Options

Driving in Boston - Any tips?

awkookawkook Registered User regular
So I live in Southern Maine with little to no city driving experience. I am going to have to drive from my house in Maine and park at the convention center. I am a little nervous to drive through Boston. Does anyone have any tips or pointers for driving in Boston? Thanks!

«1

Posts

  • Options
    DolarrahDolarrah New JerseyRegistered User regular
    Are you staying near the convention center? If so Park the car and forget you have it for the weekend. If your just coming for the day, there is no advice other then the first rule of Italian Driving. "What's Behind You Doesn't Matter".

  • Options
    Atlus ParkerAtlus Parker Registered User regular
    If you don't need your car during the convention itself just park at Alewife station and take the T in.

  • Options
    AzimuthAzimuth Registered User regular
    The T is problematic if you are staying late. I drove the last 2 years and parked. Getting to the BCEC doesn't require any driving on the small North End streets. Just know your turns ahead of time and get in the correct lanes for your turns.

  • Options
    septagonseptagon Registered User regular
    Be assertive. As Boston drivers we see Maine plates and are already angry about it but you can survive (hopefully) unscathed if you check your mirrors frequently, have a good gps, and take opportunities before someone else does.

    Also blinkers are a sign of weakness :P Good Luck!


    (the actual best advice in this thread, if you're staying at a hotel and truly don't want anything to do with Boston driving, is parking at the mbta lot at alewife)

  • Options
    Liz SLiz S Goomba Symphathizer MARegistered User regular
    If it's not sold put, you might consider the Downeaster train. That is, if you're fine with its schedule. GPS on your phone can help yoo.

  • Options
    awkookawkook Registered User regular
    Im only driving down Saturday, and the AMTrack is way too expensive. Would it be the same thing to park at Malden center and get on the T there? It's closer for me. And where would we get off the T to walk to the convention center? Would it be Broadway?

  • Options
    KnolandKnoland Hungry Hungry Hippo VermontRegistered User regular
    awkook wrote: »
    Im only driving down Saturday, and the AMTrack is way too expensive. Would it be the same thing to park at Malden center and get on the T there? It's closer for me. And where would we get off the T to walk to the convention center? Would it be Broadway?

    South Station would probably be easier.

    PAX EAST 2014: Ticket/Enforcing[x] Hotel [x] Travel [x]
  • Options
    septagonseptagon Registered User regular
    If you're just attending for Saturday and want to leave the same night I think you should just drive to the convention center. The T stops running way before after hour pax activities die down and you don't want to be "that guy" who has to say goodbye to everyone at ten thirty.

    Set your gps... Look at your mirrors. You'll probably live.

  • Options
    DolarrahDolarrah New JerseyRegistered User regular
    Malden ok, but you have to change trains, unlike alewife which is a straight shot. South Station better then Broadway if only because the neighborhood it better. Take Orange Line from Malden to Downtown Crossing and then Red Line to South Station. Walk to Pax is about 10-15 minutes at a normal/moderate pace. If your feeling lazy, take the SL2 (silver line) from South Station to World Trade Center. But you will probably wait longer for the SL2 then it will take you to walk.

  • Options
    poisonxpoisonx Registered User regular
    lots of traffic between 6am and 10am so be careful that's rush hour. Also Massachusetts is known for MASSHOLES and drivers will cut you off.

  • Options
    gamerman1227gamerman1227 Registered User regular
    Be hyper aware of your surroundings driving in Boston, if you are relying on your GPS to get you somewhere, you will need to have one person drive, and another navigate, because you will run into many situations where the GPS will, say, tell you to turn left, and you will have five different turns you can make that all go left, and you need to make sure you pick the correct one. Driving through Boston is the worst thing ever, the layout makes no sense at all, there's a ton of one way streets, streets with six different lanes where you have no clue which is the lane you want to be in until it's too late and you can't merge, etc.

  • Options
    FatherFather Registered User regular
    convention is right of the exit for South Station of I-93. its exit 18. Very easy from there, go to the end of the exit take a right, go to the end, take a left at the traffic light. Stay in the right lane, just as you pass south station take a right and you are there. Convention Center is 1/4 mile down a road. Follow the signs to park.

  • Options
    BloodSurgeBloodSurge Registered User new member
    Hold on.

  • Options
    CryptiksCryptiks Beardmaster Montreal, QcRegistered User regular
    Don't panic

  • Options
    AzimuthAzimuth Registered User regular
    Bring your towel.

  • Options
    TilionTilion Registered User regular
    Driving around the Convention Center isn't bad. Just know your route ahead of time.

    I live in NH and have driven down every year since PAX East started. As soon as you get there park your vehicle and then walk or take the T everywhere. As soon as you do it once you'll be good, it's just getting over the first time jitters.

  • Options
    bschorybschory Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    Avoid Downtown Boston at all costs. It's a maze of one way streets at the best, and at the worst those are filled with cabbies and drivers who are notorious for cutting you off or pulling out from parking right in front of you with no concern for safety. The rule of the road there seems to be "if you're behind me, make sure you don't hit me, I'm going to do whatever I want."

