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Old 07-06-2013, 03:10 PM   #21
matredsoxfan
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Re: General Infrastructure

How do people think the DOT's plan for Cambridge Street Overpass keeps it a divided highway? For anyone who does not know the DOT's plan is to replace the existing concrete bridge deck and clean and paint the structural steel as well as replace deteriorated pieces of steel.The new layout will consist of a .....
- 10' Sidewalk on one side
- 9' Sidewalk on the other
- 6' Wide Bike lanes
- 3' Wide buffer lane between travel and bike lane
- (2) 11' Travel Lanes in each dirrection
- 6' Wide Median

I know its not a divided highway but I am with the DOT on a fence on that median. I travel this bridge alot and because the elevation at the approaches its hard to see people crossing until you reach the top of the bridge. Putting planters will not prevent jaywalking. A fence will. You want to make the fence a nice pretty fence with lights go for it. Also the bike groups leave out the fact the DOT is building a Multi-use path to connect to the Lincoln Street Pedestrain overpass. As part of the project the deck of the pedestrian overpass will be repaired and the steel will be cleaned and painted.

I know its not a divided highway but its still a major road carrying alot of traffic between Cambridge and Allston. The DOT has a good plan and I hope they don't change it.

Anyhow the Project design is 100% Complete. The project will be put out to bid in 60-90 days. THIS IS NOT THE TIME TO CHANGE THE DESIGN!
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Old 07-06-2013, 03:15 PM   #22
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Originally Posted by The EGE View Post
The Fast 14 and similar projects (like the Fairmount Line bridges) are all plug-and-play pieces. They literally truck the completed new bridge in and drop it onto pre-made concrete abutments. It's limited in the size and type of bridges you can do it with - plus you have to be able to get the prefab bridge to the site which is easier said than done on Massachusetts roads.

That only works with bridges that you can build offsite, though. Stuff like the Tobin is just sheer man-hours.

That said, I think one-weekend replacements are the way of the future. There's a lot of bridges over the Pike and 128 that are begging for the same thing.

Most of the Pike Extension bridges are hitting the magic 50-year end of useful life mark within 2 years. There are a lot of them like Comm Ave. and Beacon St. that are literally crumbling beneath your feet. B line has constant speed restrictions popping up over the Pike every spring when potholes chew up the concrete. Expansion joints on Beacon and the 128 interchange are getting all out of alignment are going to start wrecking mufflers at some point.


Hopefully when they rebuild those they'll shift the abutments a bit to allow for more contiguous stretches of breakdown lane. And the Beacon St. one needs to be raised slightly to allow clearance for future electrification on the Worcester Line (wires wouldn't clear a bi-level coach without arcing and railbed can't be undercut there because of the Green Line tunnel directly below).
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Old 07-07-2013, 04:19 PM   #23
Kahta
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Originally Posted by F-Line to Dudley View Post
Well, in the case of the Tobin it's environmental regs. You can't just scrape off several tons of rusting old lead paint and let if flake away into the water below. They have to use double the protection that would normally be used for, say, road-over-road bridge to prevent contamination. That's why it took for freaking ever to repaint the Braga Bridge.
Don't forget that they also discovered that the pipes that were supposed to supply water to fire trucks in the event of an emergency were completely corroded.
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Old 07-07-2013, 04:22 PM   #24
Matthew
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Re: General Infrastructure

Anyone who yaps the word "jaywalking" is someone who doesn't give a shit about pedestrians or the neighborhood. The attitude is "if you're on foot, your time is not important. Only drivers are important. Here's a 'fuck you' fence for your trouble."

"Jaywalking" is an imaginary crime invented by motorists to discriminate against people who are using the public realm open space but not inside of a two ton vehicle. The people who are most vulnerable get blamed.

As for Cambridge Street, a signalized crosswalk at Linden Street would satisfy most of the desire lines, would be plenty visible, and would have zero impact on traffic operations since it would be timed with Harvard Ave.
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:40 PM   #25
Ron Newman
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Re: General Infrastructure

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As for Cambridge Street, a signalized crosswalk at Linden Street would satisfy most of the desire lines
It might not even have to be signalized if you make it a raised intersection, like the ones on Rindge Avenue in North Cambridge.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:41 PM   #26
Kahta
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
Anyone who yaps the word "jaywalking" is someone who doesn't give a shit about pedestrians or the neighborhood. The attitude is "if you're on foot, your time is not important. Only drivers are important. Here's a 'fuck you' fence for your trouble."

