Carmageddon: Improving Congestion Message Signs in Cambridge

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Added by Michael Cahn

On Hills Rd Bridge (etc) a large message sign displaying 5 lines of text and two screens warns of delays because of upcoming building work in central Cambridge (Lensfield Rd etc)

I am minded to write to the city early on Monday

Re: Message signs warning of congestion due to street works

Dear Madam, Sir,

We would like to make an suggestion regarding the text displayed on the mobile message signs currently warning of major road works and congestion. Our suggestions would be to add the words “Thanks for cycling” and “Try the bicycle to avoid delays” (alternating).

We believe it is entirely appropriate to use any major road-works as an opportunity to encourage the use of active transportation, because it is proven to reduce congestion. Such messages will also deliver an important message about the status of cycling in the city. The expression of gratitude expressed in the first suggestion is especially important, as it sets a tone of public appreciation.

We would also like to remind you that a recent Freeway closure in Los Angeles was widely advertised by local authorities as “Carmageddon” and residents were encouraged to participate in local bike rides, organised by the regional transportation authority (METRO), to overcome the expected delays. Given our own little Carmageddon, should Cambridge not do the same ?

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Feedback please, contacts, CCs to the press, Travel to work, etc

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