Platform & Candidates

Bicycle Safety Platform

There are over 200 miles of streets in Cambridge. The 2015 Bicycle Plan calls for protected bike lanes on approximately 20 miles of major thoroughfares to create a safe, city-wide protected network that serves residents of all ages and abilities. Approximately 4 miles of these protected bike lanes have been installed. I will vote for a municipal ordinance that requires the city to install at least 4 miles of pop-up protected bike lanes each year until the city-wide protected network is complete and to install permanent protected bike lanes when the streets specified as part of the city-wide protected network are reconstructed.

We asked the candidates whether they would support this platform.

“Please explain why you indicated that you would or would not vote for an ordinance like that described in the platform.”

Click here for a printable version of the 2017 Cambridge Bicycle Safety voter’s guide

or

Click here for a copy of our 2017 Cambridge Bicycle Safety mailer

 

Want to learn more? Read our FAQ.

 

CandidateBicycle Safety PlatformStreetsPAC
Safe Streets
Other
Endorsements
Dennis Carlone (I)√ Yes   Comments√ Proven AllyCRA OR
Jan Devereux (I)√ Yes   Comments√ Proven AllyCRA OR
Marc McGovern (I)√ Yes   Comments√ Proven AllyABC
Quinton Zondervan√ Yes   Comments√ Proven AllyCRA OR
Adriane Musgrave√ Yes   Comments√ Promising NewcomerABC
Sumbul Siddiqui√ Yes   Comments√ Promising NewcomerCRA OR
Vatsady Sivongxay√ Yes   Comments√ Promising NewcomerCRA OR
Denise Simmons (I)√ Yes   Comments Not EndorsedABC
Olivia D'Ambrosio√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Sam Gebru√ Yes   Comments Not EndorsedABC
Ilan Levy√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Alanna Marie Mallon√ Yes   Comments Not EndorsedABC
Gregg Moree√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Hari Pillai√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Bryan Sutton√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Nadya Okamoto√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Jeffrey Santos√ Yes   Comments Not EndorsedOR
Sean Tierney√ Yes   Comments Not EndorsedABC
Gwendolyn Volmar√ Yes   Comments Not Endorsed
Craig Kelley (I)No   Comments Not Endorsed
Timothy Toomey (I)No   Comments Not Endorsed
Paul TonerNo   Comments Not Endorsed
Ronald BenjaminNo   Comments Not Endorsed
Josh BurginNo   Comments Not Endorsed
Dan LenkeNo   Comments Not Endorsed
Richard HardingNo   Comments Not Endorsed

(I) = Incumbent

Craig Kelley

No response.

Denise Simmons

Said Yes to platform.

I believe my statement on my website speaks to my reasons on this: www.denisesimmons.com/safer_streets

Dennis Carlone

Said Yes to platform.

This platform sets an excellent, ambitious goal. Cambridge has taken the first steps towards improving its bike network. Now it’s time to add new bike lanes and refine existing bike lanes with good urban design and strategic master planning of our public ways. It’s about striking the proper balance between our new plans and our community concerns. We must improve our planning and neighborhood interaction process when expanding our bike network. This will quicken the pace of neighborhood acclimation over time, provide an opportunity to refine bike lane design plans before they are physically installed, and open educational opportunities so we can remind drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists to share the road safely and harmoniously, according to the proper rules.

With my urban design background, and based on my Council record, I am a proud, natural ally to the Cambridge bicycle community. In my previous term, I sponsored and passed an ordinance requiring city-owned trucks to have side guards that protect bicyclists and pedestrians from getting trapped underneath. During my current term, I have supported expanding Cambridge’s bike network of protected lanes and led the successful effort to decrease our speed limit to 20 and 25 mph. My ultimate goal is to make the pop-up bike lanes permanent with appealing raised tracks and different styles of curbs to keep bike and car traffic safely separated. We also need to install Dutch-style protected intersections at several of our major cross streets. These new intersections would create well-defined buffer zones between bike, foot, and car traffic at crossings and dramatically increase safety for turning bicycles. These redesigns would also provide a natural traffic calming effect, which makes the road safer for everyone, no matter how they’re traveling.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Jan Devereux

Said Yes to platform.

I support this because it’s important that we complete a safe protected network and we will need to set reasonable achievable goals like this to make it happen on a timely basis. Completing the network laid out in the Bike Plan is critical to increasing ridership among the large segment of physically able people of all ages who have said they would ride more often if a protected network existed. It would also serve to normalize protection on our busiest streets so that everyone would become more familiar and comfortable with these arrangements. It’s also important that we work toward a regional network.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Marc McGovern

Said Yes to platform.

