Anyone who has been to New York City will have seen the "Don't Block the Box" signs. Now Boston has picked up the campaign.
It was already illegal under state law to drive into an intersection when you can't get all the way across. But starting Thursday, Boston will be handing out tickets to motorists who clog intersections — even if they edged in while the light was green.
Brookline already has a few "Don't Block the Box" zones, like the one at Cypress Street and Brington Road in Brookline Village. Boston is getting similar ones, mostly around the Longwood Medical area and along Brookline's border with the city.
The city is targeting 18 intersections so far with signage and pavement markings. Most of them are in the Longwood Medical Area. They are listed below and shown on the map accompanying this post:
- Brookline Avenue and Francis Street
- Brookline Avenue and Deaconess Road/Jimmy Fund Way
- Brookline Avenue and Longwood Avenue
- Longwood Avenue and Binney Street
- Longwood Avenue and Blackfan Street
- Evans Way and Fenway/Louis Prang Street
- Huntington Avenue and Longwood Avenue
- Huntington Avenue and St. Albans Road/Mission Street
- Huntington Avenue and Fenwood Road
- Brigham Circle
- Huntington Avenue and Ruggles Street/Louis Prang Street
- Atlantic Avenue and Congress Street
- Atlantic Avenue and Seaport Boulevard
- Congress Street and Purchase Street
- Massachusetts Avenue and Albany Street
- Massachusetts Avenue and St. Botolph Street
- Boardman Street and Leyden Street
- Meridian Street and Monmouth Street
The city said it will add more intersections as needed.
Here is some of the text of the state law against blocking the box:
The driver of a motor vehicle shall not cross or enter an intersection, which it is unable to proceed through, without stopping and thereby blocking vehicles from travelling in a free direction. A green light is no defense to blocking the intersection. The driver must wait another cycle of the signal light, if necessary.
The crackdown is being done in partnership with MASCO, a non-profit that works for the interests of the Longwood Medical Area.