Thursday, October 04, 2018

More Destruction in Planning on the Charles River, Phase 3.

More Destruction in Planning on the Charles River, Phase 3.


The state has announced planing in preparation for further destruction on the Charles River.  The next outrage would destroy another hundred trees or so and directly impact the Charles River White Geese.

Announcement was made in conjunction with a meeting on traffic problems on the BU Bridge, starting at the Destroyed Nesting Area of the Charles River White Geese.  The responsible government agency, the Department of Transportation has corrected comparable problems on the Boston side, but cannot do the correcting on the Cambridge side because that is the jurisdiction of the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

These environment destroyers at DCR want to do phase 3 destruction on the banks of the Charles and are not interested in practical and responsible minimization of pollution through cleaning up correctable traffic nightmares.  They prefer to ramp up pollution through tree destruction with the usual Heartless Animal Abuse.

Here is my letter to the Cambridge City Council, City Manager and MassDOT chief on the matter.  City Manager received his copy on October 3.  MassDOT copy was mailed on that date.  City Council is taking next Monday off, so that will be received on October 15.  They may be celebrating a holiday on the 8th, perhaps Indigenous People’s Day (Columbus Day elsewhere in the USA).

RE: Charles River:  MORE DCR DESTRUCTION IN PLANNING, Traffic Nightmare in Cambridge,

1. General.
2. More DCR Destruction Plans.
3. BU Bridge Traffic Nightmare.
4. Photo Analysis
5. Current Outrage Near Implementation.
6. Recommendation for Responsible Behavior.

Gentlemen / Ladies:

1. General.

On September 26, 2018, there was a meeting in Cambridgeport to discuss the nightmare at the BU Bridge Rotary.  Present were the Mass. Department of Transportation (MassDOT), Cambridge Development Department, and the Mass. Department of Conservation and Recreation. (DCR)  The discussions revealed more outrageous DCR Destruction Plans.

Those problems and plans are discussed here, plus THE ONLY RESPONSIBLE way to solve the traffic problems and the ACCELERATING ENVIRONMENTAL OUTRAGES.

2. More DCR Destruction Plans.

Here are photos and plans showing the new destruction currently planned by the DCR.

Planning time table  is a year and a half.    Physical work would then take 2 ½ years.

Community discussion at the meeting communicated exactly ZERO support for the DCR destruction, plus very major pleasure with MassDOT’s proven competence in Boston.
Our resolution: Get rid of the DCR, with  its  demonstrated fetish for environmental destruction, and proven incompetence.

Replace the DCR with the proven professionalism and achievement of MassDOT.

Let’s get something positive done.

[Photo labels marked with asterisks]

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Plans for the January 2016 outrage included destruction of this thick woods.  This destruction is almost certainly part of DCR Phase 3 Charles River Destruction.  The small white figures are part of the Charles River White Geese.

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This magnificent tree was slated to be destroyed in the January 2016 outrage, but it was NOT DESTROYED THEN.  It is almost certain to be destroyed in the DCR Stage 3 Charles River destruction.

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The Charles River White Geese have been  loved by tourists and commuters, and praised for their public attraction by the Boston Globe.  They were subject of admiring DCR street signs UNTIL Cambridge’s court condemned City Manager initiated destruction plans on the Charles River.  Now, they are attacked by DCR in pretty much all construction anywhere near them.  They are certain to be devastated by construction IN THEIR GHETTO as part of DCR Phase 3 Charles River destruction.

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These are the destruction plans which WERE NOT implemented in the January 2016 outrage.  They are almost certainly being implemented in the third phase of destruction.  The Grand Junction Railroad is the lines running up and to the right from the bottom middle.

The area to the right, The Wild Area shows EXACTLY ONE TREE NOT DESTROYED.  The photo on page 1 shows the excellent woods doomed.  Another 100 being destroyed?  Travel of trucks through the Destroyed Nesting Area is obvious.  Tree 541, yet another excellent tree doomed, is shown 2 photos back.

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3. BU Bridge Traffic Nightmare.

A large number of residents at the meeting were highly displeased at the mess created in Cambridge during Red Sox games which rather clearly stems from the narrowing of traffic lanes on the BU Bridge from a total of 4 in both directions to a total of 3 traffic lanes to add bike lanes.  Only one lane now leaves Cambridge.

Traffic backs up to Magazine Street on Granite.  The Granite - Brookline - Waverly intersection is notable for blatant lawlessness with predictable gridlock.  Photo analysis in section 4, below.

The DCR’s solution was an announcement that they are planning to extend the nightmare of January 2016 east from the BU Boat House.  They stated that planning will take an additional year and a half with construction to take two and a half years thereafter.

Somehow, according to the DCR, more environmental outrage would solve the BU Bridge problem.  Their record in the next area of destruction is presented in section 2, above.  The following reports would be helpful to understand Phases 1 and 2 of what is now apparently to be three stages of destruction.

