Changes to Coolidge Square Get Recommendation of Council Subcommittee

A Town Council subcommittee recommended some significant changes to Mt. Auburn Street, including a redesign of one of the main intersections in Coolidge Square. 

Tuesday night, the Public Works Committee discussed the proposed changes to Mt. Auburn Street, east of School Street. The most significant change is the realignment of the intersection of Bigelow Avenue with Mt. Auburn Street, which also turns Kimball Road into a one-way street away from Mt.

OP-ED: Republicans Can Send a Strong Message for Change by Leaving Governor Blank on Ballot

The Ugly History of the MA-GOP:
It’s time Republicans and Republican leaning voters send a clear message to the MA-GOP. For decades we’ve tolerated mediocre Republican Governors, telling ourselves: “that’s the best we can do in Massachusetts.” Sure, we’re not likely to elect someone like Scott Walker or Mike Pence to the corner office on Beacon Hill anytime soon. But we can certainly do better than the likes of Bill Weld and his boy wonder Charlie Baker, who not only are as far left on a plethora of issues as Bernie Sanders, but they have become notorious for undermining  Republicans, from mayoral contenders right up to presidential nominees. The policies of these feckless RINOs (Republicans in Name Only) are bad enough.

New Health Director Getting to Know Watertown, Sees Current Concerns, Others Down the Road

Watertown’s new director of health comes to town with more than 40 years of experience in public health. After arriving two months ago, he said he believes Watertown has a commitment to public health, and hopes the department can move from one that is reactive to a proactive one. 

Larry Ramdin comes to Watertown after 11 years as the Health Agent in the Salem. Before that the Arlington resident worked in Reading and Newton. He was drawn to the position in Watertown. “This is a wonderful opportunity,” Ramdin said.

Officials Hopeful Bus Priority Program Will Improve Commute on Mt. Auburn Street

It takes something special to get state and local officials to gather next to a bus stop at 8 a.m. a chilly morning, but celebrating the start of a program to speed up buses along Mt. Auburn Street rose to that occasion Friday morning. The group in front of Star Market showed up for the launch of the Cambridge-Watertown Mt. Auburn Street Bus Priority Pilot, also referred to as bus rapid transit or BRT. Users of the roadway may have noticed the red lanes, and new traffic patterns, which are designed to move buses, and — they hope — other vehicles, toward Harvard Square at a brisker pace.

Several Hundred Watertown Voters Cast Ballots Early, Still Time Left to Do So

The Watertown Town Clerk’s office has seen brisk business this week, mostly from people coming to vote early in the State Election. 

As of 9:45 a.m. Friday, 646 people had filled out their ballots at Town Hall, said Town Clerk John Flynn. He estimates there could be 2,000 votes by the end of the early voting on Friday, Nov. 2, 2018. Quite a few, but not compared to the last early voting period. “We had 6,449 total early votes in 2016,” Flynn said.

Plan to Redesign Mt. Auburn St., Common St. Area Creates Parking But Not In Front of Stores

A plan to redesign the Mt. Auburn Street/Common Street intersection would create 10 more parking spaces in that area, but some businesses in that area would lose the parking spots in front of their stores. The Town Council’s Public Works subcommittee heard a presentation from WorldTech Engineering, the firm designing the Mt. Auburn Street reconstruction project. Designers presented three options for the business area just east of Watertown Square based on where MBTA bus stops would be located.

Council to Look at Ways to Increase the Number Trees Along Watertown’s Streets

Having trees on your street can reduce the heat in the summer, prevent flooding when it rains and can even increase property values. However, a study of street trees done by Watertown High School students found that many residents have few or no trees along their blocks. Monday night, the results of a survey of more than 3,400 street trees around Watertown were presented to a joint meeting of the Town Council’s Public Works and Rules & Ordinances subcommittees. The group made a recommendation to the full Town Council to seek ways to use the data to bring trees to streets that lack them. The data was presented by two members of Trees for Watertown, a citizens group committed to planting and maintain trees in town.

East End Councilor Calls for Changes to Help Filippello Park Neighbors

Neighbors of streets near Filippello Park have complained of parking problems and other issues related to users of the East Watertown park, and their Town Councilor is seeking some solutions. 

At meetings held in May, July and September, residents aired their concerns, much of which involved parking. District A Town Councilor Angeline Kounelis wrote an open letter to the Town Administration suggesting some steps to help residents of streets just south of the park — Clarendon and Berkeley streets — and the area of Arlington Street near Filippello Park. “Lack of parking for Park Users has been the harrowing cry that can be heard at every meeting; from every resident,” Kounelis wrote in her letter. “The responses from the Team have been courteous, but without substance. Is anyone listening to the residents, or simply following a scripted agenda for the use of Filippello Park?”