I have been watching this Dedham Square project unfold and as I see some of the changes, I have to beg the question... Did any intelligent, rational thought even go into this plan?
I want to see the shops get more business. We’re all for small business, but does anyone really think bigger sidewalks in a square that already has traffic pitfalls and back ups is the way to go?
Let me start with that extended sidewalk in front of the police station. Before, rush hour traffic would be backed up with commuters coming from High Street, or the Needham Area, with 3 lanes in front of the police station.
Now you have one lane, and many people catch Washington Street there. So without the option of being able to go around the folks going left, the traffic is going to be backed up worse.
What was a 30 minute commute could turn in 45 minutes to an hour to get to and go through the square. I would love to meet the person that is going to want to shop in the square after going through that mess. Commuters are going to get frustrated and start using the quiet Upper Dedham side streets and then those folks are going to be upset by increased traffic.
The next foolish idea is going on across from Centre Deli and the shops in that area. The plan is to have diagonal parking across the street. So now we’re going to have folks backing out of spaces on High Street? This is absolutely maddening. At least on Washington Street there is plenty of room to have that kind of parking. So folks who have to sit for almost an hour to get through the square now have to deal with folks trying to back out of spaces on the other end? Again, where is the rational thought process here? Was there ever one?
I hear family members and friends complain about folks not stopping for pedestrians in the crosswalks. The square before this project was frustrating to navigate. How likely are drivers going to be to let pedestrians cross when they have to sit in backed up traffic longer to get through the square? I’m going to guess this problem also gets worse.
I don’t see this project as an improvement to get people to come to the square. I see it as a deterrent. I will not be coming to the square as often once this is completed and it’s lousy because I love the coffee at Mocha Java, The food at Centre Deli, I enjoy occasionally going to Dedham Community Theatre and Dedham Flower Shoppe. I just won’t be frequenting these places as often because they are in the square and the town made it more impossible for me to come here.
I have a bad feeling that this project aimed at helping improve business in the square may ultimately hurt these businesses because navigating the square will be harder. And I think people will be even more frustrated coming there then they already are. I just don’t think any of these pitfalls with driving were planned for. I think the town just decided to make the square more attractive, but didn’t look at all of the logistics. What happens when we get snow? This square is going to be a nightmare to drive through.
I’m probably writing what many other folks are already thinking. Was this voted on? I don’t recall this ever being presented for a vote, but I could be wrong. I seriously can’t see the town voting on this. I’m sorry, but I simply do not think any intelligence went into this plan nor was there a rational thought. So my tax dollars are being used to deter me from going to the square. Isn’t this wonderful? Thanks Dedham.
I am a huge supporter of this town and it annoys me to no end when we do foolish things like this and people from other towns that I know laugh at us when we do these nonsensical things. I’m personally disappointed in this project and will be frequenting the square a lot less.