Thursday, May 28, 2020 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh
today announced a series of changes to City streets as Boston continues its
planning for a phased, careful COVID-19 reopening process in the City of
Boston. Street changes will be phased in over the next several months, and in
the next two weeks the Boston Transportation Department will make improvements
that include street space allocated for expanded bus stops, new bike lanes, and
outdoor restaurant seating.
"Ensuring the safety and health of all residents
is our first priority in Boston," said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. "These
innovative streets programs focus on what residents need: safe, reliable
transportation if they must travel in Boston, access to fresh air and open
spaces, and building social and physical distancing into everyday life. As we
continue to carefully plan for reopening in Boston, we will continue our work
to create streets and transportation that work for all."
To better accommodate workers who use MBTA bus
routes, which continue to see high use by essential workers, the Boston
Transportation Department will expand bus stops at ten locations in partnership
with the MBTA, and will begin to make these changes the week of June 1st.
Blue Line Station on the median island in Maverick Square
Avenue Bus Stops (Inbound Only) at Morton Street and Woodhaven Street
Station (Northbound) Stop
Station on Congress Street
Street at Whiting Street and Moreland Street
Route 39 Bus
Stop at Fenwood Street
(Inbound) stop at L Street at Broadway
In addition, the City of Boston is enhancing
Silver Line reliability through Chinatown, and installing a bus lane on
Washington Street north of Marginal Road and by repainting the bus lane on
Installation of Bike Lanes
To help people get to work safely, the first
phase of bike lanes will focus on connecting downtown to the citywide network.
They will provide high-comfort dedicated lanes that will be attractive to new
bike riders, families, essential workers and commuters.
These quick-build lanes include:
(Beacon to Stuart)
(Charles to Berkeley)
(Arlington to Washington)
(Boylston to Beacon)
(W Newton to Stuart)
(Congress to Tremont)
(Atlantic to Congress)
(Court to Shawmut)
In addition, the City will implement scheduled
bike lanes on Washington Street (from Stuart Street to Avenue De Lafayette),
Stuart Street (Charles Street to Washington Street), and Berkeley Street
(Tremont St to Columbus Avenue).
Supporting Restaurants and
Last week, Mayor Walsh and the Licensing Board
for the City of Boston took
steps to streamline existing processes for restaurants who wish to expand
outdoor seating as part of the COVID-19 reopening process. These new processes
make it easier for restaurants to take advantage of outdoor space in Boston
when they are allowed to open under state guidelines, including issuing
a questionnaire for businesses that will be used as the starting point for
both identifying opportunities for temporary extensions onto outdoor space both
on public and private property. Over 270 businesses have already begun this
process throughout all of Boston's neighborhoods. The Transportation and Public
Works Departments are reviewing requests from the questionnaires to accommodate
outdoor dining on sidewalks and parking lanes.
Temporary street closures with barriers and
signs will also be explored as part of the outdoor seating work, and to create
better green links to parks and open spaces.
"Public space and transportation will be
key to a healthy reopening and an equitable recovery," said Chris Osgood,
Chief of Streets. "Right now, that includes making sure hospital staff and
front line workers can get to work safely and affordably, and rethinking how
Boston's streets best serve our residents. These changes to Boston's streets
are in line with Boston's transportation goals of safety, access, and
reliability, and the City's work to create a safe city for every
More information about the above changes,
including a map of all locations, is available now at boston.gov/healthy-streets, and
residents are encouraged to submit feedback on ongoing pilot programs.
Future phases will include additional bus
priority measures, continued adjustments to our curb management and enforcement
activities, more bike lanes, and new Bluebikes stations. Work continues on our
existing capital projects, including the construction of several Neighborhood
Slow Streets zones this summer. Additional information is available on boston.gov.