Wednesday, July 17, 2024

As a resident of North Cambridge and Neighborhood 9, I love what what’s going up in my neighborhood at New Street, Blanchard Road and Jefferson Park. Great public housing projects, great designs, great locations. But WinnDevelopment’s scheme to plant a 60-unit slab smack over Walden Square Road plus a second 35-unit building wedged between the existing nine-story 110-unit building and the rest of Walden Square’s units? Not so much. To be clear: We are talking about a slab-and-tunnel project over Walden Square Road that would destroy a dozen mature trees, tear up the main road and create a 250-foot tunnel under one of the two new buildings that would sit on pylons. Can anyone reading this show me one successful example of this type of residential – not commercial – design that is equal in scope and size to what Winn wants to put up?

When 626 people and counting sign a petition to put the kibosh on this plan for Walden Square Road and the petition lands on deaf ears, one has to wonder if Winn and the city are listening or they if are on automatic pilot, having already chosen to build at any cost and any size. Hopefully, the slab-and-tunnel scheme will be prohibitively expensive, allowing for better public housing projects to go up in my backyard.

And if Winn thinks that green-lighting affordable housing projects with 100-plus units in our fair city is an onerous process, try living at Walden Square Road in the coming years.

Federico Muchnik, Richdale Avenue, Cambridge