There's a lot at stake in the City of Cambridge this week, with critical meetings taking place tonight, tomorrow night, and Wednesday afternoon. I invite you to join us at any and all of these important events.
Tonight, Monday, July 28, at 5:30 pm, the City Council will hold its annual midsummer meeting in a special location - the Henrietta S. Attles Meeting Room at CRLS, 459 Broadway.
I have placed two items on the agenda for tonight's meeting -- Policy Order #2, which asks the council to support residents who want to rebuild the Whittemore Ave. Community Garden in North Cambridge -- and Policy Order #4, which asks the council to help fund the preservation of the Silver Maple Forest.
You can read more about the Whittemore Ave. Community Garden on this Change.org page, and you can read more about the Silver Maple Forest here on my blog. Also, last night, the Fresh Pond Residents Alliance did this blog post in support of both policy orders.
Members of the public wishing to testify in support of either order should arrive at the Attles Meeting Room and add their names to the public comment list prior to 6 pm. Public comment starts at 5:30 pm, but the sign up list is closed promptly at six. People who are not able to attend may also express their opinions by emailing the entire city council: firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to copy the City Clerk at email@example.com to have your comments added to the record.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, July 29, the Planning Board will meet to decide the fate of the Sullivan Courthouse redevelopment. The meeting will be held in the East Cambridge neighborhood, at the Kennedy Longfellow School, 158 Spring Street.
Last month, the developers presented their latest proposal (for a 20-story office building) to members of the East Cambridge Planning Team - but the office tower design was once again met with strong disapproval from neighborhood residents who are concerned about traffic, wind, glare, noise, shadows, etc.
Meanwhile, I have filed a public records request in an effort to get the state to be transparent about the deal, and the Neighborhood Association of East Cambridge continues to advocate for the denial of the special permit application so that a more appropriate, community-based plan may be developed.
Finally, on Wednesday, July 30, at 4 pm, I will introduce the petition for City Council Project Review to the Ordinance Committee. This meeting will also be held in the Henrietta S. Attles Meeting Room at CRLS, 459 Broadway.
Since last month, over 400 residents have signed on to an online petition to enable the city council to provide oversight on large development projects for the duration of the Master Plan process, which is expected to run through 2016.
As it stands, many people are talking about ways to improve the process at the Planning Board. That's terrific, but how do we ensure that we're making the right decisions in the meantime? This proposal offers an immediate solution by providing the city council with a way to review Planning Board recommendations on an interim basis. You can read more about the proposal here on my blog.
We have set up an RSVP page for residents who wish to discuss the Carlone, et al. petition on Wednesday; I invite you to add your name to the RSVP list by visiting this page: http://www.denniscarlone.org/carlone_petition_ordinance_committee_hearing
Please don't hesitate to reach out should you have questions or concerns with any of these items.