Prioritizing Bike Safety in Newton
While biking is a healthy and green mode of transportation, many don’t see it as a viable option because of the lack of safe, continuous bike infrastructure here in our city. Building bike infrastructure, from the separation of protected lanes to designated bike racks, doesn’t just make Newton safer for cyclists, but it makes the city safer for drivers, pedestrians, residents with mobility impairments, and all that we share the roadways with. In order to make this goal a reality, we simply cannot continue building bike infrastructure one or two blocks at a time. Instead, we need to develop a comprehensive bike action plan that includes both North/South and East/West continuity of travel throughout Newton and ensures that we have connected routes through our village centers and to and from our school buildings.
I will support efforts to add protected bike lanes to our city’s roads and build wider sidewalks when possible, as well as connecting existing pathways to ensure better continuity of travel. We also must do better at clearing bike lanes and walkways in the winter so that everyone, from young residents to our senior citizens, can get outside and move throughout our city. I look forward to working collaboratively with groups like Bike Newton and Safe Routes to School (SRTS) to ensure that the steps we take are equitable, safe and occur with substantial community input.
In addition, whenever we undergo reconstruction of a roadway in Newton, we should always take advantage of the opportunity to build in more bicycle infrastructure and build a street that is safer than what we began with, similar to Cambridge’s Cycling Safety Ordinance. We need for political courage on behalf of local leaders to stand passionately for a city designed for people, not for cars, and who acts on the advocacy of groups like Bike Newton and Safe Routes to School, and if elected to the Newton City Council, I will advocate for a Newton that is safe and accessible to all. Read more about my transportation policy and how we can build accessible streets, neighborhoods and communities here."