    Taking 93 or 90 to the Convention center will put you in a much better part of town for driving, and it's pretty easy to get to the convention center from either highway. Still watch out for cabs doing crazy things (they have a reputation for a reason) but you should be better off over there.

    The best advice in this thread is definitely "leave your car at the BCEC or Hotel and take the T if you're going in to town."

  • Options
    APacManAPacMan Philadelphia, PARegistered User regular
    edited March 2013
    *Edit* The Convention Center area is not as bad as the image here:
    NewYorkampBoston_zps275eb246.jpg
    Just review your route ahead of time, even if you have a gps. The english-accented voice may not be as specific as you'd like.

    APacMan on
    We've heard that a million monkeys at a million keyboards could produce the complete works of Shakespeare; now, thanks to the Internet, we know that is not true. -Robert Wilensky

    Twitter: @APacManSays
  • Options
    DolarrahDolarrah New JerseyRegistered User regular
    Map not a fair comparison, that is Mission hill/Roxbury, not the seaport which is pretty squared off by blocks.

  • Options
    cookiekrushcookiekrush Registered User regular
    I drive to Boston every weekend, so I'm used to it for the most part, but it's still rough sometimes depending on traffic and the time of day. Make sure you always double check your blind spot, cars will pop out of nowhere (or that's what it feels like), and when you turn on your blinker, move quickly.

    Saturday traffic will not be too bad. I'm betting you'll only hit some traffic when you get closer to PAX.

    If you're comfortable taking the subway, you can park at Malden and take the subway in. You just need to change lines once. But be mindful of when the trains stop running, otherwise cabs will be the only way back to your car.

    Even with GPS, when it tells you to turn, make sure you're in the right lane to turn and the right street. Many streets are one way, and there are turn only lanes as well.

    Pinny Pals - open to trading!
    Looking for Edith Finch Pin!
  • Options
    WolfieeWolfiee Web/Graphic Designer and Illustrator MARegistered User regular
    May the odds forever be in your favor...

    0CsmwYt.jpg
    Badges [ ] Hotel [ ] Complete Pixelist.net [x] Excitement [x]
  • Options
    awkookawkook Registered User regular
    bschory wrote: »
    Still watch out for cabs doing crazy things (they have a reputation for a reason)

    Yes they do have a reputation for a reason; I have a story!

    For the 2012 PAX East, we parked in Malden and had our friend (who is a taxi driver in boston) pick us up. He was crazy. He went SUPER fast down the roads, went down side streets with room for only one car so fast. He would never stop at red lights, always just keep slowly slowly creeping up. We had to take a right at the end of this road, and there was a straight lane and a turn right line. The turn right lane was FULL while the straight lane was empty. He decides to go through the straight lane and cut everyone off and turn right. I was so scared, but he knew what he was doing. He's been doing it for over 20 years.

    Im thinking of taking 93 in if I don't take the T.

  • Options
    TheSeffTheSeff South Boston, MARegistered User regular
    As far as parking in Fort Point/Seaport here's a quick rundown. All of these are within walking distance to the BCEC, and the prices reflect Saturday and Sunday. Friday is a business day and thus it will be MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE to park in the city unless you get into a lot before 8:30am with the commuters and get the daily commuter rate.
    • Parking at the BCEC is always an option, but it's the most expensive at around $20 for the day. There's overflow parking from this lot down by the Boston Design Center and a shuttle in between the two. If you set out to park at the BCEC and its full you'll be re-directed to this lot.
    • There's parking on Necco Street in a lot, on the weekends it's only $5 or $6 for the whole day unless they've changed it since the fall and it's run by Central Parking. Around here is referred to as the Gillette lot or the Channelside Lot. This lot is CASH ONLY unless, again, they've changed it since fall. This is where I park for PAX and restaurants like Papagayo will validate for this lot during the week so you pay less.
    • There's a garage by the Necco Street lot called the Necco Garage, I don't have any specifics about parking there.
    • There's a lot on Boston Wharf Rd. that takes credit and has a daily rate on the weekends. It's run by LAZ and I think its $10 or $11 on weekends.
    • There's a lot off East Service Road, it has a daily weekend rate of $10 or $11. I'm not sure if it's cash only or not.

    I am literally only registered on this forum for the PAX East PokeCrawl; Red Gold four years running. Feel free to ask questions regarding Boston Area bars, restaurants, attractions, etc around PAX East.
  • Options
    SchmulkiSchmulki Registered User regular
    tip: do it as little as possible

  • Options
    DolarrahDolarrah New JerseyRegistered User regular
    How to Drive in boston
    216ec_0880.jpg?c=094e

  • Options
    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    The biggest tip I can give to anyone that has to drive in Boston is this: be a little aggressive. It sounds cliche, but it's the truth. Most accidents in Boston are because someone is being too cautious. Don't put your blinker on too soon, because that's like flashing a cape at a bull: people take it as a challenge that you can get there before them and they are more than happy to accept that challenge. Instead, use your blinker just as your are changing lanes so it at least gives them a heads up.