Not long after Amanda Phillips was killed, my 16 year old son fell into the street after being ‘doored’ while riding his bike. Luckily, he escaped with just bruises and cuts, but if a car had been coming at that moment, he easily could have been yet another fatality on Cambridge streets. As someone who doesn’t ride a bike, I’ve always supported bike infrastructure, but I never had a personal experience with bike safety before that incident. This near-miss, punch-in-the-gut moment made me realize how urgent the issue is and how unnecessarily protracted the process has been. I am signing this pledge, despite many of my constituents asking me not to, because I believe that it will provide an impetus for the swift development of the city-wide network of protected lanes that we desperately need. In addition, I will be looking for opportunities to create respectful dialog between cyclists and non-cyclists about how to safely share our roads. Motivated by the need to ensure the safety of my own bike-riding kids, I am deeply committed to doing all I can to help protect and encourage all cyclists.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Timothy Toomey

No response.

Adriane Musgrave

Said Yes to platform.

My name is Adriane Musgrave, and I am a first-time candidate for City Council. I’ve been a long-time bike commuter and road cyclist – 10+ years riding through the city. I highly support the installation of more bike lanes to make the city safer for cyclists, pedestrians, and car drivers. Given the historic nature of our city and the narrow streets, we will need a combination of bike lane protections, including separated bike lanes, painted lanes, and “sharrows.” I especially want to see more bike lanes and safe street initiatives invested in our lower income neighborhoods. Changing our built environment is a complex process. It’s my intention to work collaboratively with our city departments to ensure a prompt, safe, and highly communicative roll-out of a network of bike lanes.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Alanna Marie Mallon

Said Yes to platform.

Cambridge should be moving toward a city-wide system of connected bike lanes while integrating robust public transit, the Green Line Expansion, pedestrians, and residents who drive cars out of necessity. The “Complete Streets” goals outlined in the Cambridge Bicycle Plan do just that by ensuring safety for all modes of transportation and bicycling comfort levels. The question isn’t whether we’re pursuing Vision Zero, but how. As we’ve seen by piloting a number of different designs, some bike lanes are better at serving the overall goal of increasing safety than others, and I want to work to carve out the safest and most efficient pathways through the City. A debate and passage of the proposed municipal ordinance needs to be part of a broader conversation about how people move in our City, because bike lanes and other revitalization projects can only be successful with a robust community buy-in and participation.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Bryan Sutton

Said Yes to platform.

Personally, my primary mode of transportation is by bicycle. I always wear a helmet, abide by traffic laws, and try to be consistent and predictable in my movement. Even so, I have an NDE (Near Door Experience) about once a month and it is jarring. I am lucky to not have been involved in an accident. Biking is the fastest, most efficient method of travel around Cambridge and the amount of riders is increasing. This is a matter of public safety and I 100% support an ordinance of 4 miles per year that gets us to 20 miles of protected bike lines.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Dan Lenke

No response.

Gregg Moree

Said Yes to platform.

I support The Bicycle Safety Platform for a number of reasons. Too many people trying to cross the street, or cyclists, are injured or killed on our streets. We have to make our roads safer for everyone.
Bicycles also promote a better environment, less pollution and congestion.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Gwendolyn Volmar

Said Yes to platform.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Hari Pillai

Said Yes to platform.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Ilan Levy

Said Yes to platform.

My bike is my primary mode of transportation, I think it is incomprehensible to be taking so long to create a real bike infrastructure, one which has protected bike lanes on all major thoroughfares. When the issue of traffic and transport is raised during upzoning discussions, which East Cambridge has seen quite a bit off, we always hear that the “policy” of the city is to make using a car more painful, to encourage alternate modes of transportation. If we had accompanied said “policy” with a firm plan to improve our bicycle infrastructure, all thoroughfares would already have protected bike lanes, which could have saved lives. But Cambridge to often pays lips service to such issue, waiting until tragedy strike to actually act. Not only would I support your proposed policy, I would require the City to act much more quickly. We can’t allow another bicyclist to die while riding, it is too high of cost for inaction. If we want to reduce car usages we need protected bike lanes, we can’t talk about one without the other.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Jeffrey Santos

Said Yes to platform.

I am excited about the opportunity to focus on bike safety and want to build a long term relationship with your organization. While I agree with the goals I would like to see those who need parking spaces to be included in the goals of Bike safety and together we can share the roads. I also have a plan for a bike path and along the sides of the commuter rail line from North Station thru Porter Square and all the way towards Fitchburg. I am also a supporter of the Grand Junction proposed bike path and pedestrian pathway as well.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

John Burgin

No response.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Nadya Okamoto

Said Yes to platform.

