Hyde, Monument Sq. redesigns resume this fall

The City’s long-delayed plans for major redesigns of Hyde and Monument Squares will resume this fall, according to the Boston Transportation Department (BTD).

The Centre and South Streets Streetscape and Transportation Action Plan aims to develop general guidelines for the look and feel of the Centre/South corridor, as well as fix some specific traffic trouble spots.

The general guidelines were wrapped up in 2009 and an early major item was already finished: adding bicycle lanes.

Still pending are plans to shrink the Hyde Square rotary at Centre and Perkins streets to create more green space, and various sidewalk improvements in Jackson Square.

Dueling plans for Monument Square, where Centre and South intersect, still need to be resolved. One plan would enlarge the traffic island containing the Soldier’s Monument, while the other would connect the island to the First Church in Jamaica Plain Unitarian Universalist property to create a new park.

Further planning has stalled since late 2010, most recently because BTD officials were focused on the Casey Arborway project in Forest Hills, according to Vineet Gupta, BTD’s director of policy and planning.

BTD now has a budget of $350,000 to $400,000 to hire consultants to complete the plan, Gupta said. A new public process to finish the designs should begin this fall and last into spring 2014, he said. Buildable designs should be done by late next year, he said. There is no actual construction budget at this time.

It is possible that for some quicker fixes to be identified in the public process and finished sooner, Gupta added, much like the bike lanes were done.

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