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Tag: runnerfriendly

Endorsing Somerville as a Runner Friendly Community

Endorsing Somerville as a Runner Friendly Community

August 31, 2016

Road Runners Club of America

1501 Lee Hwy, Ste 140

Arlington, VA 22209

To whom it may concern:

WalkBoston is a non-profit pedestrian advocacy organization that has worked for over 26 years in communities across Massachusetts to make walking and running safer and easier to encourage better health, a cleaner environment and vibrant communities. We are writing to endorse Somerville MA to be designated a “Runner Friendly Community” by the Road Runners Club of America.

Somerville is the most densely populated municipality in New England and is constantly looking for more ways to create safe spaces and travel options for residents. In 2014, Somerville was the first community in Massachusetts to pass a Complete Streets ordinance. (More than 50 communities have followed.) A “Complete Street” is one that provides safe and accessible options for all travel modes – walking, running, biking, taking transit, or driving – for people of all ages and abilities.

Somerville has a wonderful asset for people walking and running: the Community Path, a multi-use paved trail through the middle of Davis Square (one of the main commercial centers). The crosswalks for the path at the crossing of Cameron Avenue, Holland Avenue, Willow Avenue and Cedar Street are all raised to sidewalk level, showing that people walking and running on the path have priority at these crossings. The Community Path continues beyond Davis Square through Cambridge and Arlington where it becomes the Minuteman Bikeway, which stretches on to Lexington and Bedford, allowing for 10+ miles of running along the trail. Additionally, there are plans to extend the path an additional 1.9 miles to Boston, which would connect the network of pathways that line the Charles River.

This past March, WalkBoston collaborated with the Somerville Road Runners, the Somerville Police Department and Alderman Jack Connolly to present a free Runner Safety Panel for community members. The panelists shared experience and tips on personal and traffic safety, and gathered feedback from the crowd about ways Somerville could be made even better for people running and walking.

At the WalkBoston 25th anniversary celebration in 2015, we recognized the City of Somerville, Mayor Curtatone and many community partners for the work that has been happening to make Somerville a more livable place. The Mayor said it best: “the greatest benefit of walkability is perhaps the hardest to measure, but easiest to identify: it creates community.” We hope that RRCA will recognize Somerville for the welcoming community it is continuing to create with this award, and that it will encourage Somerville and other Massachusetts communities to keep making streets and intersections safer for all users.

Best regards,

Brendan Kearney

Communications Manager

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Boston: South End Running Route

Boston: South End Running Route

The South End is a favorite of locals and visitors. It’s a compact, lively neighborhood that is easy to access from Downtown, Back Bay, and many hotels and tourist destinations. Running or walking along the flat, shady streets of the South End, you’ll be charmed by this “historic district”—the largest group of Victorian structures in the country. Long an immigrant neighborhood, the South End still retains its diversity. Its distinctive architecture is invigorated by an array of unique restaurants, art galleries clothing and furniture shops. The streets of the South End are flat, much like the Back Bay; both areas were created by filling in tidal marshes. Unlike the legendary crooked streets of Downtown, South End streets were laid out in a grid pattern, making it easier to get around.

Click for “WalkBoston’s South End Running Routes” PDF