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The Cambridge Street project begins an Oak Street and ends at Second Street.

Cambridge Launches Safety Improvement Project on Cambridge Street

The City of Cambridge plans to install quick-build separated bike lanes and make related safety improvements on Cambridge Street between Inman Square and Second Street in 2024.

A cyclist, a person in a wheelchair at a curb ramp, and a bakery buildingThe Safety Improvement Project on Cambridge Street will:

  • Change the layout of the street with quick-build materials: new pavement markings, traffic signs, and flex posts.
  • Add separated bike lanes to make it safer and more comfortable to bike to homes, businesses, schools, and other destinations on Cambridge Street:
    • Move bike lanes to be next to the curb.
    • Add white flex posts to physically separate them from moving vehicles.
  • Make improvements for people walking:
    • Shorten crossing distances for people walking.
    • Reconstruct some existing curb ramps for accessibility.
  • Evaluate changes to improve service and reliability for MBTA's route 69 bus.
  • Reduce on-street parking:
    • Significantly reduce the number of on-street parking spaces to one side of the street. Parking can change sides on different parts of the street.
    • Accommodate seasonal outdoor street dining in parking spaces.
    • We will Work with businesses and residents to identify the best locations and regulations for the remaining parking and loading spaces.

Outreach will begin with three events:

  • Wednesday, November 29: In-Person Open House from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Valente Branch Public Library (826 Cambridge St.) (Note: This event was originally scheduled to end at 6 p.m. We have extended the end time to 6:30 p.m.)
  • Saturday, December 2: In-Person Open House from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Millers River Apartments (15 Lambert St.)
  • Tuesday, December 12: Virtual Community Meeting #1 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Zoom

At these events, community members will learn about the goals of the project and give pre-design feedback. These events are the first series of several phases of outreach for the project. There will be more events in 2024, when the City will come back to the community with draft designs for review and feedback. 

Quick-build projects like this one do not require construction: we do not plan to dig into the ground or make changes to the width or shape of the road. Instead, the City uses paint, flex-posts, new signage, minor traffic signal upgrades, and changes to signal timing. These methods allow us to make changes to our streets more rapidly and to make adjustments even after a design is installed.  

Cambridge Street is a key piece in the City of Cambridge’s plan for a safe, connected bicycle network. Separated bicycle lanes increase comfort for people biking by using a barrier to separate them from vehicle traffic. The City’s goal is to encourage more people to bike and increase safety by building a network of these separated lanes, connecting important destinations throughout Cambridge. Safer, more comfortable bike lanes:

  • Give people who want to bike an opportunity to substitute trips they might make by car with trips by bike
  • Help people travel around their neighborhoods and run local errands quickly, safely, and conveniently
  • Provide travel options for people of all ages, abilities, and identities
  • Help us get closer to “Vision Zero”—our commitment to eliminating transportation-related deaths and serious injuries while increasing healthy, equitable mobility for all

The Safety Improvement Project on Cambridge Street will also help the City meet the requirements of the Cycling Safety Ordinance, which mandates that Cambridge install 25 miles of separated bicycle lanes by 2026, including on this section of Cambridge Street.  

Interested in learning more?

Page was posted on 11/14/2023 10:04 AM
Page was last modified on 12/19/2023 5:08 PM
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