Why Is This Important?


Coming Events

The goal of these pages is to support transit-oriented, sustainable development in Somerville. Related issues include transportation, development, tax base, land use, open space, environment, and public health. See the following for more information:

This is a work in progress, updated weekly. Please report new events, sources, background information, and (especially) factual errors to webmaster at whyisthisimportant.net for inclusion in next week's version.

Coming Events, July 27 - August 2, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership Meeting

Mon. July 27, 7 PM

Community Room
Visiting Nurses Association
259 Lowell St.
Somerville MA (map)

The monthly meeting of STEP provides an opportunity for citizens to get informed and involved in transportation developments around Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Orange Line T-Stop at Assembly Square
  • Green Line Extension to Union Square
  • Green Line Extension through Somerville to Medford
See Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership (STEP)

 

Urban Ring Citizens Advisory Committee Meeting

Tues. July 28, 4 PM

State Transportation Building
Conf Rms 2-3
10 Park Plaza
Boston MA (map)

Notice of Project Change
(LARGE PDF)

This meeting of the Urban Ring CAC provides citizens an opportunity to discuss the Urban Ring Phase 2 Notice of Project Change, which modifies the Urban Ring plan to bypass Assembly Square with the main loop, providing only a spur with bus service. The last day for written testimony is Aug. 7, 2009. Matters of interest:

  • Integration of Assembly Square into Urban Ring
  • Access of Somerville to Urban Ring service.

See: The Urban Ring

 

Inner Belt / Brickbottom T-Stop Community Corridor Planning Meeting

Wed. July 29, 6 PM

Holiday Inn
30 Washington St.
Somerville MA (map)

List of Meetings (PDF)

This important event is sponsored by the Somerville Community Corporation as an opportunity for citizens to have input into the Green Line Extension to Somerville and Medford. Matters of interest:
  • Status of Green Line Extension to Brickbottom
  • Implications for economic development
  • Implications for environmental improvement.

See:

Somerville Housing and Land Use Joint Committee Meeting

Wed. July 29, 7 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

Agenda (MS DOC)

This is a joint meeting of the Housing and Community Development and Land Use Committees. On the agenda is to continue work on a new comprehensive plan for the City of Somerville. Issues of interest:

  • Mixed-use development at Assembly Square
  • Mixed-use development at Inner Belt / Brickbottom.
  • Planning development around the Green Line Extension into Somerville.

See: Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Planning and Zoning.

Somerville Traffic Commission Meeting

Thurs. July 30, 5 PM

Tufts Admin. Building (TAB)
167 Holland St.
Somerville MA (map)

Report of Parking Solutions Task Force, June 2009 (PDF)

This is a regular meeting of the Traffic Commission. Note time change. Matters of interest:

  • Expanding residents' only parking to all of Somerville.
  • Increasing metered parking rates to $1/hr.
  • Adding "second shift" permits.
  • Parking in new developments.

See:

Red Line / Blue Line Connector Working Group Meeting

Thurs. July 30, 4 PM

West End Branch Library
151 Cambridge St.
Boston MA (map)

This is public meeting of a working group on extending the Blue Line to connect to the Red Line at Charles Street. Matters of interest:

  • Improved access to the North Shore from Somerville
  • Effect on funding for Assembly Square Orange Line T-Stop and Green Line Extension.

See: Executive Office of Transportation

Citizen Scientist Training Workshop

Sat. Aug 1 PM - 4 PM

Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH)
143 Border St.
East Boston MA (map)

This workshop sponsored by the Mystic River Watershed Association (MyRWA) is intended to train volunteers to join MyRWA's water quality monitoring program. This important program keeps tabs on the Mystic year round regardless of weather.

See: MyRWA Water Quality Monitoring

   


Coming Events, August 3 - August 9, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Transportation and Infrastructure Trends in Somerville

Tues. Aug. 4, 6:30 PM

Tufts Admin. Building (TAB)
167 Holland St.
Somerville MA (map)

Somerville Comprehensive Plan 2010-2030

This important meeting, sponsored by the City of Somerville, provides an opportunity for citizens to learn about and give their views on the transportation options in Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Orange Line T-Stop at Assembly Square
  • Green Line Extension to Union Square
  • Green Line Extension through Somerville to Medford

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Transportation and Infrastructure

Special Meeting, Somerville Board of Aldermen

Tues. Aug. 4 6:30 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This special meeting of the Board of Aldermen is being held to discuss economic proposals for the Assembly Square development project, and other financial issues. Matter of interest:

  • Funding for Assembly Line T-Stop.
  • Urban design and site plan for 10 M s.f. Long Term Vision for Assembly Square
  • Implications for transit-oriented mixed use development.

