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Why Are the Roads in Boston So Confusing?

This content has been reviewed by Jason D. Stone

Driving through and around Boston takes effort. Whether you’ve lived here for several years or are just visiting for a few days, you’re bound to find the city’s roadways confusing and deciphering the overall layout mind-boggling.

Boston is an old city, serving as an important location throughout early American history, and parts of the city’s layout have not been updated. The roads have developed organically over time, rather than being created with ease of travel and modern vehicles in mind.

This confusion often leads to motor vehicle accidents in the area, both minor and severe. If you find yourself involved in an accident in Boston, you’ll need legal advice from car accident attorneys who understand what’s going on regarding the confusing nature of Boston’s roadways.

Before heading out on the Boston roads, it might help to learn about why the roads in Boston are so confusing.

Lack of Common Grid Orientations

The rumor goes that Boston’s roads are the remnants of former cow paths in the area. While authorities dismiss this as an untruth, the roads wind in ways that resemble old cow paths. The roads are confusing because of their lack of north, south, east, and west orientation that forms many city roads in other parts of the country.

While some people blame poor city planning as the culprit, the real cause of today’s confusing roads in Boston is history. Founded in 1630, Boston soon bustled with commerce and residential neighborhoods. Roadways formed, accommodating natural hurdles such as forests, hills, and marshes and facilitating the shipping trade. Early Bostonians also took into account potential attacks and ways to keep them from occurring using natural obstacles.

These same roadways remained in place for centuries and became the modern roads of the city today. Of course, this means they do not fit in with the popular grid system used in most larger cities. As a result, instead of a layout of north, south, east, and west roadways and intersections, Boston seems scattered with many roads pointing northeast, northwest, southeast, and southwest instead.

Combination of Various Neighborhoods

Boston is a conglomeration of 23 different neighborhoods, all of which developed independently of one another. While the central downtown includes a few streets designed on the standard cardinal grid, suburban ones align differently, creating a confusing array of roadways for residents and visitors.

Like many European cities, Boston grew over the centuries, becoming the bustling modern city we know today. The early founders and residents who created the original streets had no way of knowing that Boston would eventually encompass suburban areas.

With no cohesive plan then (or now), the area continues to be a confusing maze of roads even the best of drivers can fail to navigate.

How Boston’s Confusing Roadways Lead to More Accidents

Coming from a city with a traditional grid system, it’s easy to see why out-of-town drivers get confused and distracted, leading to accidents. Residents also find themselves involved in crashes with visitors or due to high concentrations of traffic during peak hours and the illogical layout of the roads.

Several common types of car accidents occur in Boston.

●      Distracted driving

When drivers become confused by the roads, they resort to maps and checking directions on smartphones. Even with audio directions, drivers can still become distracted while trying to find their way. These can lead to single and multiple vehicle accidents with varying degrees of injury and property damage.

●      Rear-end collisions

Rear-end collisions are one of the more common accident types in and around the city. While trying to determine the roads to take to reach a destination, drivers often neglect to notice a slowed or stopped vehicle in front of them, leading to a collision.

●      Intersection crashes

Failing to notice a stop sign at an intersection or being too distracted to see a signal light can lead to serious accidents. Side impact, or T-bone car crashes, can be severe and even fatal in intersections.

From low-speed crashes to devastating head-on collisions, accidents on the streets in and around Boston can wreak havoc on you and your family. Financial hardships often occur due to mounting medical bills and lost wages, or even a loved one’s death.

Seek out experienced Boston car accident attorneys to review your case and get you the highest compensation available can help you get through the days ahead.

Contact Your Boston Car Accident Attorneys Today

The bustling city of Boston is a great place to live, work, and visit. Yet its roadways are confusing, and drivers often find themselves involved in fender benders or, worse, fatal car accidents.

If you or a loved one is involved in a car accident, contact our car accident attorneys at Jason Stone Injury Lawyers for legal advice and a thorough review of your case. We’ll fight for your rights and win you the compensation you deserve.

Free Case Consultation

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