Davis Square Streetscape: Project Charette

On July 4, 2012, in Latest News, by The Somerville Times

Residents and city planners share concerns over the proper development of Davis Square and its environs.

By Emmanuel Vincent

In order for a project to be efficient, it must be well thought out and carefully executed. Such is the case with Davis Square Streetscape. The follow-up event to the Davis Square Streetscape Kick-Off Tour, Project Charette, was held this past Tuesday at the Tab Building on Holland Street. Members of the community came together once again in the next phase of the process to offer a few suggestions on how the square could be improved. This time, visual maps of Davis Square were implemented to show their concerns.

One of the concerns that the public had was with Highland Ave and the fact that it does not have a bike lane. Many felt that this does not the make for a friendly commute experience for many bikers as vehicles are constantly switching lanes.

Another issue that residents expressed concerns over was a crosswalk light on College Ave. They claimed that its stop and go cycle was too short. As a result, there were concerns that individuals would be more tempted to jaywalk, putting themselves in harms way.

The back of the  Davis Square Plaza was also a focus in this meeting. A few people thought that there were ways to improve the area so that both the members of the community and businesses could benefit from it. Some believe that this could be achieved by providing more outside seating as well as shaded areas. In addition, a welcoming sign was thought to be a good way to create a more lively atmosphere.

Residents seem to care about their community and it does not go unnoticed. “Concerns reflect how much people care,” insists Sarah Spicer, Senior Transportation Planner.

The city tries to be aware of its resources and wants to make sure that everyone is taken into consideration as they try to make improvements. “This is a dense city,” said Sarah Spicer. “We have to be careful on how we use space as it benefits all users.”

The next meeting will be in the same location on July 17 at 6:00 p.m.



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