Tuesday, June 29, 2010

And sorry I could not vote for both

Two roads converged in a twisted maze,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one driver, long I stayed

And waited while my neurons frayed;
I doubted if I should ever get home.

The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (acronym not actually BURP or BUMPY) would like to know which intersections in your town need improvement, or at least a little couch time with a traffic therapist. Yes, you can vote an intersection off the island!

Here in Medford, 2 of the 5 worst intersections for crashes are within 1/2 mile of my house, and it’s not because of the way I drive. Seriously, I strongly recommend you select your town and vote, or just vote for my least favorites.

My votes and submitted reasons for Medford intersections:

Worst: High Street/Winthrop Street
Tied for worst: Mystic Valley Parkway/Winthrop Street

I drive through the High Street/Winthrop Street rotary and the Mystic Valley Parkway/Winthrop Street intersection all the time, sometimes 4 or more times a day. Both intersections are horrible, terrifying experiences, with cars stacked up and frustrated drivers who get aggressive and do stupid moves. The MVP/Winthrop intersection causes longer backups, but the High/Winthrop rotary causes more near-crashes and often at higher speeds. Both intersections are sheer hell to cross on foot safely, which is a grave concern given that there are commuter bus stops at the High/Winthrop rotary.

A lot of traffic uses both intersections, and the intersections are very close to each other, so a unified solution would make sense. I wish I could vote for both.

Bonus intersection: Mystic Valley Parkway and Auburn Street

I've seen more crashes at this intersection than any other. I've seen more red lights run at this intersection than any other. The light cycles are unclear, traffic often blocks the intersection, and a stunning number of cars end up using the wrong side of the road on Auburn Street coming from Whole Foods to turn left onto Mystic Valley Parkway.

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