since 2019, a municipal code in Cambridge has called for local road reconstruction projects to include the addition of separate cycle lanes. A plan to build 25 miles of protected bike lanes, to be built over a period of five to seven years, was approved next year. But some residents and business owners want to prevent further construction work.
On Friday, a group called Cambridge Streets for All lodged a complaint with the Middlesex Superior Court Application for determination and injunctive relief. The plaintiffs argue that the city’s bike lane boom caused “irreparable damage” to the group’s members and resulted in a “dramatic downturn in business.”
“Businesses like restaurants are unable to restock efficiently because long-standing on-street loading zones have been eliminated and moved to less accessible locations,” the plaintiffs write in the filing. “Physicians and healthcare professionals affiliated with the CSA have seen, or expect to see, a drastic reduction in patient visits as patients are unable to find parking or accessible parking that meets their needs.”
The lawsuit also cites concerns about loss of accessible parking, increased traffic on side streets and possible impact on emergency vehicles attempting to get through the area, and alleges that the city failed to garner enough public input into the planning process for the project. With Cambridge City Council Meeting on April 25th, local residents spoke for almost three hours about the proposed bike lanes, with some in favor of the construction and others against. Ultimately, seven out of nine council members voted against a proposed policy order that would have ordered the city’s Department of Transportation and Parks to suspend plans for “rapid construction” of bicycle infrastructure in the Porter Square area. An injunction hearing is set for Friday at 2pm, the Middlesex Superior Court file shows.
(Copyright (c) 2022 State House News Service.
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