Malden’s legislative delegation and city leaders announced that the City of Malden was selected for the latest round of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) Shared Streets and Spaces grant program. As a response to the economic and community impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Shared Streets and Spaces quick-launch/quick-build grant program provides for cities and towns to quickly implement or expand improvements to sidewalks, curbs, streets, on-street parking spaces and off-street parking lots in support of public health, safe mobility, and renewed commerce in their communities.
The City of Malden will receive $211,714.80 to create a dedicated bus lane to Malden Station, closing gaps between bicycle lanes and providing spaces along downtown streets to support additional outdoor dining and commerce.
“As the pandemic forces communities to think differently about our shared spaces, especially in our downtown commercial districts, we need to keep prioritizing safety, accessibility and convenience for all,” said Senator Jason Lewis. “This grant will help Malden to create safe and accessible shared spaces that will benefits pedestrians, commuters and local merchants.”
“I am pleased to see that Malden has received these needed funds to help reinvent Exchange Street so businesses, pedestrians and visitors to the area will be able to enjoy a much-improved experience,” said Representative Paul Donato. “I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Malden Delegation on projects such as this that will benefit our community.”
“Expanding access to mass transit and enhancing the quality of the mass transit experience has been one of my top goals, reflecting the priorities of our community,” said Representative Kate Lipper-Garabedian. “I am pleased that Malden’s efforts will be enhanced through this grant with the creation of a dedicated bus lane and will advocate for continued improvements to the Malden Station infrastructure.”
“Updating transportation infrastructure to address the needs of commuters of all modalities and support small businesses is key to Malden’s future” said Representative Steven Ultrino. “These funds from MassDOT will make our roads safer for pedestrians, cyclists, bus riders, and drivers, while also giving Malden’s local businesses the space they need to continue serving our community during this difficult time. I’m proud to have advocated for this funding to support a strong future for all here in Malden.”
Stephen Winslow, Malden City Councillor at Large commented for the City: “On behalf of Mayor Christenson and my fellow Councillors, we thank MassDOT for this opportunity. Prior to COVID-19, Malden residents relied heavily on bus and subway service to travel to work and school, and many still do. Our streets simply cannot handle the traffic that would result if everyone who took transit in Malden gets in a car. These projects support more socially-distanced travel options for Maldonians as we live through and emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and will also serve to demonstrate actions we can use post COVID-19 to travel safely and efficiently. The parklet on Pleasant Street will expand dining options in our Downtown which has and will be a critical engine in Malden’s future.”
Successful Shared Streets and Spaces projects are designed to be implemented quickly, flexibly, at low cost, and without major roadway reconstruction. Grant recipients are also encouraged to consider how a successful project could eventually be made permanent.
Now that the City of Malden has been named a grant recipient, city officials and MassDOT will work together to advance the project.