Green Line extension update to be heard Wednesday
A public meeting on the Green Line Extension Project’s final environmental impact report is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday in the auditorium of Somerville High School, 81 Highland Ave., Somerville. The meeting is to discuss changes to the project and answer questions from the public, said Katherine Fichter, project manager.
In addition to moving the Lechmere station closer to the NorthPoint development, the project includes a one-stop spur to Union Square in Somerville and several stops in Medford, including to Brickbottom, Gilman Square, Lowell Street, Ball Square, College Avenue and finally to Route 16. Officially, all but the outermost stop are to be built by Dec. 31, 2014.
Four Cambridge residents and Bill Deignan, transportation manager for the city, have been named to the project’s Design Working Group, which is to help the state Department of Transportation and Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority with project planning, including issues concerning stations, vehicle storage and maintenance facility, and Community Path, Fichter said.
More than 100 people applied to represent their neighborhoods, “an outpouring of interest that exceeded even our most optimistic projections,” she said.
The Cambridge residents chosen, all from the Lechmere area, are Derek Lombard, Christopher Matthews, Jo Seidler and Betty Skandalis. The other 13 members of the group represent the state agencies, Somerville, Medford and Tufts University.
East Cambridge residents Mark Jaquith and Heather Hoffman appeared at the June 21 meeting of Cambridge’s city council to warn that the state’s plans to widen Monsignor O’Brien Highway — which they said were at odds with the expansion of public transportation — threatened hopes for a public market replacing a relocated Lechmere MBTA stop. With legal troubles leaving NorthPoint and the station in development limbo, a neighborhood group came up with comprehensive plans for the year-round, 30-stall public market; accompanying 12-story, flat-iron hotel; and a commercial building of up to four stories.
Just before a June 22 court decision seeming to end the NorthPoint standoff, the couple urged councillors to do what they could to keep the state’s emphasis on car traffic from disrupting a Lechmere marketplace.
The Boston Globe posted here about what Somerville and Medford residents hope to see at stops in those cities.
The final environmental impact report was posted June 15 on the project website and is available at libraries, city clerks’ offices and by request to Regan Checchio at (617) 357-5772 and [email protected]. A copy of the document is here. As of the Wednesday meeting, 15 days remain in the public comment period, with all comments officially due to the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act Office by July 23.
This post includes material from a press release.