    As for parking, my advice would be to use the Winthrop Square Parking Garage (240 Devonshire Street, off of Summer Street near Downtown Crossing). It's $10 for all day on the weekends and it's right around the corner from South Station, so you're talking a 10-15 minute walk to BCEC. And since it's a little hidden from the main parking areas, it's hardly ever full.

    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
  • Options
    AzimuthAzimuth Registered User regular
    And please, don't slam your brakes if the light turns yellow as you are entering the intersection. The person behind you is expecting you to go through, and will be right behind you.

  • Options
    bschorybschory Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    awkook wrote: »
    For the 2012 PAX East, we parked in Malden and had our friend (who is a taxi driver in boston) pick us up. He was crazy. He went SUPER fast down the roads, went down side streets with room for only one car so fast. He would never stop at red lights, always just keep slowly slowly creeping up. We had to take a right at the end of this road, and there was a straight lane and a turn right line. The turn right lane was FULL while the straight lane was empty. He decides to go through the straight lane and cut everyone off and turn right. I was so scared, but he knew what he was doing. He's been doing it for over 20 years.

    That is terrifyingly impressive. That takes a level of skill I wish I had, and a level of reckless abandon I hope I never attain.

  • Options
    bschorybschory Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    Le_Goat wrote: »
    The biggest tip I can give to anyone that has to drive in Boston is this: be a little aggressive. It sounds cliche, but it's the truth. Most accidents in Boston are because someone is being too cautious. Don't put your blinker on too soon, because that's like flashing a cape at a bull: people take it as a challenge that you can get there before them and they are more than happy to accept that challenge. Instead, use your blinker just as your are changing lanes so it at least gives them a heads up.

    Spot on. Intersections in the city are a battle of wills to be sure.

  • Options
    CoanCoan TorontoRegistered User regular
    Was checking this out to see if there was anything special I should know since it'll be my first time driving in. As a Toronto driver, just drive normal...got it.

    Posting on the phorum again like its 1999
  • Options
    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    @Coan Bruins vs. Leafs Saturday night. You watching it?

    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
  • Options
    CoanCoan TorontoRegistered User regular
    Le_Goat wrote: »
    @Coan Bruins vs. Leafs Saturday night. You watching it?

    No
    I'm sticking by my bitter stance of not giving the NHL the time of day after another lockout. Mind you, most Leafs fans are pretty clueless (and will support the team/league no matter what), JUST LIKE THEIR DRIVING!

    (annnnnnnd back on topic) ;)

    Posting on the phorum again like its 1999
  • Options
    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    edited March 2013
    Another little tid bit of information for those of you thinking on driving in and then taking the T: Check their website for service updates. Currently, only the Orange Line will be dealing with shuttle service after 9:00 pm on Sunday the 24th, after Sullivan Square. The T can already be frustrating, but adding service interruptions or re-routes just makes is 100% miserable.

    Le_Goat on
    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
  • Options
    erzhikerzhik Registered User regular
    Be aggressive as someone mentioned before and look out for cyclists. Those people are insane.

  • Options
    duckerducker MARegistered User regular
    Best piece of advice given already and can't be stressed enough --- don't. Driving in Boston (coming from a Bostonian) is a pain, and can be expensive. Find a lot and ditch your car there. Either just outside of Boston Proper and take the MBTA in, or in one of the lots around BCEC. Just make sure they allow overnight parking, and find out the cost up front.

    Good luck (I'm taking a train in... I'll pass on the driving/parking!)

  • Options
    the_fuzzy_penguinthe_fuzzy_penguin OhioRegistered User regular
    Good luck! I drove a group of us from Ohio in 2011 and aside from the 14.5 hour drive to begin with, Boston drivers and confusing roads had a lot to do with us taking the train this year! I feel like the multiple things that happened the first night are normal everyday occurrences looking at some other comments, so I'm definitely glad I don't have to drive in it again.

  • Options
    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    erzhik wrote: »
    Be aggressive as someone mentioned before and look out for cyclists. Those people are insane.
    The cyclists are becoming more of a problem lately. They have a complete disregard for road rules and go when/where they please, no matter if they have the right of way or not.

    If we could just have the Futurama tubes, everything would be so much better.

    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
  • Options
    JerYnkFanJerYnkFan Registered User regular
    You haven't lived until you get stuck in rush hour traffic on 93 in the middle of town.

  • Options
    CoanCoan TorontoRegistered User regular
    I've literally been passed by a house in Toronto traffic, I'm not sure I would consider any sort of rush hour living.

    Posting on the phorum again like its 1999
  • Options
    Le_GoatLe_Goat Frechified Goat Person BostonRegistered User regular
    Coan wrote: »
    I've literally been passed by a house in Toronto traffic, I'm not sure I would consider any sort of rush hour living.
    That's hilarious. All I can compare that to is Office Space where he gets passed by the geriatric lady on her walker.

    While I agree that being insensitive is an issue, so is being oversensitive.
Sign In or Register to comment.