Boston Mayoral Candidates Talk Livable Streets, But Can They Walk the Walk?

At a forum held this week, Boston mayoral candidates demonstrated their fluency in the language of transportation alternatives and livable communities. But ideas for meaningful policy changes were largely missing, says Boston Streets.

As Mayor Thomas Menino winds down his fifth term in office, a burgeoning bike culture and 40 percent car-free population signify a city moving away from reliance on the automobile. And after 20 years under the same administration, the situation is ripe for a candidate willing to push for a truly multimodal future. 

With that opportunity evident, "[e]ight of the twelve candidates for Boston mayor gathered tonight at the Public Library for a forum on Transportation and Livable Communities," reports Boston Streets blog. "Each tripped over himself to proclaim his support for cycle tracks and protected bicycle facilities. The boisterous crowd cheered as candidates named their favorite neighborhoods and identified top transportation priorities, from changing our auto-oriented culture to embarking on comprehensive planning for the city."

But when it came time to address opportunities for congestion pricing and reforming the city's parking requirements, resolute advocacy was hard to find. 

"Still, while any of these candidates would likely continue to push Boston in the right direction, none seemed willing to make any drastic changes. Lip service toward increasing funding for the T and improving conditions for walking and biking may get them elected, but it is unclear how they would alter the decision-making process that produced our present transportation system."

Full Story: Boston Bike Lobby brings mayoral candidates to their knees

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
City Plate table setting

New Arrival! City Plates

City downtown cores printed on gorgeous decorative collectible porcelain plates.
$50.00
Book cover of Insider's Guide to Careers in Urban Planning

So you want to be a planner...

Check out our behind the scenes look at 25 careers in the Urban Planning field
Starting at $14.95