Archive for the ‘signals’ Tag

Town to decide bus-lane fate


Back of MBTA 79 bus as it moves past stalled trafficalong the temporary bus lane demarcated with orange and white traffic cones.

Two of the three segments of the Town’s bus-priority experiment, at Lake Street and at Route 16, are continuing past the end of the pilot program last Friday, November 9.

That’s according to a November 12 announcement on the Town’s website.

The third element is the bus lane. The Town made no statements about the future of the dedicated lane, noting only that the lane, and its related parking ban, are no longer in effect.

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Arlington, Lake St. light, miss out on State funding this year

The plan to speed traffic on Lake St. by signalizing the Minuteman Path hit a speed bump this week when MassDOT declined to fund it this year.

traffic signal

Also losing out were a raft of smaller projects to benefit pedestrians, cyclists, and bus riders that were not submitted to MassDOT in order to make room for the Lake St. proposal. Continue reading

Snappy new video is vague on bicycles

Experienced cyclists, like motorists, may proceed through the intersection cautiously after stopping at the stop sign.

That explanation is one of the few things missing from the 2-minute video the Town of Arlington made to explain the new traffic signal in Arlington Center.

Source: Town of Arlington.

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Beware the HAWK

There will be no green light at the traffic signal that will regulate the new pedestrian crosswalk over Mass. Ave. in Arlington Center.

At that location, drivers and pedestrians will encounter a new kind of traffic signal unlike any in the area. The potential for confusion, and even injury, is real.

Phase-by-phase diagram of HAWK signal

There’s no green. Click for larger. Source: U.S. Federal Highway Administration

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Paint goes down, lights go on

East arlington neighbor Nawwaf Kaba photographed this work crew as it was striping Mass. Ave the morning of October 25. The view is northwest from the edge of the crosswalk in front of the CVS.

Alert East Arlington neighbor Nawwaf Kaba photographed this work crew as it was striping Mass. Ave the morning of October 24. The view is northwest from the edge of the cross walk in front of the CVS.

New lights and an off-center double line are easing drivers and others into what will be the new design on Mass. Ave.

Meanwhile, some patches of sidewalk remain unpoured while several other features, including the on-off-on-again traversable median, still have not put in an appearance.

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Lights on

The new traffic signal at Thorndike St. going in on August 13.

The new traffic signal at Thorndike St. going in on August 13.

A work crew came by this morning and erected the new traffic signals at Thorndike and Teel.

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Steampunk walk lights


The finials on the brackets and the design of the post reflect the same Victorian aesthetic of the new street lamps on Mass. Ave.

New pedestrian signals being installed as part of the Mass. Ave. project in East Arlington are architecturally similar to the Victorian-style pedestrian-scale lighting in the business district.

Those lights might almost be actual gas lamps, if one ignores the electric light source and the inaccurate configuration of ladder bars.

There is something intriguing, however, about seeing the same ornate wrought-iron motifs in an electric walk signal, as though a monorail were tricked out to resemble a steam locomotive. Think of it as the steampunk look.

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Mass. Ave. construction wakes and is everywhere

Excavating by Lake St. in sun and shade, April 28.

The dormant Mass. Ave. project stirred, flexed, and roared back to life last month, with sidewalk construction presently ongoing in 3 locations.

The sprawling sidewalk work in particular seems to confound MassDOT’s commitment made at last June’s community meeting to a construction footprint that was as small and managed as possible.

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New Mass. Ave. signal grows at Bates-Marion

Crews erect the first of several traffic signals at Marion and Bates.

Crews erect the first of several traffic signals at Marion and Bates on April 30.

The new traffic signals at Bates and Marion, which lay at the heart of the fierce opposition to the Mass. Ave. Project spearheaded by Bates Rd. neighbors, began to rise over Mass. Ave. this morning.

The new signals will make Bates and Marion the most improved intersection on Mass. Ave. for vehicular traffic, breaking up logjams on those side streets.

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Mass. Ave. work to resume March 30

Coming soon—weather permitting

Coming soon—weather permitting

The rebulding of Mass. Ave. will resume this Monday, weather permitting, roughly where it abruptly left off on on December 8, according to Mass Highway.

The news came from a notice posted on the Town’s web site last week.

Sidewalk reconstruction will pick up from Grafton Street, the easternmost point reached last fall, after related survey work and sawcutting of pavement.

In a change of plan, sidewalk work will also begin on the opposite side of the street, starting at Pond Lane. The two sidewalk projects will be “staggered to ensure that only one sidewalk on any given section of Massachusetts Avenue is under construction” at a time.

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23 seconds

StopwatchTrips along the Town’s 3-lane design for Mass. Ave. in East Arlington will take about as long as on a 4-lane alternative, according to a controversial new software model.

The Town’s consultants performed the analysis even though the Mass. DOT has found 4 lanes to be unsafe and unacceptable.

Safety aside, both designs perform similarly in terms of average trip times. That is what you would expect based on the traffic data, which show that the 3-lane design meets peak traffic as well as a 4-lane design.

Bu that’s not what you might have thought from reading the January 23 letter from the Federal Highway Administration to MassDOT.

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Mass. Highway: Bigger bike lanes, scaled-back traffic signals

Foster St. signal (Source: Town of Arlington)

Wider bicycle lanes and changes to the Thorndike and Foster traffic signals are among the suggestions made to the Town this winter by state engineers at Mass. Highway.

The agency’s written comments to the Town’s proposed 25% plans for Mass. Ave. are generally supportive and include advice and many suggestions.

The Town’s response could include changes to its plans.

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