Our Top 10 Stories of 2019
2019 was the debut year for StreetsblogMASS. Our readership has been growing steadily since we launched at the beginning of the summer, and we’ve had no shortage of stories to cover.
It’s an exciting time for transportation policy in Massachusetts: more elected officials and key decision-makers are coming to the realization that car-centric infrastructure is financially and environmentally ruinous, yet the same leaders sometimes can’t find the will to make the changes we need them to make. Reviewing our top stories of 2019, you’ll notice that several cover key debates – some of which have come to positive resolutions, some of which remain undecided – that illustrate how successful advocates can be when we come together and demand better from our political leadership.
Our most-read story for the year covered motorists’ overblown ire over the redesign of Somerville’s Broadway through the Winter Hill neighborhood. A follow-up story published on Dec. 10 to cover a public hearing on the project and its accomplishments also ranked in our top 20 stories of the year.
The eye candy of the city’s new bridge renderings drew a lot of traffic from social media, but we like to think that Streetsblog readers were also eager for a feel-good story about one of the year’s more successful advocacy efforts.
This story (and its follow-up, in the number 5 position) gained nation-wide attention as transit advocates from all over clicked through to learn about the Boston region’s efforts to transform its commuter rail system into a regional mass transit network.
Massachusetts added a key section of the Mass. Central Rail Trail this summer, and many more are in the works. We’re looking forward to covering more trail ribbon-cuttings over the next few years.
MassDOT’s plans for Allston are going to be a rich vein of Streetsblog stories over the next decade (or two?). In addition to this long overview of the plans, we also published a detailed look at MassDOT’s plans to build a “temporary” highway through the middle of the Charles River, and at the environmental review process that’s just getting underway now.
A syndicated story from Streetsblog USA had many readers wondering whether Amtrak’s “operating profit” was really a meaningful benchmark for success.
Could this become a signature bus priority corridor, or will it get subordinated to cars and stuck in traffic like the Silver Line? We’ll find out in 2020.
One of our earliest stories, from June 10, framed an ongoing conversation about whether fares hinder transit ridership – and whether transit agencies should bother asking riders for money at all.