Tuesday's [ed: Sept. 14, 2010] Boston Globe Metro Section (page B1) has an article illustrated with a photo of several of the 60-foot long articulated Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) buses that the T is using on its Route 28 through Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan. Apparently some residents of the areas served by Route 28 are not pleased that their inputs were not sought or considered. These BRT buses are the same buses proposed for the now dormant Urban Ring project's Phase 2.
Curiously, area residents did not want designated bus lanes. A major failing of Phase 2 of the Urban Ring was a lack of adequate designated bus lanes to avoid mixed traffic issues on narrow streets. Perhaps if and when Phase 2 of the Urban Ring is revived, the experiences of T Route 28 BRT buses in mixed traffic may prove valuable.
It should be noted that apparently institutional stakeholders are not that involved in the areas served by the T's Route 28, unlike the areas served by the Urban Ring. The T, according to the Globe article, seems to have ignored residents whereas major institutions have dominated the Citizens Advisory Committee for the Urban Ring project: apparently, residents be damned.
Meantime, the BU Bridge repairs continue. When the work is completed, there will be one less lane (down from four to three) for motor vehicles. What will that do for traffic? Will the Phase 2 Urban Ring project include the BU Bridge as part of its route? Or will the Grand Junction Rail Line under the BU Bridge be augmented to provide two BRT bus lanes AND an active commuter rail line from Worcester through streets of Cambridge to perhaps North Station? Surely the institutions are being consulted; but are the residents?
Meantime, the Charles River White Geese continue to pay the price for inadequate planning.