Shattuck Campus Redevelopment at Morton Street Proposal Comment Letter

Shattuck Campus Redevelopment at Morton Street Proposal Comment Letter

April 23, 2021

Loryn Sheffner, DCAMM
1 Ashburton Place, Suite 107 Boston, MA 02108

Re: Shattuck Campus Redevelopment at Morton Street Proposal

Dear Loryn,

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the Shattuck Campus Redevelopment Proposal. If the 13-acre Shattuck Campus site will be redeveloped for public health purposes, we hope the project will address connections to and along Morton Street to make it safer and more convenient for pedestrians, and reconnect Franklin Park to this side of the neighborhood. We suggest that the housing development plan, if adopted, include an enforceable requirement of wide, accessible walking paths and tree canopy in the spirit of the Olmsted Plan.

One of the high level planning principles identified is to “improve access to neighborhoods with public transit, bike and pedestrian options.” This project, in conjunction with the greater Franklin Park Action Plan, has the potential to more deliberately restore public access to the park from the Morton Street side. The state needs to think beyond the borders of the project bounds in order to make this happen.

While Morton Street is a MassDOT road, two of the roads that feed into it with similar cross sections, American Legion Highway and Blue Hill Avenue, are listed on the City of Boston’s High Crash Network in the top 3% of streets for motor vehicle crashes. The high speed design of Morton Street impacts all other modes. It feels uncomfortable and is an unpleasant walking and biking environment; there are sections of the street that do not have sidewalks on either side. The bus stop on Morton Street to access the Shattuck site was made accessible in the last few years by removing the center median barrier and adding curb ramps, yet the existing unsignalized crossing of multiple vehicle lanes is still dangerous for people walking. The project site is not far from the Forest Hills MBTA station, yet seems much further since Morton Street is poorly designed at this point for walking.

We hope that there will be a collaborative focus on traffic calming beyond the immediate project footprint incorporated into this redevelopment project and adjacent park effort by DCAMM, MassDOT, and the City of Boston.


Brendan Kearney, Deputy Director

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