Archive for the ‘construction’ Tag

New Mass. Ave. trees may be work’s end

Check out the ring of fresh dark dirt around this tree on Mass. Ave.:

A newkt okabted A newly planted tree on Mass. Ave. on mass. Ave.

One of the new trees catches the chilly December 10 sun.

That dirt shows that the tree is one of many replacements planted last week by J.H. Lynch, the contractor for the Mass. Ave. Project. The trees replace those that were not planted properly or had not done well on their own in the drought.
Continue reading

Photos of the frabjous day

A utility worker prepares to transfer cables to a new pole, allowing Mass. Ave construction to finally proceed to its end. October xx photo from Aileen G. P.

A utility worker prepares to transfer cables to a new pole, allowing Mass. Ave construction to finally proceed to its end. September 28 photo from Aileen G.- P.

As previously reported, Eversource finally allowed J.F. Lynch to complete the Mass. Ave. sidewalks in East Arlington by shifting the cables from an old utility pole to a new one in Capitol Square.

Continue reading

Mass. Ave. project finally ends as Eversource twitches to life

A fresh pour near the corner of Teel St. on the evening of October 3.

A fresh pour near the corner of Teel St. on the evening of October 3.

Nearly a year after the ribbon-cutting for the Mass. Ave. Project in East Arlington, contractor J.H. Lynch isĀ  pouring concrete into the last stretches of Mass. Ave. sidewalk.

Eversource, the power company once known as Boston Edison (and then as NStar), last week shifted the last power cable from an old utility pole across from Lake Street, allowing the pole to be removed and the pouring to take place.
Continue reading

Added: Visual nudge to merge

A few licks of paint added last July direct drivers to merge as they enter Arlington westbound from Cambridge. Are they effective?

Two arrows and a dotted line point drivers left. The markings were added in late July and were not part of the original pan for the street.

Two arrows and a dotted line point drivers left. The markings were added in late July and were not part of the original pan for the street.

Continue reading

The greening of the Mass. Ave. bike lanes

Mass. Ave. got some attention last week in the form of vivid green color in 2 bike lane locations.

There's no missing the bike lane on this busy eastbound approach to Lake St.

There’s no missing the bike lane on this busy eastbound approach to Lake St. The green was added last week.

Since this marking was not specified in the final plans for the project (correction: It was so), I think it was almost certainly added by the Town.

Continue reading

‘Bricked’ flush median soaks up width

Last week, contractors put the finishing touches on the flat, traversable median on Mass. Ave. in the business district in East Arlington.

Northwest from the Marathon St. crosswalk

Northwest from the Marathon St. crosswalk

The median now sports a fake-brick treatment that is surprisingly convincing.
Continue reading

Mass. Ave. punch list grows short

checklistSpring is in the air, and the construction contractor for Mass. Ave. is finishing up and preparing to leave us to our own devices.

The punch list for this project, so many years in the making, includes traffic signals, sidewalks, and the planned median area in the business district. There are other smaller bit of work to take care of as well.

The traffic signals have, apparently, finally got signal cameras installed and activated. I believe I saw them in action on Tuesday.

The traffic light at Lake St. has always given an advanced left turn from Mass. Ave onto Lake, allowing three or sometimes four alert drivers to make that turn before an eastbound green cuts off the stream.

Continue reading

Smooth

West from the Arlington Diner.

West from the Arlington Diner.

Who’s got the smoothest ride in the Boston area?

What’s the biggest single gain to cyclists from the Mass. Ave. Project? (Hint: It isn’t the bike lanes).

Continue reading

Mass. Ave. old and new

Phil Goff, a professional transit planner who served on the design committee for the Mass. Ave. Project, gave the following remarks about the new Mass. Ave. versus the old at Saturday’s ribbon-cutting.

The ceremony was held at the foot of Grafton Street, site of one of East Arlington’s most improved pedestrian crosswalks. Click any photo for a larger view.

BEFORE: The crosswalk at Grafton St., where Lucy delGado was fatally struck in 2013.

BEFORE: The crosswalk at Grafton St., where Lucy Delgado was fatally struck in 2013. The crossing had long been troublesome.

Today the crosswalk features curb extensions, a safety island, and a lane reduction. View SW towards Orvis Rd; both photos by permission of Phil Goff.

AFTER: Today the crosswalk features curb extensions, a safety island, and a lane reduction. View SW towards Orvis Rd; both photos by Phil Goff.

As you look around, take in the new Mass Ave.

For the past 50 years, cars dominated the old Mass Ave but no more. For the past 50 years, walking across the old Mass Ave was like playing Russian Roulette but no more. For the past 50 years, bicyclists have had no space to ride on the old Mass Ave but no more.

Continue reading

Ribbon-cutting celebrates Mass. Ave. Project, though work remains

Ribbon cutting

State and local officials cut a ceremonial ribbon next to Mass. Ave, at Grafton St. Left to right: Kimberly Sloane and Peter Sutton of MassDOT, East Arlington Livable Streets Coalition Co-Coordinator Phil Goff, MassDOT Highway District 4 Director Paul Stedman, State Representative David Rodgers, Arlington Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine, Arlington Selectmen Chair Kevin Greeley, State Senator Ken Donnelly, and Commmunity Liaison Nathanial Cabral-Curtis of Howard-Stein-Hudson Associates. Selectmen Dan Dunn and Joe Curro look on from the back.

Some 75 Arlington residents and state officials gathered at the foot of Grafton Street on Saturday morning to mark the approaching completion of the Mass. Ave. project.

Although the project’s punch list will not be completed until next spring and the traffic signals are still not fully functional, the road has been essentially complete for the past 2 weeks.

Continue reading

First light

The lights come on for the first time earlier this evening. Nawwaf Kaba photo.

It’s on.

After a long delay, the troubled pedestrian-scale lights in the business district shed their first steam punk beams on East Arlington earlier this evening.

The illumination comes the night before tomorrow’s ribbon-cutting ceremony set forGrafton Street at 11 AM.

Activation of the lights, and also of all of the new controllers for the traffic signals, had been stalled by Eversource (formerly NStar) which was slow to perform necessary power hookups. Continue reading

As Mass. Ave. wraps, a personal note

Painted

Drivers get their heads around the new lane markings in Capitol Square.

It is oddly appropriate that the Mass. Ave. project is finishing up at the same moment that my ability to write about it is curtailed.

Continue reading