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longfellow-bridge-open-separated-bike-lane-may-31-2018MassDOT has announced that in order to promote safe multimodal travel and ensure optimal snow clearing operations during the winter months, crews will be removing the vertical flex posts which separate the bicycle lanes and vehicular travel lanes on the Longfellow Bridge beginning the evening of Sunday, December 16. MassDOT plans to re-install the flex posts in spring 2019 after the conclusion of the snow and ice season.

 After receiving stakeholder input and reviewing snow removal options, MassDOT made the decision to remove the vertical flex posts for the winter so that crews and snow plows will have access to the full width of the bridge during and after storm events. This will ensure that the vehicular travel lanes, bicycle lanes, gutter line, and drainage structures are all cleared at the same time.

These flex posts will be removed during overnight hours starting Sunday, December 16, and this work is expected to be completed in approximately four nights. Work will take place each evening between 9 p.m., and 5 a.m.

Snow removal on the Longfellow Bridge is being carried out through a partnership between MassDOT and the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). During winter weather events, DCR crews will plow and clear the bridge as operations and conditions necessitate, and snow will be removed from approximately one half of the width of the sidewalks. After the storm has concluded, MassDOT and DCR crews will then close the bridge to traffic or implement lane closures in order to remove snow and ice from the vehicular lane, bicycle lane and sidewalk using front end loaders and other equipment.

Both MassDOT and DCR recognize the importance of this roadway as a primary commuting route for drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians. As such, both agencies work together to ensure conditions are as accessible as possible during a storm event. Additionally, the Draft Statewide Pedestrian Plan, and the upcoming Draft Statewide Bicycle Plan both address the need to ensure winter maintenance of bicycle and pedestrian facilities to allow access by multimodal travelers.

Motorists are reminded that the speed limit along the Longfellow Bridge is 25 miles per hour. During winter storms, travelers should reduce speeds, drive the conditions and devote their full attention to what is ahead on the road.

For more information regarding snow clearing operations, as well contact information for submitting feedback on snow clearing efforts, members of the public can visit the DCR Winter Storm Plan website.

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