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Fichter, Kate

Posted by Kate Fichter, Green Line Extension Project Manager

Thank you to everyone who has participated so far in the Station Design Workshop process. The Workshops are an excellent way for you to participate in the design of the future Green Line Extension stations, and an excellent way for the Green Line Extension team to hear directly from the public.

Please continue to participate in the upcoming Workshops:

June 9th from 6PM – 8PM: Ball Square Station
Somerville High School Cafeteria, 81 Highland Avenue, Somerville

June 13th from 6PM – 8PM: Lowell Street Station
Somerville High School Cafeteria, 81 Highland Avenue, Somerville

June 15th from 6PM – 8PM: Gilman Square Station
Somerville High School Cafeteria, 81 Highland Avenue, Somerville

June 22nd from 6PM – 8PM: Union Square Station
Cummings Elementary School, 42 Prescott Street, Somerville

June 23rd from 6PM – 8PM: Washington Street Station
Holiday Inn, 30 Washington Street, Somerville

June 29th from 6PM – 8PM: Lechmere Station
Kennedy/Longfellow School, 158 Spring Street, Cambridge
All Workshop locations are accessible by MBTA bus service (see www.mbta.com for more information). For language or access accommodations, please contact Beverley Johnson at (617) 296-7003 or bjohnson@bevcoassociates.comcastbiz.net.

It is also our pleasure to provide you with the following thoughts from MassDOT Secretary Jeff Mullan on the proposed extension of the Green Line to Mystic Valley Parkway and the proposed extension of the Somerville Community Path:

Mullan-2011

By Jeff Mullan, MassDOT Secretary & Chief Executive Officer

“Over the last few days, I have received your calls and e-mails advocating for MassDOT to include both the portion of the Green Line Extension to Mystic Valley Parkway and the extension of the Somerville Community Path in the Regional Transportation Plan currently being considered by the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization. I have also spoken personally with some of you, but the volume does not permit me time to respond to each e-mail individually. Out of respect for all of you and knowing how strongly you believe in both projects, I offer this response.

Certainly, both projects merit our attention. They both have advantages and fit squarely with much of the policy we have advocated since MassDOT was created and which we have embodied in our GreenDOT policy and in our overall transportation policy more generally. As I have stated many times publicly and privately, the Green Line Extension is at or near the very top of our priorities. The extension of the Community Path offers multiple benefits, including the obvious advantage offered by economies of scale if it were to be built at the same time as the Green Line Extension. As you all know, we have committed to moving the design of the Community Path forward at this time.

However, the Regional Transportation Plan is, by federal law, a fiscally-constrained document. The list of worthy projects going out many years in every region of the Commonwealth greatly outstrips our available funding. Despite good progress on transportation reform, which has saved us well over $100 million in our first year alone, we are still unable to commit to fund the construction of many worthy projects. Working with the other members of the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization, we have decided to protect existing projects while not adding any additional projects to the Regional Transportation Plan. Thus, the extension of the Green Line from College Avenue to Mystic Valley Parkway remains programmed in the 2016-2020 timeframe, while funding for the extension of the Community Path has not been included.

We will continue to work with our federal and state elected officials, many of whom are great advocates for transportation, on solutions to this issue, and will continue to advance both projects as we are today. We cannot at this time, however, commit to you that we have the necessary financial resources to build the Community Path and therefore cannot responsibly add it to an already over-burdened Regional Transportation Plan.

Thank you for your continued advocacy and support of our projects.”

As always, if you have any questions on the Green Line Extension project, you can email Kate Fichter at katherine.fichter@state.ma.us.

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