The following letter is from Jane Arnold of Pawtucket, R.I., a former Arlington resident.

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I lived on Acton Street from 1980 to 2005. I commuted daily down Mass. Ave. by bike or bus; I also went to Arlington Center and Arlington Heights by foot or bike. I quickly learned that the light at Appleton/Mass. Ave. junction was useless, particularly after I saw a car heading east on Mass. Ave. run head-on into a bicyclist going west and turning onto Appleton. (The bicyclist survived.)

My daughter grew up on Acton Street. One night, my husband and I were waiting to meet her bus from Cambridge. She got off the bus, pressed the light, waved to us across the street and then knew she had to check traffic before setting foot in the street. It was fortunate she did, or the car barreling east through the red light might have killed her. (I’m delighted to say a police officer pulled the car over half a block down the road.)

I have a suggestion for that intersection, as it appears business takes precedence over the lives of anyone not in a car. Install a full traffic light (red, green, yellow) at the intersection. Have separate greens for Mass. Ave., Appleton Street and Appleton Place, and an exclusive walk light.

Install a camera on the light and record anyone going over 25 mph or running a red light. Fine them $100. It’s astonishing how well this works in Providence. People proceed at 20 mph through school zones now and stop for red lights.


This letter was published Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021.