Letter to the Quincy Sun Regarding Traffic Safety

To the Editor:

As an advocacy organization for Quincy’s most vulnerable road users – pedestrians and bicyclists – Quincycles applauds the Quincy Police Department for its aggressive education and enforcement actions that have done so much to reduce the number of pedestrian traffic fatalities in our city. Lt. Minton highlighted their many laudable achievements in last week’s front page article. Thank you, Quincy Police Department.

Education and enforcement obviously do a great deal to increase the empathy and awareness we all need to share our roads safely. However, recent tragedies indicate we can and should do more. Our police department should not bear the brunt of this effort alone. Quincy can take steps to increase the safety of all its residents as we redesign our roads and intersections.

Many of Quincy’s roads have wide lanes that invite speeding and create barriers to safe pedestrian crossings, even with crosswalks. A number of concerned neighbors brought up these very issues at a public meeting last October 28th regarding the redesign of Sea Street currently underway.

Some of our newest intersections fail to take bicyclists into consideration at all and prioritize car traffic flow over the safe movement of other road users. Lt. Minton cited Hancock Street near North Quincy High School specifically as a location that requires pedestrians to have a heightened awareness in order to remain safe. What design elements could have provided a better balance of safety for all, good traffic flow, and mutual awareness?

Mayor Koch spoke of a 21st century transportation system in his inaugural address. Quincycles hopes this transportation system will prioritize moving people – pedestrians, drivers, bicyclists, and public transit users – not just moving cars. Quincy needs a comprehensive plan for multimodal transportation to take our city into a safer, less congested future. We need a plan that will aid our hardworking police force as we all work toward a goal of zero deaths on our roads.

Irene Lutts



March 18, 2016