For Immediate Release
November 07, 2012
Parks and Recreation
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Mayor Thomas M. Menino has announced improvements to pathways in three downtown Emerald Necklace parks. Contractors have begun working on highly-traveled pedestrian areas on Boston Common, the Public Garden, and Commonwealth Avenue Mall.
The capital construction work is being done on pathways in the greatest decline. In some cases, entire swaths of pathways will be repaired and in others asphalt is being “spot treated” to address the worst of the tripping hazards and issues of puddling following heavy rain. The pathways will be repaired with minimal disturbance to the existing vegetation as the tree canopy is vital to the health of the parks as well as important for the enjoyment of park users.
In most cases, contractors will mill the top layer of asphalt to provide an even surface. Where the pathways have declined to the point where the sub-base needs repair - less than 5% of the entire project - contractors will repair the sub-base as well and only where needed, again to limit the disturbance to the root systems of the tree canopy.
As Mayor Menino encourages departments to look for ways to increase or maintain levels of sustainability, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department will use the $900,000 capital project to ensure that these properties continue to have the ability to capture storm water and infiltrate onsite. In the case of Boston Common, where the park has experienced puddling issues during storms on McArthur Mall, an infiltration basin will be installed beneath the pathway that will allow the storm water to slowly be released into the ground while providing a relatively puddle-free pedestrian thoroughfare.
The public will notice construction fencing in place where the work is underway. In addition, some statues will be covered when contractors are working nearby. Pedestrians may also see plywood covering artworks including the “Make Way for Ducklings” statues.
Pathway improvement work began in October. Since the project is weather dependent, some pathway improvements may not be fully completed until the spring of 2013. Residents and visitors with questions regarding the project should call (617) 635-PARK  or email firstname.lastname@example.org.