New Lights Debut at Burroughs and Centre

Pedestrians hustle across Centre Street (against the light) on the second day of the pedestrian and vehicle signals being fully operational, Wednesday, May 20, 2015.

Chris Helms

Pedestrians hustle across Centre Street (against the light) on the second day of the pedestrian and vehicle signals being fully operational, Wednesday, May 20, 2015.

As if JP didn’t have enough changing traffic patterns to digest, starting Tuesday the new signals at Burroughs and Centre went live.

Business people gathered for Wednesday’s JP Business & Professional Association said they noticed the lights were fully operational on Tuesday.

The intersection, at the heart of JP’s Centre/South district, has buttons for pedestrians to activate the lights. The signals are on poles rising out of the sidewalk and don’t hang over the middle of the street.

Jamaica Plain News watched pedestrians navigate the new setup Wednesday midday. It seemed plenty of folks still cross whenever they’d like.

“I think it’s horrible,” said Jeffrey Ferris, owner of Ferris Wheels Bike Shop and Fresh Copy, “because it’s going to turn all of us into outlaws.”

The impetus for the new lights came from a neighborhood request, Tracey Ganiatsos, spokesperson for the city department, told Jamaica Plain News back in November. Transportation officials did a study in August 2012 that showed pedestrian and vehicle traffic warranted the new signal, Ganiatsos wrote in an email.

As part of the project, a new set of lights has also been installed down the block at Thomas and Centre, by the Dunkin’ Donuts.

A trench between the two intersections allows the Transportation Department to coordinate signal timing between the two. Ganiatsos said the signals will be on flash from 3 a.m. to 6 a.m.

The neighborhood will be watching to see if the timing of the lights makes sense. Last fall, the timing was a point of concern for the Jamaica Pond Association.

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