Boston City Councilor and mayoral candidate Andrea Campbell released a comprehensive plan to build a safe, sustainable, multi-modal transportation network in Boston to support a more equitable future and green economy. Campbell’s plan details strategies to create 15-minute neighborhoods throughout Boston, safe streets that build social connectivity and cohesion, an equitable public transit system that expands access to economic opportunity and addresses the disproportionate impact of fossil-fuel pollution on low-income communities, and a city-wide bike network that connects all neighborhoods.
“Boston has an historic opportunity to rebuild and reimagine our city’s transportation system with safe and well-connected streets, better buses, and less traffic and air pollution,” said Councilor Campbell. “This plan takes an equitable, people-centered approach to transportation so that we can ensure all Bostonians have access to what they need within a 15-minute trip from their doorstep, reduce traffic and congestion on our streets, support economic mobility by building a more reliable, affordable, accessible public transit system, and improve health and safety on every street in every neighborhood.”
Campbell’s plan details six key strategies:
1. Build a City of 15-minute Neighborhoods. With city-led investments, intentional zoning, and mixed-use transit-oriented development, residents can have everything they need – grocery stores, schools, parks, small businesses – within 15 minutes of their doorsteps. Andrea will expand planning capacity and accelerate project implementation for building safer neighborhood streets for all users; immediately implement inexpensive traffic calming measures like daylighting intersections; invest in street projects that serve to connect our neighborhoods, prioritize communal gathering, build social connectivity and cohesion, and increase economic activity; and expand pilot programs that open streets to people, support our local restaurants and nightlife, and create place-making events like community block parties.
2. Make the Bus Work Better For Bostonians. Andrea will work with State leaders, other municipalities, and the private sector to make local buses free for passengers, a move that will make bus routes more efficient, enable low-income workers to save more, and attract new riders to one of the most cost-effective modes of transit. She will expand bus rapid transit, dedicated bus lanes, and signal prioritization to make commutes shorter and more reliable; work with the MBTA to transition our bus fleet to electric and decrease emissions especially along routes in communities of color, and accelerate the bus network redesign to expand bus service along key corridors and new routes to regional job centers.
3. Embrace Technology and Innovation to Lead a Just Transition. Andrea will expand training programs to ensure city residents have access to the green jobs of the future; ensure entrepreneurs of color have the career experiences, networks, and access to capital to be able to participate fully in these high-growth sectors in the green economy; and ensure businesses owned by women and people of color have access to city contracts for construction. Andrea will lead efforts to regulate Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) so that they play a more constructive role in the transportation ecosystem and reduce congestion; expand access to electric vehicle charging; and electrify the City’s vehicle fleet, including our school buses.
4. Build Connected, Low-Stress Opportunities for Biking. Boston needs a city-wide connected bike network that is safe, includes protected lanes, and is attractive to all riders, including children, families, and older adults. Andrea will accelerate the construction of bike facilities to meet this goal by 2030, partner with labor unions to create more jobs for neighborhood residents during construction, and expand programming for anyone interested in learning how to bike, including in Boston Public Schools, that reduces cost barriers to biking and encourages biking in Black and brown neighborhoods. She will also work with State government to legalize e-scooters, e-bikes, and other small electric mobility devices that give residents additional, affordable transit options for short trips.
5. Become the Commonwealth’s Leading Advocate for MBTA Improvements. Andrea will set a clear vision for the future of Boston’s transit system, fight for riders, and push the MBTA to ensure that the public transportation system serving Boston, particularly communities of color, receives the investment it needs. She will work with State and Federal officials to transform our “commuter” rail network into a regional rail network that meets the needs of a 21st century economy, including electrification of the Fairmount Line, a standard subway fare for all Boston stops, and more frequent service; build a cohesive vision for water transportation between Boston’s neighborhoods; and support efforts to raise revenue for investments in transportation through the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI). Andrea will also ensure Boston has a dedicated seat on the new MBTA Board and MassDOT Board of Directors.
6. Lead Comprehensive and Equitable Regional Planning and Investment. In addition to MBTA, Andrea will partner closely with DCR and Massport in crafting and executing her vision of more equitable planning and development processes for State roadways and transit projects in Boston, including by centering the I-90 redesign on Allston and transit, completing the Red-Blue Line connection, and expanding access to our rail network with stops in neighborhoods underserved by rapid transit.
Over the last several weeks, Campbell has also released a comprehensive environmental justice plan, public safety and criminal justice plan, education plan, economic recovery plan, and three public health plans, including a COVID-19 recovery plan and a plan to address the crisis at Mass & Cass. Over the next few weeks, Campbell will release more of her policy platform, including plans on housing, good government, equity and more.