Wednesday, June 16, 2010

INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS: Brick sidewalks on Somerville Ave.

Question/Comment:  Multiple residents have expressed concerns regarding brick sidewalks currently being installed on Somerville Ave.  Additionally, some find the raised sidewalks annoying as they act like speed bumps all along a major road.  They would like to know why the City is undertaking such a costly project when facing budget crisis, rather than just painting crosswalks.

City Update 6/16/10:  The reconstruction of Somerville Ave. is a State-lead project.  The majority of financial support for this project is being provided by the State, and they currently have control over mutually agreed upon plan for the project.  Thus, the cost installing brick sidewalks is not being funded through the City's budget.  Additionally, while the new sidewalks going across Somerville Ave. temporarily create bumps in the road, once the final surface of Somerville Ave is paved these sidewalks will be level with the road surface.


  1. Regardless of who is making the decisions, it seems like a lot of tax money is being spent on last century's infrastructure.

  2. I could be wrong... but I was under the impression that the raised sidewalks were also a part of increasing the "walkability" of Somerville. It purposely makes cars slow down and notice that the crossings are there, making it safer for pedestrians. What are you in such a hurry for anyway??

  3. This is the final indignity of the ordeal of trying to pick your way along Somerville Ave. There at the end, you are funneled to a red light behind cars going to Porter Square. Traffic calming? Is that some kind of joke? How is it an improvement to sit there looking at the formerly unmolested exit while idling and wasting gas and creating emissions? This is a shameful, hamfisted design failure.

  4. As was clearly stated at the December 2010 Public Safety hearing, wheelchair users experience brick surfaces as harmful, jolting and stressful. Yet, the City continues to rationalize the use of brick paver surface materials on the basis that, it isn't the City's money, so, cost isn't an issue.

    Brick and brick paver materials HURT an entire segment of the population who are therefore denied equitable use of these facilities. Residents with disabilities have told the City this in editorials as well as in person-- to no avail.


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