ever since; and WHEREAS: Ann and Herbert raised their two daughters, Rachel and Jennifer, in the South End and contributed greatly to the Boston Public Schools as active parents at the Rice-Bancroft School; and WHEREAS: In the 1970’s Ann became the first woman appointed to the Board of the Massachusetts Port Authority because of her transportation policy work as a member of the League of Women Voters, Ann was instrumental in defeating the proposed South-End By-Pass Road, and, while Massachusetts under-Secretary of Transportation and Construction, in causing the substituted railroad tracks to be placed underground and the creation over it of the Southwest Corridor Park; and WHEREAS: Ann has shown lifelong dedication to her neighborhood of the South End, the Southwest Corridor and the City of Boston as a community advocate, volunteer and founder and board member of WalkBoston, among many other endeavors; Be it Therefore RESOLVED: That the Boston City Council hereby expresses its congratulations and best wishes for continued success, that this Resolution be duly signed by the President of the City Council and attested to and a copy thereof transmitted by the Clerk of City of Boston; and Be It Further RESOLVED: That the Boston City Council, in meeting assembled, hereby declares May 1, 2015 ANN HERSHFANG DAY IN THE CITY OF BOSTON Read More
Belchertown Sentinel   |  May 7, 2015   |  By Aimee M. Henderson
A walking audit Senior citizens leant a helping hand – actually feet – last week as they participated in a walk audit of the corridor from the Town Common to the courthouse through Healthy Hampshire and funding through the Mass Councils on Aging and Mass in Motion. A group of 19 adults, aged 55+, gathered at the Belchertown Council on Aging on Friday morning to hear from Sarah Bankert, coordinator at Healthy Hampshire, and Stacey Beuttell, program director at WalkBoston. Bankert, who has now appeared in front of the Planning Board, Board of Selectmen and Health Board in town to talk about Healthy Hampshire, talked with the volunteer walkers about why the audit was being done, as well as answered questions regarding her organization. She told them the focus group is part of a longer process focused on creating a community vision and recommendations for increasing pedestrian accessibility in the State Street/Route 202 corridor. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Apr 15, 2015   |  By Steve Annear
Bostonians answer mayor’s call for acts of kindness Mayor Martin J. Walsh encouraged residents to carry out random acts of kindness across the city Wednesday to commemorate the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings on the second anniversary of the terror attack, and inaugurate a new tradition called “One Boston Day.” For members of Walk Boston, a pedestrian advocacy group, that meant sprucing up crosswalks to make travel by foot safer for those heading to work in the morning. Brendan Kearney, Walk Boston’s communications manager, used spray chalk Wednesday to outline two faded and forgotten crosswalks on School Street, restoring their ability to usher pedestrians across the road and slow down drivers who typically barrel down the busy street. “They were almost completely faded, so we just wanted to repair the crosswalks to make them more visible for drivers, so they knew pedestrians would be crossing there,” Kearney said. Kearney said Walk Boston’s plan worked and as motorists approached the impromptu crosswalks, they pumped the brakes. Members of the group stood on the street corner holding brightly colored signs, and cheered for drivers who let pedestrians pass. “Some of the drivers gave us the thumbs-up or honked,” he said. Read More
Jamaica Plain Patch   |  Apr 13, 2015   |  By Mike Bednarsky
Boston Marathon 2015 Runner Profile: Kevin Handly, of Jamaica Plain Kevin is running in the Boston Marathon for the fifth time. Boston Marathon 2015 Runner Profile: Kevin Handly, of Jamaica Plain Name: Kevin Handly Age: 62 Profession: I am a corporate and bank regulatory attorney. Marathon experience: This will be my 5th Boston Marathon, my 8th overall. Reason for running: I run the Boston Marathon because I can, because Susan Hurley and all my other charity team running mates are doing it, because I don’t have tickets to the Red Sox game that day and because there is no better, more joyful way to celebrate living in this great city of ours. This is one of the greatest athletic events in the world and I have a chance to participate as a competitor. Charity: I’m running for the charity WalkBoston, which is dedicated to promoting pedestrian activity, safety, access and awareness throughout Massachusetts. Click here to view the charity page and/or to make a donation. Training tip: If your knees will permit it, it’s never too late to start training for the Boston Marathon. Run for a charity you believe in and you will find great meaning and great friends in your life. Bib number: 16852 Read More
