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Monday, September 12, 2011

Community Path Workshop Hosted By MassDOT

MassDOT writes...

Dear Green Line Extension Friends –
We are pleased to announce an upcoming public workshop on the design of the extension of the Somerville Community Path. The workshop will be held on:

Thursday, September 22, 2011
Somerville High School - Cafeteria
81 Highland Avenue, Somerville

We invite you to join us to share your ideas and vision for the extension of the Somerville Community Path.
For language or access accommodations, please contact Beverley Johnson at (617) 296-7003 or

As always, if you have any questions on the Green Line Extension project, you can email Kate Fichter at

The Green Line Extension Project Team

For transportation news and updates visit MassDOT at our website:, blog:, or follow MassDOT on twitter at


John Cole said...

Is there a timeline for starting this thing or is it tied to the GLX? As I type this, it's being used as a parking lot for workers at MaxPac.

Anonymous said...

It's tied to the completion of the the MaxPac site; not the GLX.

Reason: Incoming and outgoing construction vehicles will be using---[by agreement with the city]-- the bike path extension to divert said trucks from using resident surface streets.

I'm sure the residents would prefer the workers not parking on their (resident) streets.

John Cole said...

The workers have been parking their private vehicles (and that's what I'm talking about) on site since this project started. Parking on the extension just started last week (on the Lowell St. end, anyway). Construction vehicles *are not* and have not been using the extension for access to this end of the site.

I hear the equipment, feel the vibrations and smell the diesel fumes 5 days a week. I'm disabled and cannot escape this mess. Please do not attempt to lecture me on this project and how it affects those of us who live in close proximity to it.

Anonymous said...

You asked a question and got an answer. LECTURE???

Anonymous said...

Why is the name "Green Line Extension" still being used? It's a misnomer.

The only reason MBTA did any work at all was because they got sued and a judge imposed a deadline.

Do you think that, now that they've broken that deadline, they are going to be any more committed? It will be the exact opposite. When 2018 rolls around and no work is started, they will delay it to 2025. When 2023 rolls around and no work is started, they will delay it to 2030. When 2030 rolls around, they will cancel the project, having successfully extinguished all optimism that the Green Line will ever been extended.

"Formerly Proposed Green Line Extension" is much more apt.

John Cole said...

Yes, lecture. I asked a question and got what I perceived to be a lecture on how the path extension was supposed to be used during construction after I had pointed out that it indeed was *not* being used that way. Also, I got this little tidbit:
"I'm sure the residents would prefer the workers not parking on their (resident) streets."

I'm sure you won't like the term "red herring", either, but that's what it is. Permit parking, remember?

Anonymous said...

In regard to "living in close proximity" to the ongoing construction at the MaxPac site; and all the associated noise,vehicles coming and going,vibrations, diesel fumes, etc., long time residents of "The Patch"---->[Warwick, Clyde, Murdock Streets] will remember when The International Paper Company and the Hires Root Beer Company occupied that site.

The named streets above and residents were "bombarded" by trucks coming and going night and day---box trucks, 18-wheelers, diesel trucks, etc., delivering materials and leaving with finished product.

In addition, The Paper Company,was serviced by a railroad siding, freight cars delivering raw materials and leaving with finished product night and day.
Not only impacting "The Patch" streets, but other surrounding streets and residents living on Princeton, Alpine, Lowell, Wilson, Hinckley, Henderson, Nashua Streets.

The "Paper Company" itself was running 24 hour shifts----with the heavy overhead conveyer equipment noise level disturbing sleep.

Then there was that huge brick chimney at the east end of the building that exuded "fumes/smoke" from their boilers---that forced people walking over the Lowell Street bridge to hold their breaths; and people at home to close their windows when the wind was blowing in their direction.

To say nothing about the 24/7 passenger trains on the north side rails of the site; and 24/7 freight trains on the south side rails-[no longer active-now the soon-to-be extended community path]- all engines fired by coal---all with their related noise and black smoke contaminating the air.

Any one currently living in the impacted area, with all the "temporary" construction "problems"---just be glad the site no longer houses what use to be there.

Old-time residents still there, will long remember what living there once was.

Anonymous said...

It wasn't a "lecture" it was a POI.
[point of information]

If not being used as agreed by the city file a complaint with the city powers-that-be, or your ward alderman.

Permit parking or not, those workers cars are not on resident streets.

If you object to them parking out of the way, on the extension, where would you suggest they do park; given, due to the current phase of construction, they cannot park on the site itself or on permitted strets?

Relax John---go with the flow---it's not a forever situation.

More residents other than yourself are being temporarily impacted.

The end result will be a far improvement over what was going on on that site years ago.


John Cole said...

Please don't interpret my comments regarding the current state of MaxPac as some sort of "longing for the good old days". That couldn't be further from the truth. I got here in the mid-80s and recall clearly the trains running behind our house on Princeton St. Nobody wants a return to that or, worse, what preceded it.

