Sunday, October 28, 2012

Relationship to the Charles River of Cambridge, MA, USA Machine’s Attack on Central Square, Cambridge

A few days ago, I posted an analysis of The Cambridge Machine shafting its “friends” in a zoning petition affecting the neighborhood north and east of Central Square, Cambridge, at

My letter to the Cambridge Chronicle places this nonsense with regard to Machine attacks on the Charles River in Cambridge in a more concise package.


Cambridge Chronicle

Ms. Yanow’s attempt to withdraw the Yanow petition could be the worst thing she could do for her cause. Her stated reason, respect for the process being imposed on Central and Kendall Squares makes things that much worse.

I have written more successful zoning petitions than anybody else not employed by the City of Cambridge.

The difference between my results and that of processes supported by The Machine can be seen in two relatively new buildings, each with the same relative size (FAR) on its lot.

The City Council, in passing my Natalie Ward petition forced the Inn at Harvard on Harvard in place of construction 72% larger wished by Harvard.. We followed the process dictated by state law.

The new Harvard building on Memorial Drive near Western Avenue was the result of a “process” created by friends of The Machine. The City’s related zoning petition was so irresponsible that not even Harvard could accept it. Harvard’s less irresponsible petition created the final result.

The Inn at Harvard, forced on Harvard by the Natalie Ward petition, is the most popular new building in Harvard Square. Harvard’s new building on Memorial Drive has same relative density on its lot (FAR). The Memorial Drive building has been generally panned.

This is the difference between The Machine and responsible behavior.

Withdrawing her petition is exactly the worst thing Ms. Yanow could do. The proper procedure is to allow it to die out of inaction.

The difference? Ms. Yanow’s withdrawal prohibits discussing the topics of her petition for two years. Dying from inaction allows further work to be done on the Yanow petition.

Withdrawal would protect city councilors who oppose the petition from going on record opposing the petition and what it stands for. The Machine tends to do a lot of protecting of city councilors.

Ms. Yanow’s praise for the process is distressingly similar to the con game done in Riverside which resulted in that inferior Harvard building.

We are told a process is the thing. The Machine’s process has no mandatory basis in law. We also saw a lot of process on the Harvard building on Memorial Drive. The Memorial Drive process was made up on the fly, as is the current nonsense.

But The Machine goes on, and another neighborhood certainly looks like it has had inflicted totally unnecessary harm. And The Machine and these silly processes keep praising themselves.