Featured Transportation

Reader Poll: What Do You Think of the Northern Ave. Bridge Design Plans?


New design concepts for the Northern Avenue Bridge project featuring a “people first” plan were released on Tuesday, December 10, 2019.

The design features two spans crossing the channel – one that would be for buses, shuttles, and emergency vehicles, and the other for pedestrians and cyclists. There would also be a public space underneath the spans for people to congregate and enjoy the space.

This is the basic plan, and then there are added design concepts of the bridge arch and underneath pavilion. See all documents from this latest presentation at NorthernAveBridgebos.com.

What do you think of the new two-span design concept? Are you in favor of it or would you like to see something different? Vote in our poll and add your comments in the section below.

Web polls are unscientific and reflect only those who choose to participate. NorthEndWaterfront.com polls do not have any official significance and are only intended for the interest of our readers.


While you’re here … we have a favor to ask. Now in our 10th year, we are covering more community issues than ever before. We are thrilled that our readership has continued to grow rapidly. And unlike other news sites, we have decided to keep all our posts free and open to all. But, advertising doesn’t bring in enough to pay for reporting or editorial work. We do it because we believe community news is important – and we think you do too. If everyone who reads this site, who likes it, puts in a bit to pay for it, then our future would be much more secure. We need your support to keep us going. Please contribute online at the links below or checks can be made out to North End Boston LLC, 343 Commercial St. #508, Boston 02109. Become a Patron for as little as $2/month to receive free rewards including neighborhood photo calendars, custom tote bags and special updates from the editor.
*Become a Patron (Rewards!)* or *Make a One-Time Contribution*
Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to our local organization. It only takes a minute. Thank you.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

32 Replies to “Reader Poll: What Do You Think of the Northern Ave. Bridge Design Plans?

  1. Since when does a bicyclist acknowledge the existence of a pedestrian (cue the bike Mafia)? Not sure they could coexist on the same pathway.

  2. Design is great. Construction process is leaving a lot to be desired. Lanes on the bridge shut down for parking. The right turn from Commercial north into the bridge is always a disaster. Police detail needed to move cars along. North Wnders go straight and then make the turn ( because we knot to, because we’ve suffered everyday in the line), but now police have ticketed for that. Great to have a dedicated buke lane in N Washington St but none of the accommodations help north end dwellers.

    1. Jared, There are approximately 1.2 million people who live and work in Boston at any given time where as there are about 200k in Providence. Put your bicycle fetish aside for a second and think realistically.

      1. As you note, Boston has a larger population, so we need to maximize efficiency. A lane for cars is literally the least efficient usage. Per hour, a 10 foot lane can carry:

        1,200 private cars
        7,500 bicycles
        9,000 pedestrians

        Despite your anecdotal experience, there are already 40,000 bike trips taken in Boston EVERY DAY. Imagine how much worse the already crippling congestion would be if those 40,000 trips were taken by private vehicle. That’s exactly what we’re encouraging when we build MORE infrastructure for vehicles.

        If we are serious about wanting to reduce congestion, we must invest in modes of transportation that are more efficient.

        On another note, I’m very passionate about our neighborhood. And this site is one of the primary places for discourse about things that affect us. It saddens me greatly when someone who HAS put thought and research into a topic is met with flippant snarky responses like yours, Corky and MichaelD and Phil below. We have a great platform for public discourse. Let’s treat it like one.

        1. And, sure, you might be able to find a site on the internet that tells a different story. But the question is: it it credible?

          You can view the raw data of the numbers I cite here:
          https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1MwJJVUVwca-_U1102mcun6_EbpM2cI1-2jNfa5taxSs/edit?usp=sharing

          The full 143 page study is here:
          https://www.boston.gov/sites/default/files/file/document_files/2018/02/2017_boston_bike_counts_report.pdf

          Those are credible sources that draw conclusions based on research and facts. I stand by my original statement: If we are serious about wanting to reduce congestion, we must invest in modes of transportation that are more efficient.

          1. What makes that credible Adam? Because the city put it out? I’m sure that they would never skew any numbers to make themselves look good after spending millions and millions of dollars on the bike lane. As Noah said you can put out all the numbers you’d like but go sit on commercial street today and count how many bikes as opposed to how many cars you see go by. Oh and those millions were not paid by bicyclists, they were paid through taxes that car owners pay.

        1. Triggered? Not me, Jared. Just trying to point out the fact that this bridge doesn’t make sense. My F350 triggers you though 😉

          1. I can think of no better way to frustrate you on a daily basis, then by giving you a F350 and requiring you to drive and park in the North End. Thanks for taking care of the payments yourself!

  3. I doubt that these people who oppose automobiles realize how much revenue the State & cities reap in taxes & fees insurance rates, excise tax garages ,tolls ,inspection & registration fees from people who own & operate a vehicle in this state. Not to mention the state & fed tax on gasoline which the state wants a 17 cent increase per gallon of gas.This particular bridge like the majority of roads in this state has been neglected for decades.

    1. @MichealD. Harvard researchers literally just proved you wrong. Cars cost the state $64B annually, but drivers only pay LESS THAN 43% of that amount through gas taxes, excise taxes, tolls, etc. I hope you enjoy the handout.

      Here’s the source: http://bit.ly/2s85Uaj

  4. The Seaport is a tourist destination and the Northern Ave feeds it. They need a tour bus lane to feed the hungry tourist ripoffs. How does anyone make money off bikes?

  5. Adam – As a proponent of bike accessibility in this city, are you still riding during freezing cold conditions like the past two mornings? What about when there’s snow/black ice coating the streets? On my way to work this morning, there was not a single biker out there. Do you think it’s fiscally sound/reasonable to spend millions of tax dollars building a bike-centric structure that is only fully utilized for 6-7 months of the year? And 40k bike rides a day, give me a break! City is juicing those stats BIG TIME.

  6. Seriously, I agree with you 100%. I am hoping & praying we have 3 Lanes on each side of the
    N. Washington/Charlestown Bridge. The main objective should be to move traffic over the bridge
    as safely & quickly as possible. Amen

      1. Jared, you seem to have a stat for everything. So maybe you can tell me how much revenue does the city & state take in just from parking meters, tickets and the thieves excuse me I meant the parking garages. While we’re at it how much do the bike riders contribute?

  7. Jared, I have the right bridge. The Northern Ave. Bridge doesn’t effect the No. End, only the
    Seaport. I think the Northern Ave. Bridge is an improvement compared to what is there now. It
    seems to me that the city is only worried about tourist not those of us paying the city taxes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *