An Alternative to Biking Bumpy Beacon Street

A member of the Somerville Bicycle Committee has come up with direct routes between Porter and Inman squares that he says are safer.

As reported last week, a member of the Somerville Bicycle Committee has been  that cyclists could take to travel between popular destinations.

, the committee has said, .

Getting from Porter Square to Inman Square and back 

For travel from Porter Square to Inman Square, Brian Postlewaite came up with a route parallel to Beacon Street, which has roads, he said, that are in better condition.

The route takes riders down Elm Street, Somerville Avenue, Dane Street and then through a series of neighborhood streets to the intersection of Beacon and Cambridge streets.

According to Google Maps, the trip is 1.6 miles and 9 minutes. The trip along Beacon Street, by comparision, is 1.4 miles and 8 minutes.

"The route is not much longer, though it includes more turns and more navigation." he said in an email. "Thus the benefit of having it signed."

The alternative trip back, which follows similar streets, is 1.9 miles and 11 minutes, according to Google Maps. That compares to 1.8 miles and 10 minutes of travel up Beacon Street.

Tai D. January 09, 2012 at 11:37 PM
Somerville Ave is definitely great on a bike if you can use it to get to your destination!
Jonah Petri January 10, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Heading through Union and via Webster into Inman is also an option. Webster Ave is in pretty terrible shape, though. Beacon St is supposed to be repaved in 2015. Are we sure we can wait that long?
Lucas Rogers March 28, 2012 at 08:54 PM
Unfortunately Webster is one-way, and so Jonah's route can only work one way. I think though that Webster between Prospect and Somerville Avenue would be a great street to see a divided, counter-flow bike lane, to help get bikes coming up from downtown Boston in and through Union Square and on their way to the bike lanes on Somerville Avenue. The alternative is Prospect Street, which is a tricky left-turn for bikes.
Jonah Petri March 29, 2012 at 01:41 AM
True enough - I take that left from Prospect to Somerville Ave, and changing lanes across 2+ lanes of traffic is probably the most dangerous part of my commute. A counterflow bike lane on Webster would be great. Heck, any lane markers at all on Webster would be great :)
Jonah Petri March 29, 2012 at 02:08 AM
BTW my info above was old. The MPO has moved the Beacon St project back to 2013, according to the latest TIP at bostonmpo.org. It had been pushed out to 2015 some time last year.
Tom Walsh March 30, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Hi Lucas, There is a plan to turn Webster and Prospect back to two-way roads. If I remember correctly, Webster would get a bike lane southbound (uphill), and Prospect would get one in each direction. This is part of a bigger project to address transportation in general to and through Union Square. I'm not sure what the timeline is for this project, though. The city website doesn't seem to have had any updates in over a year. I think Rob May at City Hall is the contact person on this project, in case you want any more information. http://www.somervillema.gov/departments/ospcd/squares-and-neighborhoods/union-square


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