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Transportation and Infrastructure

Public Hearing: Proposed Amendments to Massachusetts Ambient Air Quality Standards

Tues. Aug. 4 10 AM

MA Department of Environmental Protection
2nd Fl. Atlantic Conf. Rm.
One Winter St.
Boston MA (map)

Public Notice
Proposed Amendments to Air Quality Standards

This important hearing is to discuss amending the state ambient air quality standards to align them with the national standards for lead, ozone, and fine particles. The comment deadline August 18, 2009. Matters of interest:

  • Ozone and fine particle levels near sources such as busy highways
  • Definition of fine particle versus ultrafine particles.
  • Health effects of ozone and fine particles.

See: Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection

Gilman Square T-Stop Community Corridor Planning Meeting

Wed. Aug. 5, 6 PM

Community Room
Pearl Street Park
238 Pearl St.
Somerville MA (map)

List of Meetings (PDF)

This important event is sponsored by the Somerville Community Corporation as an opportunity for citizens to have input into the Green Line Extension to Somerville and Medford. Matters of interest:
  • Status of Green Line Extension to Gilman Square
  • Implications for economic development
  • Implications for environmental improvement.

See:

Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting

Wed. Aug. 5 , 6:00 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This is the regular meeting of the Somerville Zoning Board of Appeals. Issues to monitor are:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Union Square Development
  • Somerville Avenue Development

See Somerville Zoning Board of Appeals.

Planning Board Meeting

Thurs. Aug. 6, 6:00 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This is the regular meeting of the Somerville Planning Board. Issues to monitor are:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Union Square Development
  • Somerville Avenue Development

See Somerville Planning Board.

End of Comment Period
Urban Ring Phase 2
Notice of Project Change
EEA #12565

End of comment period:
Aug. 7, 2009

Notice of Project Change
(large PDF)

The Executive Office of Transportation has filed a Notice of Project Change that modifies the Urban Ring plan to bypass Assembly Square with the main loop, providing only a spur with bus service. The last day for written testimony is Aug. 7, 2009. Matters of interest:

  • Integration of Assembly Square into Urban Ring
  • Access of Somerville to Urban Ring service.

See: The Urban Ring

   


Coming Events, August 10 - August 16, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes

MBTA Fare Increases & Service Cuts: Somerville Workshop

Thurs. Aug. 13, 5:30 PM

Auditorium
Somerville High School
81 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This is one of a series of public workshops on the coming MBTA fare increases and service cuts. Matters of interest:

  • Effect on Somerville service
  • Effect on Assembly Square T-Stop and Green Line Extension
  • Written comment period through Sept. 4, 2009.

See: About the MBTA

   


Coming Events, August 17 - August 23, 2009
Meeting Information Notes
Somerville Bicycle Committee Meeting

Tues. Aug. 18, 7:00 PM

Basement Floor Conf. Room
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This is the regular meeting of the Somerville Bicycle Committee. Issues to monitor are:
  • Bicycle path past the IKEA in Assembly Square.
  • Extending the Community Path from Cedar Street toward Boston along the railroad right-of-way.

See Somerville Bicycle Committee.

Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting

Wed. Aug. 19 , 6:00 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

This is the regular meeting of the Somerville Zoning Board of Appeals. Issues to monitor are:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Union Square Development
  • Somerville Avenue Development

See Somerville Zoning Board of Appeals.

Somerville Planning Board and Land Use Committee Joint Meeting

Thurs. Aug. 20 , 6:00 PM

Aldermanic Chamber
Somerville City Hall
93 Highland Ave.
Somerville MA (map)

Agenda (MS DOC)
MBTA Maintenance Facility Proposed Zoning (PDF)

This is a joint meeting of the Housing and Community Development and Land Use Committees. On the agenda is to discuss amending three industrial zones in the Somerville Zoning Ordinance to allow for an MBTA Maintenance Facility at Inner Belt / Brickbottom.

  • Mixed-use development at Assembly Square
  • Mixed-use development at Inner Belt / Brickbottom.
  • Planning development around the Green Line Extension into Somerville.

