Archive for the ‘safety’ Tag

Driving under the influence

keysA reader recently chided me for including a drunk-driving incident in a list of Mass. Ave. crashes that killed or injured pedestrians.

In 2009, a drunk driver struck a local business owner in the Teel St. crosswalk and sent him to the hospital.

None of the other collisions involved alcohol, at least as far as we know.

But if we are honest we will admit that we are all driving under the influence.

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Town Meeting adopts ‘Complete Streets’ handily

GavelBy a vote of 157 to 32, Town Meeting last night voted to accept Chapter 90I of state law. The vote begins a process that could eventually qualify the Town for a new grants program to improve Mass. Ave. and other roadways.

The so-called Complete Streets program rewards communities for incorporating the needs of all kinds of road users (not just motorists) in street design.

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Arlington will seek Varnum crosswalk change

The Town of Arlington next week will request a second curb extension for the Mass. Ave. crosswalk where an East Arlington man died last month.

This curb cut would be modified ubto a bump out if MassDOT grants the request the Town  Manager plans to make on Monday.

This curb cut would be modified into a bump out if MassDOT grants the change order the Town Manager plans to request  on Monday.

Varnum St. is the only unsignalized crosswalk in the Mass. Ave project that is not designed to have bump-outs at both ends under current plans.

The change, which was requested by a neighborhood group, would add a bump-out at the curb cut laid last Friday in front of the Trinity baptists Church. The state Department of Transportation will rule on the request.

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Town Meeting to vote on ‘Complete Streets’ law

An incomplete street. Paul Mannix photo.

An incomplete street. Paul Mannix photo.

The Board of Selectmen is asking Town Meeting to opt into a state law that will make Arlington eligible for a new grants program for better streets.

Town Meeting action could lead to the Town’s first formal street-design policy, one requiring design features for all users.

The grant program, however, is still just a blueprint.

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East Arlington stands for Mass. Ave. safety

"Pedestrian Killed mar 2015."

Neighbors stand at the Varnum St. crosswalk on Mass. Ave. on April 13.

Dozens of East Arlington residents and others, some mourning the violent death of William Dotson in a crosswalk last month, stood for 2 hours on Mass. Ave. earlier today at places where pedestrians died after being struck by motor vehicles.
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‘Intensive’ enforcement begins on Mass. Ave.

This message, and a visible police presence, on Mass. Ave. this week.

This message accompanies a visible police presence on Mass. Ave. this week.

Arlington police are out in force on the street this week following the death of a local man struck by a car while in a Mass. Ave. crosswalk on March 22.

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Mass. Ave. traffic claims another life

William Dotson, a 91-year-old WWII veteran well known in his neighborhood, died on March 22 after being struck by a car while in the Varnum St. crosswalk on Mass. Ave. in East Arlington.

The Varnum St. Crosswalk yesterday from the sidewalk in front of the Trinity Baptist Church in East Arlington. Varnum St. is on the right.

The Varnum St. Crosswalk yesterday from the sidewalk in front of the Trinity Baptist Church in East Arlington. Varnum St. is on the right.

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Allen Street fills out

The enlarged curb at Allen Street fulfills a traffic-calming, pedestrian-friendly design.

The enlarged curb at Allen Street fulfills a traffic-calming, pedestrian-friendly design.

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The future comes east

Surveyors mark the southen end of the pedestrian cross walk at marathon St., where there will be bump-outs and a pedestrian island.

Surveyors mark the southern end of the pedestrian cross walk at Marathon St., where there will be bump-outs and a pedestrian island.

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Facts on the ground: Grafton Street

The future of Mass. Ave, in the form of orange survey marks, reached as far east as Grafton St. last week, skipping Bates Rd. and others on the way.

Orange marks show the new plan for Grafton St., which will the crossing there by half.

Orange marks show the new plan for Grafton St., which will cut the crossing there by half.

I won’t spotlight every curb change, but the reconfigured mouth of Grafton Street will create new parking and green space, and there are other points of interest.

So here’s a closer look at what is going on. (For an even closer look, click on any image.)

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Facts on the ground: Wyman St. bump-outs

The narrator of Marcel Proust’s Swann’s Way famously bites into a madeline cookie that triggers a cascade of memory.

Orange paint roughs out a curb bum-out for the relocated crosswalk at Wyman St. View is north.

Orange paint roughs out a curb bump-out for the relocated crosswalk at Wyman St. Looking north. Click for bigger.

Similarly (sort of) I experienced a wave of associations last week when I saw these marks on Mass. Ave by Wyman St. and realized I was looking at the remains of a once-impressive response to tragedy there.

The new design is an improvement, but the original plan had been even better. And the way the design changed here is the blackest mark on an otherwise impressive record of openness and transparency by the Town during the design phase.

Today, the dotted orange line shows the general shape of the bump-out at the pedestrian crossing that will be shifted there from the other side of Wyman St. as part of the new street design.

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Facts on the ground: Allen St.

This week orange street marks began to blossom on Mass. Ave. in East Arlington to indicate new curb lines, including bump-outs at crosswalks.

Work on curbs and sidewalks won’t begin until utility work is completed in the fall. However, the paint won’t fade between now and then and in some cases the markings are relevant to relocating drains and utility access holes.

Workers began marking new curb lines last week. Above, part of the change planned at Allen St.

Workers began marking new curb lines last week. Above, part of the change planned at Allen St.

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