Pedestrian, Bicycle Safety Improvements Proposed at Jamaica Pond

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Officials on Friday confirmed a toxic outreak of blue-green algae in Jamaica Pond, which remains closed to swimming and boating.

Plans for the area around the northern entrance to Jamaica Pond include new crosswalks, paths and sidewalks, and traffic signals, according to a presentation to the community Tuesday night.

According to Arborway Matters, the Massachusetts Depatment of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), the Boston Department of Parks and Recreation, and their engineering and design conttractor unveiled plans for pedestrian and bicyling access improvements at the intersection of Parkman Drive and Perkins Street, near the Cabot Estate entrance to the pond:

Vehicle travel lanes on Perkins near the intersection will be narrowed to provide traffic calming and to reclaim greenspace adjacent to the pond. A new island west of Parkman, a concrete median between Cabot and Parkman, a bump-out at the Cabot crosswalk and widened sidewalks to the north are planned to enhance safety for pedestrians in the area. Plans call for the creation of two new ADA-compliant paths connecting the crosswalks to the main Pond-side recreational path while reducing erosion. Though five existing trees will be lost, ten new ones will be planted.

Attendees seemed to receive the plans well, although concerns were raised about whether the plan improves bicycle safety in corridor, how light cycles would function and other questions.

DCR hopes to begin construction this fall and complete it by the end of the year, with landscaping coming the following spring.

As the Jamaica Plain Gazette recently reported, the project has been slow to develop to this point. The DCR initially held a community meeting on these improvements in the summer of 2013, at which time officials estimated the project could be completed within two years.

Hop on over to Arborway Matters to read more about Tuesday's meeting.