You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

Starts & Stops

Boston targets gridlock in Financial District

Traffic around South Station is a messy mix of pedestrians, cabs, and people running for trains, a reader reported.

Yoon S. Byun/Globe Staff

Traffic around South Station is a messy mix of pedestrians, cabs, and people running for trains, a reader reported.

Reader Mark Basiliere from the South Shore drives a car pool of friends to the Financial District, stopping mornings at the top of Boston’s Lincoln Street, parking in Fort Point Channel, and picking up in the evening opposite 245 Summer St., near South Station, which he says has become nightmarish.

“It is amazing to me that daily multiple cabs pull over right after they turn from Atlantic onto Summer Street to drop off and pick up passengers, blocking one full lane,” Basiliere wrote. “This causes the drivers going up Summer Street to merge into one lane, resulting in backups. Throw a truck trying to turn right onto Summer from Atlantic, and it becomes a cluster ‘bleep.’ ”

Continue reading below

It’s hairier in the afternoon, with train commuters running toward the station, cabs pulling over indiscriminately, and bike riders eschewing road rules — causing Summer-Atlantic gridlock that is exacerbated by what Basiliere says is a mismatched traffic light and walk signal at Surface and Summer streets, causing conflict between cars and pedestrians.

Good news. James Mansfield of the Boston Transportation Department says Basiliere’s mostly right. Part of Atlantic is reserved for taxis and part is marked no stopping/standing, patrolled routinely by city parking officers. Increasingly, cabs have been using the commercial vehicle parking along Summer as well, Mansfield said, which is technically allowed. But double-parking by taxis is becoming more common, and the city will increase enforcement, he said.

As for gridlock, blocking an intersection is illegal, subject to a $150 fine. The city reviewed the signals at that intersection and found the timing to be correct, though it is programmed for a “concurrent walk,” meaning it tells pedestrians to go while also allowing right turns — with motorists supposed to know that pedestrians have the right of way.

“To help mitigate the issues the writer has experienced, we have asked that our parking officers make additional sweeps of the area to move double and other illegally parked vehicles from the area,” he said.

Eric Moskowitz can be reached at emoskowitz@globe.com.
Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.