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Category: Walk Audit

Walking in Manchester by the Sea

Walking in Manchester by the Sea

Photo credit: Dan Watkins

On one of the few beautiful days this spring, WalkBoston led a walk audit in Manchester by the Sea (MBTS) to evaluate the walking routes students use to reach Manchester Memorial Elementary School and Manchester Essex Regional Middle and High Schools. Walk audit participants included the elementary and middle/high school principals, the Town Administrator, the Cape Ann Mass in Motion Coordinator, and representatives from the police department, town departments of public works and planning, and the MBTS Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee. Together, we identified areas where pedestrian safety can be improved using low-cost traffic calming strategies.

It is worth noting that MBTS instituted a 20 mph speed safety zone within 1 mile of the MBTA commuter rail station in September 2017. While we did not record speeds on our audit, it was clear that not all drivers were respecting the 20 mph limit. Setting lower speed limits and redesigning our streets are critical to safer, more walkable communities.

Walking in Beachmont

Walking in Beachmont

 

The Beachmont Improvement Commitee, City of Revere staff, and WalkBoston conducted the first of several walk audits in the Beachmont neighborhood. The walk audits are part of the Streets for Healthy and Connected Lives program funded by the Cummings Foundation. Participants walked along Winthrop Avenue and Crescent Avenue looking at ways to make walking safer and easier for residents and children walking home from school through Cummings Square. We picked the best weather day of the week, which is hard to do during this rainy Spring!

University Avenue: Where UMass Lowell and the Acre meet

University Avenue: Where UMass Lowell and the Acre meet

WalkBoston participated in a MassDOT road safety audit on University Avenue in Lowell where city staff, MassDOT engineers, UMassLowell representative, Lowell police officers and others looked for ways to improve road safety along this main campus thoroughfare. The Pawtucket Street/University Avenue intersection is at the edge of Lowell’s Acre neighborhood. WalkBoston has been working in The Acre with a group of residents and the Coalition for a Better Acre as part of the Streets for Healthy and Connected Lives program funded by the Cummings Foundation.

The RSA was well attended, and solutions were proposed to decrease wait times for pedestrians at traffic signals, clarify travel lanes, and reduce the occurrence of “double threat” conditions — where one car waits for a pedestrian, while a second car in an adjacent travel lane continues without seeing the person crossing. We look forward to seeing these changes implemented to improve the safety of UMass Lowell students and Acre residents alike.

Lowell residents met with Councilor Nuon to talk pedestrian safety

Lowell residents met with Councilor Nuon to talk pedestrian safety

Lowell residents participating in our Streets for Walkers advocacy sessions met with Lowell City Councilor Vesna Nuon on Monday night at Coalition for a Better Acre to voice their concerns and propose intersection improvements in the Acre Neighborhood. The residents focused on the intersection of Salem/Cabot/Market streets where children cross to reach their school bus stop and fast-moving traffic disregards stop signs. Councilor Nuon, impressed with the residents’ presentations, said he would walk the site with the City’s traffic engineer and schedule another meeting with the residents to discuss next steps to making needed changes at this intersection. WalkBoston’s Streets for People advocacy sessions are funded by the Cummings Foundation.

South Boston – Dorchester Street Walk Audit

South Boston – Dorchester Street Walk Audit

WalkBoston led a South Boston, Dorchester Street walk audit with City Councilor Ed Flynn and representatives of the Andrew Square Civic Association, West Broadway Neighborhood Association and Livable Streets. The memo includes short-, medium- and long-term recommendations to include walking safety along and across the street.

View the Walk Audit Report