James Byrne’s comparison of the traffic flow resulting from a completed Casey Arborway to the current construction zone at one of the few Charles River crossings in Cambridge (“In Casey debate, remember that cars are people, too,” May 10) is disingenuous at best, part and parcel of an ongoing campaign of disinformation and fear-mongering at worst.
Believing that all the elements of city street life—cars, buses, trucks, bikes, pedestrians, strollers and wheelchairs—should be able to coexist on, well, a street in the city is far from the “madness” he claims. It’s the necessary challenge of all urban planning. The “hell” of the current street level described is partly caused by the Casey Overpass ramps and abutments. Three of the street-level impediments to traffic flow that existed when the Casey was built—the steel girders and cement piers of the elevated Orange Line, the massive, granite rail viaduct of the 1890s and the Green Line trolley way—no longer clog the streets or need “bridging.” And of course, the footprint of the crumbling bridge and ramps can be used to improve traffic patterns.
The “choice” demanded by Mr. Byrne was investigated, vetted, weighed against the alternatives and found to be unnecessary and an expensive burden on taxpayers.