Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Charles River Conductivity Study rejects Destructive Targets.

1. Introductory.
2. The Charles River Connectivity Preliminary Report.

1. Introductory.

Last weekend, I took a number of photos of the Charles River White Geese and of the area on the South Side of the Charles River where Harvard is aiming to have the state build an off ramp from the Massachusetts Turnpike to Cambridge by connecting to and widening the railroad bridge which runs under the BU Bridge.

Those photos are posted at

Since then, I have been trying to put together a proper presentation of the balance of the photos.

My research has uncovered a state report concerning the Charles River Connectivity study. This is a study which was / is being conducted by a joint group made up of the state Department of Transportation and Department of Conservation and Recreation.

I previously reported on early meetings in this project which occurred in late 2011. I followed up on those meetings in an attempt to obtain the formal report. I have now found the formal report and am evaluating it.

That report, however, is of great value in understanding the situation and crucial planning on the Charles River. It benefits strongly from the inclusion of a responsible agency, the Department of Transportation which has clearly forced an irresponsible agency, the Department of Conservation and Recreation to participate in responsible planning.

The 2011 meeting I attended condemned outrages stemming from the City of Cambridge and its controlled groups, outrages at least on one of which the DCR on its own has aided. The terms used clearly indicated disgust at irresponsible initiatives from Cambridge.

The DCR has encouraged the “underpasses” proposal for the three bridges west of the BU Bridge as part of the DCR’s long standing destructive proposal for destruction of hundreds of trees between Magazine Beach and the Longfellow Bridge (four bridges, including the BU Bridge, east of Magazine Beach).

Outrages fought for by fake groups with bad connections have been sneaked into the Governor’s request for bond authorization, House Bill H3332. That bill specifically refers to funds for the DCR for “Historic Parkways”, the DCR’s euphemism for all that tree destruction. That destruction almost certainly, now, includes a destructive underpass under the BU Bridge as well.

Using a key lie, the falsely named Charles River Conservancy has obtained "approvals” all over the place for the “underpasses”. The key lie is that the $4 million for the “underpasses” is connected to $24 million for the “historic parkways”. And they do not mention the massive destruction which is part of the $24 million they are bootstrapping.

And the Department of Transportion, the responsible agency for the "underpasses" themselves, rejects the “underpasses” as outrageous wastes of money which are environmentally destructive.

Governor Patrick's bill is deliberately and horribly vague.

These “underpasses” were described by the staff in the Charles River Connectivity meeting I attended as Cambridge nuttiness. While problems with connectivity in the area of the supposed proposal have been noted, I do not see any proposal for underpasses in the report.

Similarly, the destructive bike activists have been conned into fighting for the off ramp from I 90 planning by being lied to. They are being told they are fighting for a bike highway. The 2011 meetings included a bit of a snort type of a response by the state planners on the idea of a bike highway crossing the railroad bridge (the con) and connecting to bike highways on the Boston side. The concept was rejected as impossible.

Basically, the destructive bike activists are being used as a stalking horse. The railroad underpass under Memorial Drive to the east of the Destroyed Nesting Area needs to be widened so that the railroad underpass will hold the two lane I90 off ramp plus one railroad track. The bike activists are being told by the City of Cambridge that the widening proposal is for them.

Responsible behavior would be to connect the bike highway to Memorial Drive by taking a narrow strip between Vassar Street, the next street to the east, where it bends and connecting Vassar Street to the railroad and the proposed bike highway.

The Cambridge bad guys are very clearly fighting for the responsible route via Vassar Street and lying to the destructive folks that the part of the bike highway “proposal” between that point and the Boston side of the Charles River is for them.

I have previously posted detailed photos showing the con game and the reasonable proposal.

2. The Charles River Connectivity Preliminary Report.

According to the falsely named Charles River “Conservancy”, now funded with help from the Boston Globe, the Charles River Connectivity report was up for comments through January 17, 2014.

Here are the on line links to the report for your information.

I would strongly appreciate separate analyses, especially analyses for publication, to

Slides for Charles River Connectivity Report meetings, October 12 to 18, 2011:

Cover and Executive Summary:

Part 1, Background and analysis:

Report, Sections A-B:

Report, sections C-D:

Report, sections E-F:

Report sections G-H:

Report Summary:
Implementation Project Tables: