“State transportation officials are likely to get an earful at an open house Wednesday meant to explain what’s happening with the green line extension, as residents and officials don’t like what they already know. At Monday’s meeting of the City Council, residents and officials rallied behind an order by councillor E. Denise Simmons to rework plans for a Union Square stop, where the design will make it harder to board for riders coming from Cambridge or for people with disabilities or mobility issues.
Councillors called the situation “deplorable” and raised the prospect of a lawsuit.”
The price of the future Green Line through Somerville is a lot of annoying construction. In a couple of weeks that begins in earnest with the first major bridge closing. Here’s the schedule:
Broadway bridge at Ball Square: March 22, 2019 – March 2020
Washington Stunderpass in East Somerville: April 2019 – Fall 2019 and also Spring 2020 – Fall 2020
Medford St bridge at Gilman Square: July 2019 – Spring 2020
School St bridge: End of 2019 – Fall 2020
Cedar St bridge: Early 2020
Lowell St bridge: Summer 2020
The closures of the Broadway and Medford Street bridges are necessary in order to accommodate the construction of new Green Line light-rail tracks. Currently, these bridges are only wide enough to accommodate the existing commuter rail service that operates beneath them. The Washington St. bridge requires a complete reconstruction of abutments and structural span in order to accommodate the addition of new light-rail transit service and the Community Path.
The City presented plans for its Winter Hill in Motion project, which will include a dedicated bus/bike lane, bus stop consolidation, signal timing changes, and new pavement marking and signs. View the slides from the meeting.
MBTA Deputy Program Manager of Stakeholder Engagement Terry McCarthy acknowledged that they heard plenty of questions from Somervillians, especially about landscaping and planting. He said the project team is still negotiating how to effectively communicate with residents.
“We’ve been working on the project for about a year,” he said, “And it’s a design-build project, so in the working group we talked about how to present where we are.”
“A first-of-its-kind study led by Tufts University researchers, in collaboration with Somerville officials and citizens, will measure indoor air quality and comfort in multifamily housing developments near busy roadways. The study will develop recommendations for the design and operation of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to create a protective indoor environment that restricts residents’ exposure to transportation-related air pollution.”