City of Cambridge Adds Another Bus Lane to Outer Mass. Ave. Redesign

Plans for the reconfiguration of outer Massachusetts Avneue in Cambridge. The City of Cambridge has updated its plans for outer Massachusetts Avenue, near the Arlington town line, to add a second outbound dedicated bus lane, in addition to protected bike lanes. An earlier version of the plan (at left) would have only provided one, inbound bus lane.
The City of Cambridge has updated its plans for outer Massachusetts Avenue, near the Arlington town line, to add a second outbound dedicated bus lane, in addition to protected bike lanes. An earlier version of the plan (at left) would have only provided one, inbound bus lane. Courtesy of the City of Cambridge.

The City of Cambridge has added a second dedicated bus lane to a quick-build project that will reconfigure a half-mile section of Massachusetts Avenue near the Arlington town line later this fall.

As reported here last month, Cambridge has been working on a plan to install new flexpost-protected bike lanes and a new inbound bus-only lane on this section of Massachusetts Avenue as required by the city’s newly-updated Cycling Safety Ordinance.

An earlier version of the plan, presented in a public meeting in mid-September, would have reassigned one of the street’s four vehicle lanes (on the southern side of the street, in the eastbound direction) as a dedicated bus lane, which would also be a legal loading zone for adjacent businesses during off-peak hours.

In response to positive public feedback to the proposed bus lane, the City of Cambridge has now added a second, outbound bus lane to the design.

During the September 14 meeting, we heard significant feedback in support of adding a northbound bus lane. Existing travel times for buses indicated that a bus lane would provide benefit during all hours of the day,” wrote Andreas Wolfe, Street Design Project Manager for the City of Cambridge, in a recent update about the project.

The bus lanes will benefit the MBTA’s route 77 buses, which served 7,190 riders every weekday before the pandemic.

The city plans to begin installation of the new lane markings and flexible-post bollards during the first week of November.

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