The City of Boston has committed to completely reimagine Commonwealth Avenue (Comm Ave), a victory for advocates who have pushed for years to make our city safer for all. The new design is a major step forward for the city and the 100,000 people who use Comm Ave every day.
Why Comm Ave?
- Commonwealth Avenue is a major east-west artery running through the heart of the Boston University campus and serving people who walk, bike, use transit, and drive.
- Bike use has increased 135% since 2007, pedestrian volumes have increased 80% since 2001, and car volumes have decreased as much as 31% since 1987 in the project area. (Source: Boston University Master Plan, sections 8.5.1-8.5.6).
- In 2013, a total of $17 million in local, state, and federal funding became available for the reconstruction of Comm Ave. The city proposed a design that would narrow sidewalks to offer more space for the Green Line tracks and wider travel lanes to be shared by people using cars and bikes.
- LivableStreets had been focused on Comm Ave for nearly a decade when the city turned its attention to the street. By uniting partner advocacy organizations and the public, ad by educating key decision makers, we helped win a design that includes protected bike lanes, raised crosswalks, improved bus stops, and transit signal priority for the Green Line and #57 bus.
The Comm Ave Improvement Project consists of 4 phases. Construction has been completed for Phase 1, and the groundbreaking ceremony for Phase 2 was held in October 2016 — great progress, but our work is far from over!
View photos from the Phase 2 Groundbreaking ceremony here.
View the 4 phases on Google maps here.
Phase 1 (Kenmore Square to BU Bridge) - Completed 2015
Phase 2A (BU Bridge to Alcorn Street) - Approved for construction 2017
Phase 2B (I-90 Overpass, BU Bridge Intersection) - Design phase
Phase 3, 4 (Packard’s Corner to Warren Streets) - Design phase
What You Can Do
Volunteer: Join us in spreading the word about the importance of safe and livable streets. Our volunteers are actively involved in all of our events and programming, including our Street Ambassadors program.