I am a huge supporter of sustainable forms of transportation, and it is clear (from my conversations while canvassing and reading into the current opportunities for biking and walking) that we have so much room to grow in terms of bicycle and pedestrian safety. I see this as the first step to getting closer to that goal.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Olivia D’Ambrosio

Said Yes to platform.

For the health of our climate and the quality of life in our city, we need to move away from car-centric models of urban travel; everyone, including but not limited to bikers, deserves safe travel conditions.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Paul Toner

Said No to platform.

I am committed to creating a comprehensive and safe network of bicycle paths through the city, however, I cannot commit to vote in support of this proposed ordinance at this time. The City has been experimenting with variations of bicycle paths with very mixed reviews. I want to take the time to engage more people in the conversation (bicyclists, small business owners, emergency responders, impacted residents, etc) and review the findings of the city staff before committing to specific forms of bike lanes, and mandated benchmarks. I do not want to see artificial delays or roadblocks to reaching our goal of a safe and comprehensive network of bike lanes but I also want to be straightforward with you and not commit myself to a proposal based solely on one groups perspective when many other individuals and groups need to be engaged in the process of creating and implementing a long term solution. If elected, I look forward to working with you and many others to reach a positive outcome.

Quinton Zondervan

Said Yes to platform.

I’ve been a bicycle commuter in Cambridge since 1992 when I came here to study at MIT, and I fully endorse this platform. I’ve been a member of the Bicycle Safety Committee from the beginning, and one of my top priorities on city council would be to adopt a full plan for creating a connected network of protected bicycle lanes in Cambridge that connect us to the growing regional network of such lanes as well. Thanks for your advocacy!

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Richard Harding

No response.

Ronald Benjamin

No response.

Sam Gebru

Said Yes to platform.

I’m fully supportive of installing a complete network of safe bike lanes across our city within a set timeframe. I believe we need to do this with deliberate intent but also in an inclusive way that involves various stakeholders in our city as well as neighboring municipal governments to ensure our bike lanes can be continuous beyond borders. We can realize the objectives of the Cambridge Bicycle Plan while also building consensus and understanding among various interests, and I’m committed to do such.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Sean Tierney

Said Yes to platform.

I sign this pledge with some reservation because of the nuance that is required in formulating a comprehensive public policy that requires a plan to accommodate bikes, cars, pedestrians, and public transit, particularly in a city that is not designed for this type of multi-use.

But we need to figure it out. We’ve experienced tragedy as a city with the loss of life. As a candidate, I have heard from people who are living with chronic pain from accidents. I also ride a bike and at times roll up on the sidewalk because I can’t handle the stress of cars, trucks, other bikes, as well as parked cars. The future of Cambridge, and all cities for that matter, is livable, walkable, transit-oriented neighborhoods where a car isn’t necessary and people can commute safely.

With this commitment that I am signing, I think we should also establish a transportation working group. Membership would be comprised of one member of the Cambridge Bike Safety group, a representative from the Business Associations (e.g. Harvard, Central, East, etc..), one member of the school committee, one member from the City Council, a member from the Community Development Department, A member from the council on aging, A member from Cambridge Police, a member from Cambridge Fire, and three Cambridge resident members selected by the City Manager who have experience or interest in transportation, city planning, civil engineering, or any other relevant background that could be helpful to the discussion.

This group would be charged with discussing with each other ideas for improving bike safety, such as, but not limited to, separated lanes, pop-up lanes, traffic enforcement; challenges to small business (e.g. parking); lessons learned from the Cambridge St. and Brattle St. implementation; as well as model designs from other cities.

This group would also be responsible for disseminating information to their respective constituencies about upcoming meetings regarding bike lanes, pop-up lanes, and road reconstruction.

At the end of the day, a Vision Zero Policy does not have to be a zero-sum game. We must work together to plan for Cambridge’s future, and the first step is to start talking to each other.

-Sean

Sumbul Sidiqqui

Said Yes to platform.

Studies have found that people are far more likely to use protected bike lanes than unprotected ones. As I have canvassed for the last 5 months, I understand how important this issue is and understand the need and why we must take concentrate steps to move forward. Stakeholder engagement is key to ensuring the appropriate location and use of new bike lanes. The CDD and City must make it a priority to meet with cyclists and non-cyclists alike to find optimal locations for these lanes which will actually be used and sustained.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

Vatsady Sivongxay

Said Yes to platform.

Cambridge has developed a Bicycle Plan and vision. Now we need an implementation plan, and this goal of installing at least 4 miles of protected bike lanes should be part of it.

Vision Zero questionnaire responses

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