A. The outrage inflicted in January 2016, as reported in my video is presented at:  The City Manager panned in the video is the predecessor to the current City Manager.


B. My TWO detailed letters to the Cambridge City Council presenting the massive destruction of mostly excellent trees at Magazine Beach supported by nine members at Magazine Beach and posted at    Detailed photos are included of the Magazine Beach trees.

This letter only documents 54 of the 56 trees being destroyed.  April 24, 2017 order 1 gave the DCR a blank check with which the DCR destroyed an additional two street trees lovingly cared for by the MicroCenter Shopping Center.  Their HEALTHY stumps still remain, surrounded by loving mulch.  I promptly reported to the Cambridge City Council on the outrage being exacerbated.

According to the DCR, further environmental outrages would ameliorate the traffic nightmare inflicted on Cambridge by the reduction of lanes on the BU Bridge.

The residents had a more sane response.  They complimented the roadway improvements on the Boston side which address the same reduction of traffic lanes coming from Boston to the Boston end of the BU Bridge from two to one.

MassDOT stated it did that work but that MassDOT could not do such work in Cambridge because the DCR controls the BU Bridge rotary under Memorial Drive.

The residential indignation is very valid, and it once again shows the very great difference in competence between MassDOT and DCR.  This is yet another reason to get rid of the DCR in favor of MassDOT to take advantage of the vast difference in competence and responsibility between the two entities.

Police are added on the Boston side to respond to Red Sox games.  It would be minimally sensible, in addition to getting competent rearrangement and police management, if needed, at the BU Bridge Rotary, to get obviously needed police coverage in the roadways controlled by the City of Cambridge.

As stated below, I would defer to MassDOT as to whether police could be of value on the rotary itself.

4. Photo Analysis

Here is an MIT photo cropped and marked up to show the situation.  Markings are as follows:

[ed: Cambridge is at the top.  The river is the Charles River.  The bridge starting in the lower left corner and moving up is the BU Bridge.  The Bridge starting there and moving to the right is the Grand Junction Railroad bridge.]

I.      The Granite - Waverly - Brookline intersection is slightly above the photo at this point.
II. The latest area being studied by the DCR for destruction.  NOTICE ALL THE DOOMED
III. BU Bridge Rotary.

The problem is the narrowing of traffic from Cambridge to the BU Bridge to one lane as a result of the BU Bridge work.

On the Boston side [ed: barely visible at bottom left], MassDOT created a feeder lane arrangement guiding traffic into the corresponding one lane area on the Boston end.  That sort of responsible planning is not possible in Cambridge because the DCR is fixated on environmental destruction in the name of “planning.”

5. Current DCR and Cambridge City Council Outrage Nearing Implementation.

In Section 2, above, are the remaining DCR plans from the 2016 outrage.  The Cambridge City Council in order 1 of April 24, 2017, supported destruction at Magazine Beach supposedly because of doomed and dying trees.  I debunked that nonsense in my letter of June 6, 2017, which has been presented to the City Council twice.  It is recorded at

The only outstanding explanation by the Cambridge City Council for the Cambridge City Council’s destructiveness seems to be that the woman who is leading the fight for destruction is their “kind of activist.”

The Cambridge City Council’s “kind of activist” brags of fighting for this destruction for eight years now.  BUT SHE NEVER MENTIONS, INSOFAR AS POSSIBLE, the 56 mostly excellent trees she and the Cambridge City Council are fighting to destroy.  One letter showing her nonsensical arguments was published in the Cambridge Chronicle.  The letter fits constant loud praise of this work combined with suppression of mention of the massive tree destruction.  At the same time, she claims to be an expert defending Magazine Beach.  The combination leaves the inescapable impression that the City Council’s “kind of activist” is deliberately deceiving the voters.

It is our opinion that responsible behavior on the Charles River by the Cambridge City Council should end the spiraling outrages on the Charles River.

6. Recommendation for Responsible Behavior.

First of all, and as fast as possible, the DCR should be replaced in Cambridge by a responsible and constructive agency.  The obvious choice is MassDOT.  The City Council should end the expanding outrage at Magazine Beach.

Secondly, traffic enforcement is needed in response to the nightmare created by the BU Bridge rearrangement.

Cambridge Police should be managing the Granite Street - Waverly - Brookline Street intersection during Red Sox home games to end the rampant lawlessness and the associated gridlock at that intersection.

MassDOT, upon replacing the DCR, should evaluate the situation at the BU Bridge rotary, and, in light of its excellent record on the Boston side, end the problem.

MassDOT activities should include police enforcement to the extent it could be of value, and physical roadway rearrangement west and north (most definitely not east) of the BU Bridge such as would be of value to physically alleviate the problem.

Changes, as necessary, should be coordinated with the Cambridge Development Department, the Cambridge City Council, and the Cambridge Police Department.