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Mayor Walsh asks: what should Boston's transportation future be?

October 9, 2015

Transportation

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Transportation

The City released a draft transportation vision for Boston, developed by the Go Boston Advisory Committee through conversations with over 6,000 Bostonians.

BOSTON – Friday, October 9, 2015 -  Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced that in affiliation with the Boston Transportation Department,  Go Boston 2030 - the City’s Transportation Planning Initiative - reached a major milestone, as the project moves from setting a vision for the City to identifying specific actions.  As part of this announcement, the City released a draft transportation vision for Boston, developed by the Go Boston Advisory Committee through conversations with over 6,000 Bostonians.  That vision will be the foundation for engaging residents on what transportation projects they most want to see pursued in Boston.

“The City of Boston launched Go Boston 2030 to better understand the public’s aspirations for transportation throughout the city and to build a bold, innovative transportation future based on an unprecedented level of public engagement,” said Mayor Walsh. “Our transportation Action Plan will lay out an ambitious roadmap to address inequities in underserved neighborhoods, connect our workforce to job opportunities, and prepare our systems for climate change.”

To build the Action Plan, the City is launching a series of community outreach efforts.  Suggestions can be submitted by visiting the ‘Ideas on the Street’ pop-up which is currently touring over 30 locations citywide and by attending ‘Idea Roundtables’ in November.  You can find schedules and submit your ideas online at the Go Boston 2030 website. The collected project and policy suggestions will inform the priorities and implementation strategies to be included in the Action Plan.  The plan will be completed by Summer 2016.

As part of the Go Boston 2030 initiative, the City is already taking steps to improve transportation. 

“We have identified early action projects to improve safety on our streets, fight congestion, and improve access for pedestrians and bicyclists,” said Boston Transportation Commissioner, Gina Fiandaca.

The Vision that will inform the action is a result of extensive public participation. Based on over 5,000 questions from the public about getting around Boston in the future and comments from the 600 people who participated in the Visioning Lab, ambitious goals and aspiration targets have been identified around nine themes.

The following themes with their associated goals and targets rose to the top:

Access

  • Goal – Make Boston’s neighborhoods interconnected for all modes of travel, and connect low-income communities to job-rich districts
  • Target – Every home in Boston will be within a 10-minute walk of a rail station or key bus route, Hubway station, and car-share.
  • Early Action - A commitment to sign a Mayoral executive order making Complete Streets the city’s design policy to balance public space among transit, cars, walkers, and bicyclists. DriveBoston, an expansion of car-share in the neighborhoods with 80 new spaces to be located on city streets and in municipal lots to add to those in off-street garages.  Green Links, a plan that will connect residents in every neighborhood to Boston’s greenway network and park system.

Safety

  • Goal – Collaborate on design and education to substantially reduce collisions on every street
  • Target – Eliminate traffic fatalities in Boston
  • Early Action - Vision Zero Boston, a joint effort by BTD, the Boston Police Department and EMS to eliminate traffic fatalities and dramatically reduce collisions involving motor vehicles.

Reliability

  • Goal- Prioritize making travel predictable on Boston’s transit and roadway networks
  • Target – MBTA customers will experience waits and travel times that are longer than what is scheduled only 10 percent of the time
  • Early Action - A data sharing partnership with Waze, a smartphone app, to facilitate signal timing adjustments and enforcement of double-parking and “Don’t Block the Box” to improve commute times.

You can find the complete draft of Vision Framework report online.

Go Boston 2030 is an initiative launched by the City of Boston to imagine a bold new transportation plan for Boston for the next five, 10, and 15 years. This initiative is a joint venture with the Boston Transportation Department. Listening to the public and providing a robust and innovative community engagement process has been critical at every phase of the process. The Go Boston 2030 Advisory Committee chaired by Representative Russell Holmes, who represents the Sixth Suffolk district and Richard Dimino, President and CEO of A Better City, a business group, are guiding the process.  The goals listed in the draft Vision Report are based on the input gathered from the community engagement campaign that started last winter with a Question Truck that visited every neighborhood in Boston asking people to submit questions about Boston’s transportation future. This was followed by a two-day transportation visioning lab held in May 2015, which collected further public feedback and ideas.  The proposed aspirational targets created to correspond with the goals in the Vision Report are based on extensive, expert research and data on transportation possibilities led by the City of Boston’s Transportation Department.

Go Boston 2030 will be woven into the City's Imagine Boston 2030 plan, a citywide planning effort that will define a vision for the future of Boston leading up to its 400th birthday.  Imagine Boston 2030 will guide our approach to preserving, enhancing, and growing the city's neighborhoods in a way that promotes shared prosperity, sound public investment, and a healthy environment and population