- In January, there will be a meeting to discuss streetscape improvement alternatives including interim improvements and future improvements in 5 and 15 years.
- Approximately two-thirds of the total project investment relates to underground utility improvements.
WATER SYSTEM IMPROVEMENTS
- New water mains will be needed on Somerville Ave (between Union Square and McGrath), Prospect Street, Washington Street b/w Bonner and Union Square plaza.
- Upkeep will be necessary (i.e. cleaning and lining existing water mains) on Webster Ave and Washington from Prospect Street to McGrath.
SANITARY/STORMWATER SYSTEM IMPROVEMENTS
- Project will include separating sewer and water pipe and adding capacity from heart of Union Square down Somerville Avenue to Pat’s Towing near McGrath.
- Will increase size of pipe from 72 inch to ~96 inches.
- Project is also looking at Washington Street (between Union Sq and McGrath) through a more global analysis done by another contractor.
- Project is identifying potential locations for stormwater overflow underground storage tanks.
- Questions were asked about impact of potential sea rise and/or increase in water table. Engineer noted that water coming down Somerville Ave can currently go to three places, all of which already require pumping water to another location.
- Two-thirds of Somerville’s water drainage comes down through Union Square.
- Cost of project: More than $10 million; more study necessary to develop cost estimate.
- The City will have to pay for some part of this. Will look for other sources.
TRAFFIC DATA COLLECTION
- Conducted traffic counts during AM/PM peak hours at 15 different intersections around Union Square
- Also did 4-day study (Thursday through Sunday) in April (week before Marathon and School Vacation Week)
- Looked at origin/destination of vehicles, crash rates (2009-2011), and signal timing data
- Captured data on cars, trucks, buses, bikes, pedestrians.
- Biggest difference from earlier studies show more traffic down Webster toward Kendall square (10-15% increase)
- AM Peak Bike Counts: Highest volume down Somerville Ave, Webster Ave, toward Kendall: ~100 bikes per hour
- PM Peak Bike Counts: Up Prospect, left on Somerville Ave
- AM Peak Pedestrian Counts: Over 100 ppl crossing Somerville Ave at Webster Ave and Prospect Street
- Moving forward, the city of Somerville will implement concurrent pedestrian phasing in high traffic areas when new projects are undertaken; aligns with Boston and Cambridge pedestrian signaling.
Captured bluetooth data at 9 locations in Union Square
- Transponders located at 9 points to pick up bluetooth signals
- Captured unique vehicles; no personal information is captured; technology adjusts for outliers (like multiple bluetooth signals from bus passengers)
- Able to capture 10-15% of vehicles during peak hours, which is a statistically significant sample.
- AM Peak: 61% of southbound Washington Street goes to Webster Ave
- PM Peak: 28% of northbound Prospect Ave go to Somverville Ave westbound
- Look at D2, Boynton Yards, and Brickbottom to look at development growth in the future; look at a 2035 design alternatives
- Develop traffic projections for 2035
- Will use projections to determine what capacity requirements are necessary and what design alternatives will meet need
- Will evaluate whether 2-way Webster and Prospect Ave can be implemented sooner.
Disclaimer: These notes are not official. Please check the official minutes for clarification of discussion points and decisions.