"Jaywalking" is an imaginary crime invented by motorists to discriminate against people who are using the public realm open space but not inside of a two ton vehicle. The people who are most vulnerable get blamed.

As for Cambridge Street, a signalized crosswalk at Linden Street would satisfy most of the desire lines, would be plenty visible, and would have zero impact on traffic operations since it would be timed with Harvard Ave.
So motorists should have travel at such a slow a speed that allows reaction times to someone that just walks into the street when they are 5 feet away?
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:56 PM   #27
Arlington
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Re: General Infrastructure

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So motorists should have travel at such a slow a speed that allows reaction times to someone that just walks into the street when they are 5 feet away?
Its a very modern problem: for most of civilization, street traffic moved no faster than a runaway horse (~30mph). I'd expect the solution to involve a little less presumption by cars that they own the road, and a little more attention by pedestrian (texting while walking is big these days).

I think two things make safety:
1) Separation of modes (which goes back at least to Olmstead's design for Central Park, which foresaw a separation of walking, bike/skate, horse, car, and "bypass" (but not quite any of these, since he was working in c. 1860) Still, there was an idea of modal separation (whatever that'd turn out to be)


2) Similar speeds. We know that car accidents start happening in traffic where the fastest are ~15mph different from the slowest (cars are safest when they're all at similar speeds--almost no matter what the speed)

So intermixing should be avoided, and I'm OK with pedestrian fences (to channelize), just like I'm ok with high,square,sharp curbs (which provide mental "side friction" that slows drivers down)
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Old 07-08-2013, 08:53 PM   #28
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: General Infrastructure

If you're going to put up fences, there needs to be more crosswalks. The jaywalking there is a symptom of the lack of official access. There is nothing at Linden, nothing that lines up with the Pike footbridge, nothing that lines up with the ped path to the Lincoln/Mansfield intersection. And there is almost a 1500 ft. gap between nearest crosswalks (Harvard Ave. to the easterly side- only of Lincoln). The "legal" way to cross detours you--over a hill--around 2-3 critical neighborhood access points. Of course they're gonna jaywalk.

There should be ped crossings lining up with Linden/footbridge and the path to Lincoln/Mansfield. If they don't want to put stop signals there, at least do one of those yellow-strobe pushbutton ped warnings with traffic calming.

And yes, they must do traffic calming. It's 6 travel lanes over the bridge with vehicles hitting the afterburners over the bridge. The fact that they have enough running room to wildly exceed the speed limit here is a bug, not a feature. I'd lane-drop it to 4 + generous turn lanes, put in bike lanes, widen the median at crosswalks, and do some sort of traffic-calming features at the crosswalks. It is ridiculous that that stretch of road has only 2 fewer lanes than the Pike below. Especially when it dumps into nothing but 2-lane roads at the Harvard intersection. Yes...it feels like a frickin' divided highway here, and the speed trap on this stretch probably makes the bunching and choppy flow on either side of the Pike approach that much worse.
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Old 07-09-2013, 05:13 PM   #29
Kahta
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Its a very modern problem: for most of civilization, street traffic moved no faster than a runaway horse (~30mph). I'd expect the solution to involve a little less presumption by cars that they own the road, and a little more attention by pedestrian (texting while walking is big these days).
The fact that it's a modern problem doesn't eliminate having ways of fixing it-- that section actually functions fairly well and already works as a 4 lane road because of the jersey barriers on one side and the right turning traffic out of Linden St on the other side.

The biggest issues in this stretch of road are: cars driving well over the speed limit between the bridge and the MassPike onramp-- because they need to cut from the far left lane to the right lane to get onto the pike and then doing so at the last minute.

Cambridge St gets backed up between Brighton Ave and harvard ave in the afternoon/evening and the lack of visibility for cars making a left turn towards Brighton Ave through stopped traffic is an issue. Pedestrians jaywalking through traffic that is stopped on one side and moving on the other is also an issue because once traffic is moving on both sides they are stuck standing on a double yellow line in the middle.

The left turn from Cambridge St is confusing and takes such a long time that motorists cut through Highgate St to Linden St. Same goes for following Harvard Ave from Comm ave-- motorists instead take Linden St.

Jaywalkers cutting through stopped traffic everywhere end up making things worse by preventing cars/buses from taking advantage of light cycles. Motorists and Buses then compensate by lowering red light compliance or making left turns/moving into the intersection without an exit) that generate gridlock.

Bicyclists and pedestrians are dangerously outgunned everywhere between the bridge in question and soldiers field road. Why not take advantage of the unused railroad ROW and build a bike/pedestrian path from the bridge to western ave?

