What’s New in Ward 2: Neighborhood Updates, Meetings, and Events

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McGrath Highway Updates

Last week I attended the Mass DOT meeting on the McGrath Highway/McCarthy Boulevard Project
to review short and long-term changes. Why is this project is important to Ward 2? McGrath has long been a barrier dividing our city and communities. Short-term improvements will immediately address a myriad of issues related to pedestrian and bicycle travel, much needed changes that were previously impossible. These changes will also better connect Union Square to the Green Line extension stations. Speaking of which, a portion of Medford St. will be closed at various times this month and then again in September and October to prepare the Medford St. Bridge for Green Line traffic.

When the project is finished and the overpass is leveled we will realize a new vista for Union Square and the rest of the City. McGrath has long been an eyesore, after recent work it has been looking better, but it will look its best once the new roads are paved. Not only that, it will be replaced by an at-grade boulevard that will better meet our traffic needs.

Relieving Our Overused Parks

The Fields Task Force has been meeting to figure out how we can better use our athletic fields. The auxiliary field at Dilboy and Draw 7 Park near Assembly Square are great options for short-term relief of the many overburdened fields. We are looking into long-term solutions at Foss Park but there are many creative and space efficient solutions. Why not take advantage of new large developments? I can picture a green field atop the soon to be built Partners Healthcare building in Assembly Square where Somerville youth can go to run around and use for soccer practice, can’t you?

Race for the 34th District State Representative

I am supporting Christine Barber in the race to fill Carl Scortino’s seat as State Representative. Even though the 34th district only covers Wards 4 and 7, it is important that we have a strong delegation representing the needs of Somerville. I am convinced that Christine will do that. She is smart, committed and has her pulse on the City. Check out her website ChristineBarber.org to learn more about her campaign.

Community Input

It is crucial that Somerville and US2, the Union Square Master Developer craft an agreement that addresses the concerns of residents and businesses. Additionally, the first official Lincoln Park redesign meetings are quickly approaching and I want to be sure that the voices of Ward 2 residents are the strongest. Share you thoughts and vision of Union Square here and of Lincoln Park here and I’ll make sure your voice is heard throughout the development process of both projects.

Neighborhood Meetings and Events:

July 31 – 6pm, Public Safety Building, 220 Washington Street – To discuss road closure for Medford Street Bridge work as part of GLX
July 31 – 6-8pm, 81 Park Street – Meeting to explore repurposing the garage into a restaurant
July 31 – 7:30, 260/266 Beacon Street – Discussion on proposed developments at those locations
August 13 – 6pm, Public Safety Building, 220 Washington Street – Meeting to discuss development at 45 Adrian Street
August 13 – 7:30pm, Public Safety Building, 220 Washington Street – Meeting to discuss development at 73 Concord AveCheck out Union Square Neighbor’s symposium, The Space in Between: Art, Green Space and the Public Realm. Over the next three thursday’s community members will gather to conjure tangible ways to better use public space and preserve Union Square’s character.
July 24, July 31, August 7 – 7:30pm, 35 Prospect Street

Hope you’re enjoying your summer and hope to see you around the neighborhood.

Be sure to get engaged on my website and follow me on Twitter for up to date news on all the issues and events in Ward 2.

Until soon,
Maryann Heuston

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