Friday, February 17, 2012

Bad Planning

Botany Without Borders is usually a happy place. I like to think about plants, design, evolution, nature, and aesthetics. Don't you? But sometimes there are things that just make me mad.

Every day I cross the BU Bridge twice. About two years ago the State of Massachusetts funded bridge rehabilitation across the Commonwealth and the BU Bridge was one of the first projects.

Back then the planners did such a bad job. While they planned bike lanes for the completion date, they excluded pedestrians and bike riders in the interim plans. I went to numerous meetings, spoke with all kinds of city, local, and state officials, and finally got the message loud and clear: "We don't care."

I made a short video showing the dangers to bike riders and posted it on YouTube. In a couple of days more than 3000 people had viewed it on and the Governor's Office called me at my office, "How can we ameliorate the problem?"

Fast forward to today. The pedestrian or bike rider traveling to and from Cambridge has to pass a series of incredibly noisy, polluting, dangerous engines that are supposedly there to keep the bridge from freezing. was 52F when I left work this afternoon.

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