Reclaiming our neighborhood streets

Enrique Peñalosa: Urban Happiness
We hosted this world-renowned strategist and former mayor of Bogotá for four days in 2009. Our series of high-profile meetings and events raised awareness of options for improving the quality of life in our cities.
Bicycle lanes
We worked with Nicole Freedman, Director of the Boston Bicycle Program, and the Boston Bikes Advisory committee to identify four miles of roadway on which to paint “quick and easy” bicycle lanes using Economic Stimulus money. The installations have already begun – tripling the miles of bicycle lanes installed by the City of Boston.
Transit bicycle facilities
We pushed the MBTA to apply for Economic Stimulus money to improve bicycle parking – including 15 secure bike cages. The first bicycle cages, installed at Alewife and Forest Hills T stations, were made possible by our close working relationship with senior management at the MBTA. We also collaborated with StreetFilms NYC to make a film about the new bike parking which has helped build the enthusiasm and political support needed to replicate the project. At our urging, the MBTA has hired a designer to improve outreach to the public, to encourage the use of these new facilities.
On-street bicycle parking
Provided technical support to store manager and the City of Boston to get the city’s first transformation of on-street car parking space to bicycle parking facility approved and constructed. Twelve biking customers fit in the space where one car would have been. Bikes are off the sidewalks—opening up space for walking and outdoor seating. We also have helped to rally local support for bike lanes on Massachusetts Avenue in Back Bay, Boston, a major artery for all modes of travel in which the addition of bike lanes requires the removal of some on-street parking.
Boston/Everett connector
We led a coalition of transportation advocates to create alternatives to the Massachusetts Highway Department’s (MHD) designs for Route 99. The original MHD design for this key connector between Boston and Everett narrowed the sidewalks adjacent to a residential neighborhood, and provided only a shared traffic lane or shoulder space for bicyclists. With trucks comprising 20% of the traffic, we argued that—for safety and accommodation—bicycle lanes must be provided in both directions. We achieved our first level of success – MHD is reworking the design and has scheduled an additional public meeting.

Bike Rack Request website
In collaboration with the cities of Boston and Cambridge, we created a Google-map-based approach to collecting bike rack requests. The cities will incorporate the requests into their databases, and install bicycle racks where they are needed most. LivableStreets provided support to city staff, helping them do their jobs in a bureaucracy that often makes it difficult to implement high-tech tools.
City of Boston Election 2009 Website and Survey
We created a survery and website for the 2009 election in collaboration with other organizations working to improve their neighborhood.