There are a number of issues with the interchange itself that could be improved (lack of direct connections to soldiers field rd or a grade separated charles river crossing from the pike), but that's really outside of the scope of this project.
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Old 07-09-2013, 06:04 PM   #30
Matthew
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Originally Posted by Kahta View Post
So motorists should have travel at such a slow a speed that allows reaction times to someone that just walks into the street when they are 5 feet away?
Red herring. Can't stop suicidal people, and trying to do so would only do more harm than good.

People need to be able to cross streets, and they need to be able to do so frequently in most cases. In the specific case of this bridge we can narrow it down to two points of interest: the Franklin Street overpass and the Mansfield Street stairs.

Building infrastructure that denies the ability to cross the street, and then "walk-shaming" pedestrians with "jay-walking" accusations is wrong.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:01 PM   #31
mass88
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Re: General Infrastructure

http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/..._intercha.html

Looks like MassDOT is going to begin testing a solution to the mess at the 95/Pike interchange in Weston. Going to bring 95/128 down to 3 lanes ahead of the merging traffic from the Pike and route 30.

I think this entire interchange needs to be rebuilt. It's typical mass where you have a major interchange and it's a cloverleaf and now extra lanes lanes to make the interchange flow a lot more smoothly.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:03 PM   #32
mass88
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Re: General Infrastructure

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2013/07/1...8-interchange/

Here's the story with a video to explain the project.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:05 PM   #33
BussesAin'tTrains
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Re: General Infrastructure

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I think this entire interchange needs to be rebuilt. It's typical mass where you have a major interchange and it's a cloverleaf and now extra lanes lanes to make the interchange flow a lot more smoothly.
Maybe after they implement high-speed tolls they'll consider downsizing the maze.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:07 PM   #34
mass88
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Maybe after they implement high-speed tolls they'll consider downsizing the maze.
The way things are now, it doesn't seem too smart to have a major toll area right before a major interchange. It doesn't help that land is pretty tight in the area.

I'll take a wait and see approach, but I have little confidence this state will implement open lane tolling properly in this area.
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:17 PM   #35
Arlington
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Re: General Infrastructure

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Originally Posted by mass88 View Post
http://boston.cbslocal.com/2013/07/1...8-interchange/
Here's the story with a video to explain the project.
THis is very similar to what's been done (fairly successfully) with I-93 North and Route 28 in Somerville (just north of the Assembly Square Home Depot) The 28 exit was made exit-only and 93 is forced (with paint) to keep to just 3 lanes so that traffic coming up from 28 can get on with no conflicts.

it isn't perfect--too many people don't see the paint (and have worn a lot of it off)--but it's been a cheap and relatively effective fix. Overall the 4th lane isn't missed by 93-users and is much appreciated by the folks getting on.

Similarly, on 95/128 the suddenly-open right lane is an invitation to idots to weave near the traffic exiting to 90 and speed in the sparse right lane (and therefore bear down hard on the folks coming *in* from 90 (and 30).
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:28 PM   #36
BussesAin'tTrains
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Re: General Infrastructure

This is outside the city, but the Crosby's Corner elimination on Route 2 on the Concord/Lincoln line has entered the "tear down the forest" stage, so the path of the overpass that will carry Route 2 is now evident. I wonder if Concord will develop any of the abutting land on the Cambridge Turnpike, now that the state route won't be travelling on it for that stretch near the intersection. Probably not.
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Old 08-14-2013, 09:56 PM   #37
mass88
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Re: General Infrastructure

http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/...=all#aComments

The state is going to present its plans for the new toll setup. $250 million project that will replace all tollbooths by 2017. Work is scheduled to start in June of 2014. 400 toll collectors will lose their jobs and it's estimated $50 million will be saved a year. People without transponders will be billed and it's expected an additional fee of $1 or $2 will be included to cover the admin costs.

They're going to present their full plans tomorrow night.

Last edited by mass88; 08-14-2013 at 10:41 PM.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:11 PM   #38
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Re: General Infrastructure

Wow, I knew DePaola was keen on this, didn't think they'd move this fast.

Looks like from the plans that the Allston tolls are going away entirely and will be replaced by a gantry in West Brighton and one near the BU Bridge.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:17 PM   #39
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Re: General Infrastructure

As the article states, the Tobin will be the pilot for this program. They hope to have it ready in 2014. I'm looking forward to seeing it implemented and how it works out.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:32 PM   #40
F-Line to Dudley
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Re: General Infrastructure

Oh God, 2014 is not soon enough for I-84/Sturbridge on a Friday afternoon.
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