Somerville Times   |  Apr 3, 2015   |  By Mayor Joseph Curtatone
Walkability creates community Somerville was honored at WalkBoston’s 25th anniversary gala last week, where I accepted a Golden Shoe Award on behalf of all our community partners who have worked tirelessly to advocate and help us build a walkable community. We are committed to making Somerville the most walkable, bikeable, transit-accessible city in the nation, and the data behind walkable neighborhoods make the benefits clear. Transportation costs for families are lower, while sales for local businesses are higher. By giving people the option of not having to use their cars to run errands, air pollution goes down while our residents’ personal health gets better as they choose to walk more. And the greatest benefit of walkability is perhaps the hardest to measure, but easiest to identify: it creates community. Read More
Bay State Banner   |  Mar 6, 2015   |  By Sandra Larson
City pursues improvements for elderly residents Many at the forum were people working for elder-serving organizations or advocating for a more accessible city overall. Wendy Landman of WalkBoston suggested the city should form a cross-department working group that includes Elder Services, the Boston Transportation Department and the Commission on Disabilities to examine crosswalk improvements, slow zones and lowered speed limits. Read More
WGBH   |  Feb 22, 2015   |  By Rupa Shenoy
Boston's Snowed-Over Sidewalks Create A Mess For Pedestrians Kearney’s point is the situation isn’t safe for the guy with the stroller, or really any pedestrians these days. Unshoveled or half-shoveled sidewalks and tall mounds of snow blocking sidewalks from intersections make difficult obstacle courses for the most able-bodied. Everyone from walkers to people in wheelchairs are forced out onto the streets, and then forced to scatter when cars appear. Read More   |  Feb 6, 2015   |  By Adam Vaccaro
Six Takeaways From Boston’s First Community Meeting on 2024 Olympic Bid Transit improvement is a hot topic. Perhaps this was exacerbated by the horrible week on the T, but many members of the audience focused on the opportunity for improved infrastructure. Davey, whose last job was as the state’s secretary of transportation, eagerly took most of those questions on. At least two people at the meeting suggested Boston 2024’s transportation plans don’t go far enough, and that the group should utilize the Olympics bid to connect North and South stations by rail—long on the wishlist of transit activists. Another person said that officials should consider working new track for the Green Line into the bid. Others spoke for the potential added water transportation should the games come, and pedestrian improvements. Davey at one point suggested that a representative from WalkBoston, which focuses on making Boston more walkable, get in touch after the meeting lest he “nerd out” for too long on the topic. Read More
The Boston Globe   |  Feb 5, 2015   |  Editorial Staff
Get it right for pedestrians after big snowfalls BOSTON PRIDES itself on being a walkable city, but if that’s to be true in the winter, City Hall needs to pay more attention to getting the pedestrian details right. With more bad weather looming, that should be one big takeaway from this winter’s first two big storms. At times when the MBTA is turning in another of its late and lamentable storm performances and driving in the city is nightmarish, foot travel is an alternative the city should work hard to enable. But there City Hall has fallen down on the job. For those on foot, the last week has proved almost as frustrating as it has been for motorists and public-transit-takers. One problem has been the uncleared median islands. Those areas, which divide traffic lanes and frequently sit between sections of crosswalk, have been neglected across wide swaths of the city. That has left walkers to make their way, single file, through a narrow, sometimes icy, sometimes slushy rut tramped down by other pedestrians. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Feb 4, 2015   |  By Megan Johnson
Northern Avenue bridge closure felt by businesses, residents For Seaport-area bars and restaurants that relied on the Old Northern Avenue Bridge for a constant stream of patrons on foot, the bridge’s shutdown in December has put something of a damper on things. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Feb 3, 2015   |  By Meghan E. Irons and Andrew Ryan
