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City Probes Safety on Congested Intersection

By Courtney A. Coursey

Pedestrians and bicyclists may encounter fewer hazards as they cross the intersection of John F.Kennedy Street and Memorial Drive if Councillor Katherine Triantafillou has her way.

The Cambridge City Council on Monday passed a measure sponsored by Triantafillou urging City Manager Robert W. Healy to explore ways of making the heavily-trafficked intersection safer for pedestrians, "now that the warmer weather is approaching."

"A lot of people who go to Harvard have probably had near-death experiences at that corner," Triantafillou said.

since Memorial Drive is administered by the Metropolitan District Commission (MDC), a state agency, Cambridge cannot take action on its own, Triantafillou said.

The measure requires Healy to contact the MDC and then to conduct a traffic study of the intersection.

Triantafillou said she would like for Harvard to use some of its "political pressure" to facilitate the process since, she said, it is "enormously difficult to move the MDC to do anything."

Triantafillou said she hoped that the MDC and the CIty Council would look at ways to improve the timing of traffic signals at the intersection.

She said that the measure passed was "consistent with traffic-calming measures throughout the city."

The council also passed a measure at its Monday night meeting recognizing Loh-Sze Y. Leung '97 her actions during can evangelical mission trip over spring break, which resulted in the apprehension of three suspected kidnappers and the return of two Michigan sisters to their parents after a four-day, nationwide search.

"Frequently we pass resolutions thanking people for their contributions to making the world a better place," Triantafillou said.

The measured formally made the city council go on record in "commending Loh-Sze Leung for here keen observation and her alertness to the missing children and her willingness to get involved and take action."

Leung's actions were the subject of reports on national news outlets, and The Boston Globe recently profiled her.

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