Safety on Brookline Street

Dear Families and Guardians,

For the past year the Memorial-Spaulding School Council and members of the PTO have been working closely with our Safety Officer, Dawn Fleming, City of Newton Traffic Council and the Board of Alderman to look at options we can try in order to make drop off and pick up safer for students, staff and families. The City is planning to initiate a traffic trial starting next week. The main concept of the trial is to test an option, which would narrow a portion of Brookline Street, to create a barrier that will separate buses from moving traffic. This will mean that passing vehicles will no longer be required to come to a stop when school buses are picking up and dropping off students.

We expect that the trial will be set up and will be in place next week, no later than Thursday morning, but perhaps by Wednesday morning. We will request a police presence during key times along with message boards that will warn drivers of the new traffic conditions. The Newton DPW will be placing sandbags on Brookline Street that will be used to define the “curbed island” separation from Brookline Street traffic and the bus lane. We anticipate that vehicles will hit some of the sandbags and sand will spill into the street.

Please know that trials never work as well as permanent construction, but the purpose of this trial is to try to gather information in terms of how traffic conditions may change should a decision be made to make permanent changes to the road. The trial will last a few days, and then will be deconstructed. Should the trial be successful, the next step would be to present the design to the Board of Aldermen for review and approval.