See:

Somerville Traffic Commission Meeting

Thurs. Aug. 20, 6 PM

Tufts Admin. Building (TAB)
167 Holland St.
Somerville MA (map)

Report of Parking Solutions Task Force, June 2009 (PDF)

This is the regular meeting of the Traffic Commission. Matters of interest:

  • Expanding residents' only parking to all of Somerville.
  • Increasing metered parking rates to $1/hr.
  • Adding "second shift" permits.
  • Parking in new developments.

See:

   


Coming Events, August 24 - August 30, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Housing Trends in Somerville

Tue. Aug. 25, 6:30 PM

Tufts Admin. Building (TAB)
167 Holland St.
Somerville MA (map)

Somerville Comprehensive Plan 2010-2030

This important meeting, sponsored by the City of Somerville, provides an opportunity for citizens to learn about and give their views on housing issues in Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Health issues along I-93 and McGrath from VOCs.
  • Health issues along diesel commuter rail lines from VOCs.

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Housing Programs and Services .

MBTA Fare Increases & Service Cuts: Public Hearing

Thurs. Aug. 27, 5:30 PM

State Transportation Building
10 Park Plaza
Boston MA (map)

This is the final public hearing following a series of public workshops on the coming MBTA fare increases and service cuts. Matters of interest:

  • Effect on Somerville service
  • Effect on Assembly Square T-Stop and Green Line Extension
  • Written comment period through Sept. 4, 2009.

See: About the MBTA

   


Coming Events, August 31 - Sep. 6, 2009
Meeting Information Notes
   


Coming Events, Sep. 7 - Sep. 13, 2009
Meeting Information Notes
   


Coming Events, Sep. 14 - Sep. 20, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Land Use Trends in Somerville

Mon. Sep. 14, 6:30 PM

Cafeteria
Capuano Early Childhood Center
150 Glen St.
Somerville MA (map)

Somerville Comprehensive Plan 2010-2030

This important meeting, sponsored by the City of Somerville, provides an opportunity for citizens to learn about and give their views on land use in Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Union Square Development
  • Somerville Avenue Development

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Planning and Zoning.

   


Coming Events, Sep. 21 - Sep. 27, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Housing Trends in Somerville

Tue. Sep. 22, 6:30 PM

Cafeteria
Capuano Early Childhood Center
150 Glen St.
Somerville MA (map)

Somerville Comprehensive Plan 2010-2030

This important meeting, sponsored by the City of Somerville, provides an opportunity for citizens to learn about and give their views on housing issues in Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Health issues along I-93 and McGrath from VOCs.
  • Health issues along diesel commuter rail lines from VOCs.

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Housing Programs and Services .

   


Coming Events, Sep. 28 - Oct. 4, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes
Land Use Trends in Somerville

Mon. Sep. 28, 6:30 PM

Tufts Admin. Building (TAB)
167 Holland St.
Somerville MA (map)

Somerville Comprehensive Plan 2010-2030

This important meeting, sponsored by the City of Somerville, provides an opportunity for citizens to learn about and give their views on land use in Somerville. Matters of interest:
  • Assembly Square Development
  • Boynton Yards/Brickbottom Development
  • Union Square Development
  • Somerville Avenue Development

See Somerville Strategic Planning Office: Planning and Zoning.

7th Annual Middlesex Canal Historic Ride

Sat., Oct 3, 9 AM

Sullivan Square T-Stop

This bicycle ride starts at the Sullivan Square T-Stop and follows the route of the old Middlesex Canal 38 miles to Lowell, with sightseeing along the way. Matters of interest:

  • History of Massachusetts transportation
  • Good health and companionship.

See Liveable Streets

 

   


Coming Events, Oct. 5 - Oct. 11, 2009
Meeting Information Notes
   


Coming Events, Oct. 12 - Oct. 18, 2009
Meeting
Information
Notes

2009 Tour de Somerville

Sat. Oct. 17, 10 AM

Seven Hills Park
Davis Square
Somerville MA (map)

This bicycle tour will visit all seven of Somerville's hills. Matters of interest:

  • Overview of bicycling in Somerville.
  • Good health and companionship.

See SomervilleBikes.org.

   


Coming Events, Oct. 19 - Oct. 25, 2009
Meeting Information Notes
   


27-Jul-2009