Thanks to the leadership of Boston Bike Czar Nicole Freedman, the Boston portion of Beacon Street east of Cleveland Circle has been striped with bike lanes for a while. The absence of bike lanes from the Boston/Newton line to Hammond Street has been glaring. The abrupt end of the bike lanes at the cities' border is particularly poignant.
Concern that Newton has just dropped the ball can be eliminated. Filed last week with Traffic Council:
ALD. FULLER, BAKER, & SCHNIPPER requesting on Beacon Street east of Hammond Street to the Newton/Boston City Line adjacent to Boston College: (a) changes to the existing parking regulations to facilitate the addition of marked bicycle lanes on both the north and south sides of Beacon, and (b) installation of parking meters on the north, and possibly, south, sides of Beacon, to facilitate through travel and short-term daytime parking.
The parking west of Chestnut Hill Dr. complicates the installation of bike lanes. In particular, there's a point west of Lawrence Ave, where there is not enough room for the existing parking on both sides, automobile travel lanes, and proper bike lanes. To do the bike lanes right, the city had to wrestle with the parking implications. That explains the delay.
To his credit, Associate City Engineer Clint Schuckel has been working with the Ward 7 aldermen, BC, and the Chestnut Hill Neighborhood Association to reconfigure the parking in a way that will provide a net increase in on-street parking (always good!) and provide full bike lanes. Having reviewed the pulp-based, reflective technology (paper) version of the plans, it looks like the time was well spent. The plans look great. (I'll post an electronic version when I get it.)
Here's the kicker: the parking is going to be metered, at least on the north side of the street. Bike lanes, smart parking policy, and new revenue!