Public design hearing on Main Street streetscape project!
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
7:00 PM (doors open 6:30 PM to view plans)
Worcester Public Library, Saxe Room
What is this hearing for? The City of Worcester is redesigning north Main Street from Austin/Myrtle Streets to School Street. This hearing is a required part of the process.
Why should I attend? WalkBike Worcester supports the proposed design (read our Sept 27 op-ed), which can help make the Central Business District a vibrant area that invites Worcester residents and visitors to spend time there. Having many supporters attend builds positive momentum for the project among city officials, MassDOT, and the public. We all have a stake in a revitalized Main Street!
What will happen at this public hearing? Before the hearing, you can view design plans and the engineers will answer questions. The hearing will start with a presentation by the City of Worcester and its consultant, followed by a Q&A period. If you’re comfortable, during this public comment period you can ask questions and voice your opinion about the project overall as well as specific features that are included or you believe should be included.
How else can I help? You may submit written comments to MassDOT at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can spread the word and show your support by sharing this notice, our Facebook event and our updates with your own networks.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
The proposed design reduces the current 4 vehicle lanes to 3 lanes with a shared turning lane, adds bicycle lanes, and improves pedestrian crossings. These types of changes, along with lighting, on-street parking, shade trees and landscaping, and seating, help create the type of welcoming public space that can draw more people downtown and support existing and new businesses. Some critics believe adding bicycle facilities will cause traffic delays and reduce parking, leading to loss of retail business along the corridor. Evidence shows such concerns generally prove unfounded.
Benefits of the project for walkers:
*It improves safety by reducing crossing distance and increasing pedestrian visibility.
*It encourages crossing at designated locations.
*It encourages walking to area destinations.
Benefits of the project for bicyclists:
*It improves safety by reducing conflicts between bicyclists and drivers.
*It creates dedicated space to pass through the corridor.
*It decreases incentive to ride on the sidewalk.
Benefits of the project for drivers:
*It improves safety by reducing potential for conflicts with other vehicles.
*It increases awareness of bicyclists’ presence on the roadway.
*It encourages yielding to pedestrians.
Where can I get more information?
Read our As I See It from the September 27 Telegram and Gazette outlining the benefits.
Watch this very short video demonstrating conversion of a 4-lane roadway to a 3-lane roadway.
Check out our project page for links to further information about this type of design and its benefits.
Stay up to date on this project and other walking and biking news in Worcester and beyond:
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