Listen my children and you shall hear
of the three year project that is now near.
T'was the 16th of May in 2013
when KSA leaders helped MassDOT come clean.
|A bridge with pedestrians, bicyclists, autos and trains|
The innovation capitol of the world, a creative disruptor in its own right, got confirmation of a different kind of disruption coming into our ecosystem soon. Yesterday the Kendall Square Association hosted the design-build team from MassDOT. They shared with the community the range and duration of the Longfellow Bridge Closure over the next three years and the impact it will have on commuters and employees. What was less clear was the potential impact it will have on visitors and our business community as a whole.
Thanks go out to Sara Spaulding and Microsoft for providing the meeting space and to Alexandra, Janneke and the transportation committee of the KSA for arranging an informative meeting that merits more followup.
Kudos to MassDOT for continually taking the time to vet the project and gain community input. You can find the information going back to 2010 here but check out their excellent slide deck and a fabulous animated video (we're all visual types at Kendall Press) that helped attendees understand the magnitude of the work that will be done to restore and improve the Longfellow Bridge connecting Kendall Square to Boston. The results of which will deliver improved transportation for all involved –from bicyclists (a growing trademark of the Kendall Square area) to pedestrians and automobiles.
We also want to absolutely recognize MassDOT for their excellent and correct use of QR codes on their printed handouts. These folks got it right. Here's the website listing as it was printed in our handouts http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/charlesriverbridges/LongfellowBridge.aspx
The chances of typing it all correctly aren't good – but this QR code brings you right to the page. What a great enabler for the many mobile device users around the square.
Feel free to add your comments and questions here and stay tuned for updates on some questions that were raised but not yet fully answered:
- Who will be the one designated point of contact for project and jurisdictional issues?
- Will the DOT produce a revised set of travel time expectations for (motorists- particularly from Cambridge to the airport)
- With the Red Line already at MAX during rush hour, how will additional passengers be handled?
- How will season ticket holders for Red Sox, Bruins and Celtics get the word as North Station commuter traffic and game days take their toll?
There are six traffic stages that are needed to complete this project and you can see a great animated video of the project here.
There are going to be 25 weekends between July 2013 and Sept 2016 that there will be major disruptions but how about the day the day business travel needs?
Public outreach is going to be critical – particularly in a community that spans multiple generations in the work force and is a destination city for Innovation. Paper, pixels, print and real time web communications will be one key to getting the word out; reaching out to the many constituencies in their individual preferred modes of communication and transportation.
We need our MassDOT and love our MBTA Red Line for moving large numbers of people timely and reliably. This is a substantial business communications task. Stay tuned.