New Somerville Bus/Bike Lanes on Winter Hill Broadway Causing Mixed Reactions

By William Tauro

The new pavement markings, signage, and traffic signal retiming on Broadway Between Magoun Square and McGrath Highway has many residents outraged and are demanding that these decision be reversed.

The new lanes and parking are very confusing to many residents who are raising concerns that it will be more dangerous as well.

As you travel on Broadway in Winter Hill heading west the city has removed at least thirty parking spaces and created a bus only lane in the area and some residents are complaining that “There was very poorly advertised notices or public input allowed where people could come and speak out about it. It’s so ridiculous and a nightmare waiting to happen.”

As you travel further into Magoon area there are no seperate bus lanes and spaces intact that residents stated “Which makes no sense at all and again poor planning by the city.” Another resident told us that “There’s going to be a lot of car doors opening up and taking out bikers or cars clipping mirrors.”

The city of Somerville stated on their website “ Based on stakeholder feedback, the design of Broadway has been modified between Temple St and Main St in the westbound (or uphill) direction. The bus and bike lanes will be separated due to safety concerns regarding the difference in speed between buses and bikes when climbing Winter Hill. This will require converting the parking lane along that section to non-automobile uses. You can view the latest plan set and parking map under the resources tab to see where changes will be taking place.”

12 thoughts on “New Somerville Bus/Bike Lanes on Winter Hill Broadway Causing Mixed Reactions”

  1. I am boycotting Broadway and all its business. Who needs this aggravation anyway, life is too short. The traffic is always jammed on Broadway now. If you go in a public bathroom and no one is wheeling up to the stall for disabled people you can use it, but this bus lane is off limits to cars even if there is NO bus in sight! No wonder why the traffic is jammed! How stupid!

  2. watching what’s happening in somerville from northern suburbs. i’m wondering if anyone has talked to lawyers about this … seems to me that the city is bent towards restricting freedom of movement for a large percentage of the population to benefit another. that freedom is a recognized right in the massachusetts constitution. one might also consider that they want to take developer dollars to make somerville even denser, and they don’t want to spend too much more money on actually moving them to and from the places they need or want to go, because that’s messy. you buy a car expecting to be able to use it, the state collects sales/excise/license/registration taxes, cities take parking fees, you pay for insurance, and now the state is slowly restricting use by removing parking and intentionally creating choke points by removing lanes and slowing traffic, creating more pollution? were the effects on somerville’s middle to old age residents properly considered, those that don’t walk or ride a bike, or stand in the cold waiting for the bus that may or may not take them where they need to go? this is only the tip of the iceberg on the arguments that could be made. i’m no lawyer, but seems to me on the constitutional question alone, someone should contact the aclu and see if they have some suggestions. just a thought

    1. Suggestions are welcome to me. I had been doing a little research into legal help but being it is not in my field I am probably spending too much time looking. It seemed like a municipal lawyer may be an answer. But never gave the aclu a thought. I will contact them and see what they have to say. Thanks.

      1. must be a way to get some interest for a story from the herald or fox 25. they do it, then the globe and the rest have to cover it . get your people, get the businesses, get your talking points, and get some coverage before the city election. good luck, rooting for you!

        1. Thank you. I didn’t expect this to go this big. Just trying to get their attention at first. Looking back I really did get off to a bad start. If I had planned this I would have looked into all these things I believe before starting so I would know what to do. The businesses are just jumping in now. We will be putting out literature this week when it comes in on Wednesday. I have help now who is a wonderful person named Kate Castle who is much more refined than I am. There is a meeting at the Healey School on 10/24 at 6.30 and hopefully we can talk on it then. If you want updates then email and sign the petition at for restore Broadway Somerville. Thanks for you support.

    2. Thank you for your input my name is JoAnn Bocca Rivieccio . I am running for City Council At Large . I am against the bus/bike lane .
      I want people to express their feeling by voting . Of course I want people to vote for me . If I am not your choice just vote anyway. We must all be included in decisions when it comes to our city . WE are the people and we all matter …

  3. The big problem here is that a mistake was made just in the timing alone. Should never have been done until the bridges were returned to normal to start with. Next is they don’t listen with an open mind. I have talked to them. Regardless of saying they made the mistake instead of fixing it like us mortals have to do they then tell us we have to learn to live with it. That’s not he kind of person I would want for mayor. I don’t want to be stuck with their mistake. I never had intentions of taking on a fight like this, it just happened. I have never worked on helping anyone to become mayor, now I am doing all I can for Marianne Walles to become mayor. I have hopes that she is better and will actually work for us which will be something new. I don’t like my employees telling me what to do. I don’t want to take this anymore. This is the first time also I have had the time. I am retired. A short while ago my mother passed away and I was working and caring for her. I had no time for these things. Later this morning they are having a meeting at proof on Main Street at 11am to 1pm. Councilor Clingan and Brad Rawson (the City person in charge of this) are supposed to be there. Councilor Stephanie Hirsch my possible show up as well. She has been the nicest person in the city so far to talk to. I have yet to meet with her or talk to her before this. Problem is the council members really have no say in this from what I have been told. I plan to be there. I am hoping the 1500 plus people who signed my petition to fix Broadway will be of help.

  4. My family and I are long term and early supports of the Mayor. The Bus lane was a reasonable idea, but it is not working in practice. The traffic is backing up on to the side streets, cars are going up side streets the wrong way and the drivers are raging causing more accidents. There are now dangerous conditions on what was quiet and smaller side streets. People are stuck idling more and the pollution levels have increased in the area. People in the cars are running more red lights. Once it snows and the streets are white with salt you can forget people respecting the bus lanes. I think traffic would flow better if the police would concentrate on stopping 6 cars at a time running the red lights or people blocking the intersections. The Lift and Uber drivers stopping anywhere and everywhere is making traffic worse too.

  5. It appears all of Broadway is being re-striped right down to Temple street. I guess since the City Councilors from both of these wards drink the same coolaide it does not matter what the rest of the neighborhood thinks.

    What I cannot understand is just this year there have been three deaths and all three were in a crosswalk. Where is the safety minded thinking when you add bike lanes in areas of dense traffic.

    I witnessed an angry in a hurry driver attempt to pass the long line waiting in the single lane at the light try to pass everyone only to end up stopped behind the parked cars six feet from the curb.

    I fear the worse with the dumbass decisions being made by this group.

  6. This is how you accommodate able bodied bicyclists and screw the tax paying car owners in Somerville. Remove parking spaces create bike lanes and now bus lanes for the driver who does not pull into the forty foot parking space anyway.

    The parking in school lots taken away in the winter that helped alleviate car owners from getting tickets during a snow emergency.

    Election day is September 10 th there is a primary for Mayor. Its time the voter exercise their opinion on what works for the next two years.

    1. Good luck with that. You don’t have common sense people running for office anymore. Pickings are mighty slim here. I would like the paint contract for this.

  7. What are these people smoking?? Just when you thought this city could not do anything dumber. Looks like they had preschoolers out there playing with paint. I thought Turm field was bad but this outdid it all. Can we get drug tests for the people who think this up? People from out of town may like this corn maze, who knows!

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