Charlestown residents need new transportation options that are green, healthy, economical, and fun. Charlestown businesses need easier access for visitors. The proposed expansion of Hubway into Charlestown achieves both goals, and lays a strong foundation for future Hubway expansion across our whole neighborhood. I just signed the attached petition. Please add your support!
We believe Hubway will greatly benefit the neighborhood, bringing a much needed alternative mode of transportation that is environmentally friendly, healthy, economical, and fun. Residents will rely on it for commuting to downtown, and our local businesses stand to benefit from easier access for visitors. As the MBTA limits services and raises fares, the timing of this $100,000 investment in Charlestown couldn’t be better.
The two proposed locations are not perfect from all perspectives, and more will be needed in future expansions. Most concerning is that these first two stations are not placed closest to dense housing areas where residents most need new transportation options, and do little to help northbound travel near Sullivan Square. We understand and applaud the Charlestown Neighborhood Council representatives who voiced these fairness concerns. We also encourage Boston Bikes and Hubway to expand the subsidized membership program, and advertise that program when starting in Charlestown.
However, the most important first step is laying a successful foundation for Hubway. To work well, locations have to balance distance to other stations (especially the large one at TD Garden), proximity to high-traffic routes and destinations, ability of Hubway’s drivers to “balance” bikes across stations daily, and revenue-generating potential from advertising. To get all that right, we respect the expertise that Hubway staff has developed over the past year in choosing locations, leading to the world’s most successful roll-out of a bike share program.
Once Hubway is successfully established, we pledge to advocate for future expansion to improve access across all of Charlestown. Right now, we urge the CNC, Boston Bikes, and Hubway to move forward immediately with the installation of the two proposed stations in mid-August.