As complaints mount, Walsh firm on Patriots parade Brendan Kearney, communications manager for WalkBoston, a nonprofit group dedicated to improving walking conditions, urged parade spectators to use caution. “It’s going to be difficult for pedestrians to even walk down the sidewalks, let alone try to see over giant snow mounds,’’ Kearney said. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Feb 2, 2015   |  By Steve Annear
Snow-covered sidewalks, cleanup complicate parade plans As if it wasn’t enough to clear Boston’s streets after two major snow storms, municipal workers now must prepare a parade route to bring the champion New England Patriots on a victory ride through the city — an undertaking that has some worried about pedestrian safety. Read More
Living on Earth   |  Nov 28, 2014   |  By Jake Lucas
Building Complete Streets On a bright Tuesday morning, in Boston’s western neighborhood of Allston, a small group of locals with picket signs crowds onto a little wedge of concrete. They’re standing on Cambridge Street, right where a highway on-ramp splits off from the fiercely busy six-lane road that has been a sore point for years. Read More
The Herald News   |  Oct 27, 2014   |  By Herald News Editorial Board
Our View: Fixing Fall River's sidewalks The senior champions program is a good community partnership aimed at addressing a big problem in clear view that has been neglected as people zip by in their cars. No road maintenance program in the city can be complete without also ensuring safer pedestrian travel. Read More
Fall River Herald   |  Oct 25, 2014   |  By Deborah Allard
Pounding the Pavement, Seniors study city's sidewalk conditions Drivers whizzing through intersections and over city streets may complain of potholes, but some of Fall River's sidwalks could rival even the deepest of road craters. Walkers, especially the elderly and disabled, can attest to the sometimes deplorable conditions of city sidewalks. "There's nothing like getting out of the car and walking," said Julie Kelly, coordinator of Mass in Motion, who implemented a project to audit city neighborhoods that get the most foot traffic.
Brookline Tab   |  Oct 20, 2014   |  By Staff
Teens, seniors wanted to measure traffic speeds in Brookline Seniors and teens walk more than other people, according to WalkBoston. Many teens walk because they are too young to drive or don’t have access to cars. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Aug 19, 2014   |  By Nestor Ramos
Most Boston pedestrian accidents go unreported Data that would provide a clearer picture of pedestrian safety in Boston do exist. Following a series of requests from the Globe, Boston police and Emergency Medical Services released internal data that showed that the agencies each responded to more than 750 pedestrian accidents in 2013 alone, nearly as many as the state has on record for Boston in the previous three years combined. “Understanding what’s going on is important before you come up with solutions,” Landman said. Read More
Boston Globe   |  Aug 19, 2014   |  By Nestor Ramos
In Chelsea, top crash cluster gets a closer look The places in Massachusetts where pedestrians are most often injured by motor vehicles have a few things in common, specialists and advocates say: more people and more cars, of course, but also the very thing that makes Greater Boston so pedestrian-friendly — high-use public transportation stops. “We see transit stops as being big pedestrian attractors,” said Gabe Rousseau, manager of the Federal Highway Safety Administration’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Program. “It’s quite possible that you would have more crashes there, but given the high volumes of pedestrians there, you might have a lower rate,” said Rousseau. Read More
Wicked Local   |  Jul 30, 2014   |  By Matthew M. Robare
Allston, Brighton residents rally for safer Cambridge Street Standing on a little triangle of raised asphalt with around 30 other people at a WalkBoston and Livable Streets Alliance rally Tuesday morning, one became conscious that the only "protection" from the cars and trucks rushing by at over 35 mph was a bit of paint on the pavement. The rally was held where the on ramp for the Massachusetts Turnpike peels off from Cambridge Street. There's a stop for the 64 bus from Oak Square to Kendall Square and a 26 year-old man, whose name has not been released, was hit and killed crossing the Pike entrance trying to get to it on July 17. But the whole stretch of Cambridge Street, from its intersection with Brighton Avenue and North Beacon Street in Union Square to the spaghetti junction with the Pike and Soldier's Field Road, has been the site of numerous pedestrian and cyclist fatalities. Read More