Tag: Lowell

Streets for People resident group meets with City Staff in Lowell

Streets for People resident group meets with City Staff in Lowell

WalkBoston conducted its third Streets for People training session in Lowell with the Coalition for a Better Acre and Acre neighborhood residents on Thursday, July 31. City Transportation staff joined us and presented three street-redesign projects near our study area in the Acre neighborhood that will make walking safer. The designs include enhanced crosswalks, dedicated green buffers for sidewalks, and pedestrian signals. It was great to hear about the City’s commitment to walkability and interest in resident concerns regarding safer streets. The group then visited the two most dangerous intersections based on WalkBoston’s pedestrian crash data analysis, and measured vehicle speed and pedestrian signal timing. We already came up with recommendations that the City will consider. We look forward to continuing our conversations with the City as our training program continues. Streets for People is funded by the Cummings Foundation.

A group of participants measuring the pedestrian signal timing





WalkBoston/EOPSS Pedestrian Safety Initiative

WalkBoston/EOPSS Pedestrian Safety Initiative

The WalkBoston/EOPSS Pedestrian Safety Planning Initiative builds municipal staff understanding and awareness of the components of a safe walking environment. The initiative addresses walking safety concerns in Massachusetts communities with high pedestrian crash rates, with the goal of reducing pedestrian fatalities and serious injuries in the Commonwealth. Communities selected for participation in the initiative include: Barnstable, Chelsea, Chicopee, Framingham, Leominster, Lowell, Peabody, Randolph, Saugus, Springfield, and Yarmouth.

Cities and towns participating in the Pedestrian Safety Planning Initiative have used the results to prioritize pedestrian improvements, negotiate infrastructure fixes into development approvals, and apply for funding sources, such as from the MassDOT’s Complete Streets Funding Program.

WalkBoston conducts a walk audit focused on high pedestrian crash locations.  A walk audit provides on-street, tangible learning opportunities for diverse groups of municipal staff, including police, as well as residents and other community-based groups. During the audit, we assess pedestrian infrastructure conditions and recommend built environment improvements that promote safety. Walk audits are also an effective means to build local constituencies for pedestrian safety efforts that include increased education and awareness opportunities for all road users, and greater attention to safety in local roadway design and maintenance efforts.

Participation in this EOPSS/WalkBoston Initiative has increased the awareness and readiness of municipal staff to adopt and implement complete streets policies and designs that will reduce fatal and injury crashes for all road users (including pedestrians, motorists and bicyclists) as called for under MassDOT’s Complete Streets Funding Program.

Check out WalkBoston funder Bill Cummings’ new book “Starting Small and Making It Big”

Check out WalkBoston funder Bill Cummings’ new book “Starting Small and Making It Big”

Last summer, WalkBoston was fortunate enough to receive a $100,000 grant from the Cummings Foundation to fund our work to train and empower residents to be change agents for safe streets. Earlier this month, we kicked things off with a Ped101 Training Session and neighborhood walk audit in Lowell with the Coalition for A Better Acre. We’re excited to engage with people that want to make their communities more walkable!

The Cummings Foundation’s $100K for 100 program supports nonprofits that are not only based in but also primarily serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties – the area where the Foundation owns commercial buildings, all of which are managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate Cummings Properties. Want to know more about the people behind the Foundation? We’d encourage you to check out Bill Cummings’ newly published autobiography, “Starting Small and Making It Big,” in which he shares his story and the dedication to giving back to the communities and institutions so vital to his success.

Lowell – High Street Walk Assessment

Lowell – High Street Walk Assessment

On Tuesday, September 19, 2017, WalkBoston conducted a walk audit on High Street with support from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS) Pedestrian Safety Planning Initiative for High-Fatality Communities. The goal of the walk assessment was to recommend improvements to the local built environment that improve pedestrian safety. The City Engineer, as well as staff from the Police Department, Planning Department, Pedestrian and Bicycle Committee/Mass in Motion, and Economic Development Department attended the audit. A list of attendees is included in Appendix A.

Read the full report here:

Lead a Jane’s Walk this May in your neighborhood

Lead a Jane’s Walk this May in your neighborhood


Jane’s Walk is happening the first weekend of May (5th-6th-7th).
Last year, 1,000+ walks happened all over the globe!

Think of this as an opportunity to:

  • start a conversation with your neighbors,
  • continue highlighting safety issues that have been identified through initiatives like Boston’s Neighborhood Slow Streets application process
  • get outside and enjoy a weekend in May!

Create your walk idea on Janeswalk.org, or get in touch with us at WalkBoston (contact Brendan!). We’re happy to help you or your neighbors with suggestions, promote your walk, and answer any questions you may have.
We look forward to helping you get out walking!

Edit: We’ll add neighborhoods/cities/towns below that will be hosting walks on this post (and include links to the separate walks within the communities as we find out about them.) 

Boston – West End – “Jane’s Walk West End Tour”
Meet at the West End Museum
Saturday, May 6, 2pm

Boston – West Roxbury – “West Roxbury Walk Audit”
Meet at the Hastings Street Lot
Saturday, May 6, 2pm

Boston – Jamaica Plain – “Growing the City: Washington St from Forest Hills to Green St”
Meet at Brassica Kitchen & Cafe
Sunday, May 7, 11am

Boston – Roslindale – “Roslindale Gateway Path & proposed Blackwell Path Extension”
Meet at SE corner of the Arboretum (look for Walk UP Roslindale Banner)
Sunday, May 7, 1pm

Cambridge – “The Dense Layers of History in Old Cambridge”
Meet at Out of Town News Kiosk, Harvard Square
Saturday, May 6, 10:30am

Worcester – Jane Week (May 1 – 7, 2017) gives Worcester residents and visitors a chance to connect to each other, explore Worcester by foot and participate in interesting discussions on how we can enhance the design and function of our city. – 20+ events and walks throughout Worcester.

Lowell – “Labor Movement in Lowell”
Meet at Lowell National Park Visitor Center, 246 Market St
Saturday, May 6, 10:30am

Dedham – “Walking Tour of Proposed Dedham Heritage Rail Trail”
Meet at the parking lot by the football field/track on Whiting Ave
Sunday, May 7, 4:00pm
Saturday, May 13, 10:00am

Somerville – “A Metamorphosis of Industrial Buildings Along the Rails”
Kickoff to Somerville’s Preservation Month, ending at Aeronaut Brewery
Saturday, May 13, 9:30am

Boston – Jamaica Plain – “Walking Tour of Monument Square”
July 1 & August 19, 12:45pm