John Cole said...

You're clearly missing my point on this parking/use of the path thing. We have been told that certain things were going to be a certain way on this project, too much of which has not turned out to be true. This is just another example of it.

To my point, townhouses and condos? No, it will be apartments rather than condos (and if you don't think that changes the entire landscape of the project, having renters as opposed to owners, you're kidding yourself). A Rapid Transit Community? Not without the GLX. Just wait until you see the full impact on traffic no GLX will have on Lowell, Cedar, Warwick, Clyde and Murdock Streets. Probably Alpine and Princeton, as well.

You can add to the mix having to wait 7 years for the State to rebuild the Lowell St bridge (not unlike Cedar St.) only to see the State turn around and *give* KSS $490K to cut a hole in the side of it. I find that to be absolutely maddening.

You could say I have an axe to grind and you would be correct. And, though I'm highly unlikely to "go with the flow", I'm also not delusional enough to think that anything I have to say about this project will affect it in any way. That doesn't mean I have to like what I see, though.

BTW, for the record, it's not my job to figure out the parking arrangements for this project. :-)

Anonymous said...

If you are living on Princeton Street, yet you "complain" about the construction trucks not living up to using the unfinished section of the community path to enter and egress the construction site. How in heaven do you know or see that not happening what with all the trees and vegetation blocking one's view from Princeton?

And particularly, if you live on the south side of Princeton with houses fronting you on the north side.

Or, putting it another way, how do you see said trucks using the streets off of Cedar--in "violation" entering and leaving the site?

John Cole said...

I don't know why I'm responding to this....

At no time did I mention construction vehicles being in "violation" of ANYthing. I remarked about PRIVATE vehicles being on the path.

I can see the site quite well, especially the Lowell St end and the path.

I live on the north side of Princeton with the back of my house facing the site not 75 feet from the path, itself. So close, in fact, that the large maples and oak trees drop their leaves in my yard. Why on earth am I telling you this?

Take from my comments what you will. If you think I'm just sitting here making this all up, then fine. Enjoy.

Mostly, I'm just posting to try to get Courtney to laugh. She's heard me go off an a tangent about this project in person and I'm pretty sure she finds it somewhat entertaining.

Anonymous said...

Agreed, about renters vs.owners at the complex....but, there will some condo owners residing at the site. The site will not be 100% renters....albeit, initially all units were to be condos.
Regrettably, that changed, bringing forth deserved concerns from the adjoining resident neighborhood----and others!

But maybe, just maybe----
Given the "closeness" of both renters and owners within the complex, we can hopefully assure the owners, having vested BIG $$$$ in the site, will "police/monitor/protect" themselves, their property, and their $$$ investment when and if renters cause problems.....calling Somerville Police if push comes to shove.

As for increased traffic once the entire complex is completed--of course there will be.

Somewhat mitigated, according to the experts, by the interior complex design allowing a portion of traffic to enter and leave only via streets to Cedar----and the side closer to Lowell to enter and leave only via lowell.

Somehow the neighborhood survived when ALL the trucks, semi's, employee cars, resident's vehicles,laundry trucks, entered and left via the small streets to Cedar when the entire tract area, 5+ acres, was manufacturing.

About John saying he made no mention of "construction vehicles not being in "violation" of ANYthing."

He wrote in his 2nd post..."Construction vehicles "are not" and have not been using the extension for access to this end of the site."

I read that to mean those vehicles WERE in "violation" of not using the agreed upon extension to the site. That leaves coming and going via the near accessible resident streets was done! By agreement.. a No-No!
BTW---there are signs at the Cedar Street end of the extension path directing trucks and rolling heavy equipment to enter there to gain access to the work site.

Anonymous said...

John wrote......."it's not my job to figure out parking arrangements for this project." [with a smiley]

Absolutely correct John!

It WAS "figured out" by someone in charge---allowing the workers to park, well out of harm's way, at the east end of the path extension, once it was no longer feasible for the workers to park on-site.
But it appears you were not happy with that decision, in spite of your "smiley" tag.

Anonymous said...

As John admitted...he does have an axe to grind against the building and use of this site as modified from the original plan. Can't fault him for that. Lots of other people do too.

However, probably the lesser of "evils" due to the area having been zoned for commercial use.

Who can remember the obnoxious plastics plant that followed the box company with its ugly silos facing the residents of Princeton Street and seen from Lowell Street. The liquiid leaking plastic drippings as the liquid was being off-loaded from railroad tank cars into their silos. The refuse and outgrowth vegetation left on their outside property completely ignored by the owners. What an eyesore to behold from the Lowell Street Bridge----plus an inherent danger to kids who ventured on to their property.

Other not too bright citizens who dumped tires, appliances, mattresses, etc. from the bridge onto their property---never to be removed.

So, another manufacturing plant?
Or, residential housing?