~Submitted by Bedford Mothers Out Front
Bedford Mothers Out Front supports the Minuteman Bikeway Extension and urges voters to vote Yes on Article 10 at Special Town Meeting. Though we fully understand that there are real trade-offs to consider, we believe that the benefits to a livable future are worth the potential costs, especially given where we are in the current dire trajectory of the climate crisis.
We believe that the Minuteman Bikeway Extension will protect children in the near term, creating an alternative route to schools and Bedford center that avoids streets filled with cars. We believe that it will aid in reducing carbon emissions from short car trips by facilitating more trips with bikes or e-bikes. And we believe that it begins to create infrastructure for a future where we’re not as reliant on cars for everyday local travel.
Though there are those in our organization with honest differences of opinion regarding the bikeway, we all share a concern for the future of our town and our world. Here are some reasons Mothers Out Front members support the bike path extension:
“I commute to work in Cambridge via the bike path a few days a week. Depending on the time you go it can either be peacefully empty or bustling with pedestrians, bikes, and every other type of human-powered transit. One of my favorite types of travelers to see are school-aged kids, often biking in groups, on their way to school in Lexington and Arlington. I support the Minuteman Bikeway Extension so that more students can bike similarly safely in Bedford.” – Laura Bergsten
“The Railroad Ave improvements would have been so appreciated by my children when they were in middle school. They would opt to walk the long way around through the high school fields rather than take the shorter route with the scary stretch on Railroad Ave.” – Renu Bostwick
“In 2019, the Bedford Hazard Mitigation Plan was updated, and as part of that process, town representatives considered climate change data and agreed that one of the top natural hazards facing Bedford is flooding. As climate change increases, we will likely have to spend more Town funds for drainage improvements to prevent flooding, as well as for repairs after extreme weather. Getting $11 million from State and Federal funds for the bikeway project, which includes drainage improvements along Railroad Ave and Commercial Ave, is prudent planning for the hardships we will face.” – Corinne Doud