I received an alert from the Boston Cyclists Union regarding a Casey Arborway Construction Meeting tomorrow May 7th, 7pm to 9pm at Boston English High School Auditorium, 144 McBride Street, Jamaica Plain. As I’ve written in the past, I live in the Forest Hills neighborhood and eagerly await the permanent removal of this highway infrastructure that will be replaced with new facilities for bicyclists, walkers, and public transit, open up a significant amount of public space along the Emerald Necklace, and spur economic development in the form of new transit-oriented housing and small business.
Unfortunately, a small but vocal minority insists on building a new overpass and prioritizing high-speed/high-volume automotive traffic at any cost. They plan to flood the community meeting in an effort to convince Governor Charlie Baker to kill the Casey Arborway project and construct a new highway overpass instead. If you support a Boston that prioritizes walking, biking, public transit, green space, and local economic development instead of allowing some car commuters to zip through the city a bit quicker, please attend this meeting and offer your opinion.
I don’t know if I’ll be able to attend the meeting myself, but I have sent a message to Governor Baker. My message is copied below. Feel free to crib for your own message.
For more information on the project, please read the Arborway Matters post The Casey Arborway Project – a broad defense.
Dear Governor Baker:
I live in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Jamaica Plain and I’m eagerly anticipating the permanent removal of the elevated highway structure that passes through my neighborhood called the Casey Overpass. Once removed, a new human-scaled boulevard called Casey Arborway will be constructed as well as opening new public space, improved access to public transit at Forest Hills, and bicycle lanes.
As a Republican focused on fiscal responsibility you will appreciate that the Casey Arborway costs significantly less to construct than a new overpass, and will require less taxpayer money to maintain and repair in the future. Removal of the highway also opens the Forest Hills area for economic development with room for new housing and small business. The improved facilities for transit, walking, and biking will also help the environment and reduce the overall traffic congestion in Jamaica Plain.
The decision for an at-grade street in Forest Hills came after a multi-year processes involving a couple of dozen community meetings, working groups, and analysis of traffic engineers. The people of Jamaica Plain through their attendance at public meetings and correspondence with elected leaders showed their support of permanently removing this highway infrastructure by a 3 to 1 margin. Please don’t be swayed by the campaign of a self-interested minority to delay or alter the Casey Arborway plan.
Thank you for your consideration.