Monday, August 27, 2018

Charles River: Magazine Beach last Saturday.

Charles River:  Magazine Beach last Saturday.

1. Background.
A. General.
B. Doomed Grove overhanging Magazine Beach playing fields.
2. Phil Reports
3. Phil’s Supplemental Report.
4. Summary.

1. Background.

A. General.

Here is my marked up cropping of the best Massachusetts Department of Transportation photo of I90 and Magazine Beach, particularly the playing fields.

The markings are as follows:

I. The principal poison drainage area (swale) installed by Cambridge and the DCR to drain off poisons introduced into the previously clean Magazine Beach playing fields in the 2000's.

II. The boat dock of the Twentieth Century which was rendered useless in the 2000's by a bridge which prevented use by being incapable of handling vehicles with boats to get to the boat dock.  The “improvements” continue to prevent access while making it more difficult for the Charles River White Geese to get to their food for most of the last 37 years at the Magazine Beach playing fields.

III. The other swale.

IV. The grove mentioned by Phil which just saw destruction of the two furthest trees from the playing fields.

V. The magnificent Willow which is also among the 56 mostly excellent trees the Cambridge City Council and the Mass. Dept. of Cons & Rec (DCR) want to destroy.

B. Doomed Grove overhanging Magazine Beach playing fields.

Several days ago, I noticed two trees with the dreaded orange marking of planned destruction  in the doomed grove (IV above) which overhangs the western end of the Magazine Beach playing fields.  The doomed trees were the furthest trees in the grove going west from the playing fields.

The attached photo is from June 2017.  The playing fields are to the right.  The two most doomed trees were to the far left.

I reported the marking to Phil.

He observed the situation several times.

He reported  as follows concerning his view on Saturday, April 25.

2. Phil Reports

I took an early AM walk to MB today. The marked dead or  dying (one was exuding sap) trunks have been removed from the grove. The  reddish brown  color of the heartwood confirms my thought that they are Eastern  Cottonwoods, not poplars as the DCR [Department of Conservation and Recreation] inventory describes them.

[Phil reports on the eastern of the two poison drainage ditches (I above), which he accurately refers to as “swales”.  The swale he refers to is the swale whose vegetation has now been repeatedly attacked by the Cambridge City Council’s Specified Absolute Dictator on the Charles River.  Here is a photo after the first destruction.  In the above photo, this swale is item I.]

Speaking of incompetence, the sodden fields have suffered heavy damage  from recent grass cutting.  There are deep gouges in the turf in a number of areas where it was shredded by the mower. The swale is deeply underwater, still. I would think the missing reeds (which are growing back vigorously) must have respired tons of water vapor inn’to the atmosphere each week. It was hardly ever wet underfoot in  their area. I  suppose I am one of the few people aware of this as [word lost] have  prowled through  them looking for little creatures’ habitats.

I recently got a copy of the very interesting book The  Secret Life of Trees, which documents among other things how trees create microclimates with the large amounts of water vapor and oxygen they  exhale every day. I had in mind the three giant old oaks cut down this  month next to my dad’s house.  One of the neighbors who is otherwise a nice fellow is happy they're gone because he didn’t like raking their leaves that blew into his yard!  People amaze my sometimes and not in a positive way. But certainly the effusive growth of reeds similarly  impacted its area.

The dock construction appears to be moving slowly. The gravel they put  down to fill in the swampy area to the right of the footbridge is now largely under water too.

[Here is Phil’s photo of the boat dock work toward the end of July.  This is point II in the area photo above.  The bridge which has blocked and will continue to block access to the dock is the diagonal light brown area.  I am working on a detailed analysis of the latest outrage.

[The SECRET plans which Phil found on the Internet call for creation of a 3 foot wall at the water line, yet another tactic in ramping up the continuing heartless starvation of the Charles River White Geese.]

3. Phil’s Supplemental Report.

[I asked him what he meant by the oozing of the sap.]

The oozing of sap meant the one tree was still alive, however weak it appeared externally. I imagine they removed these because of the liability situation, should one be stressed by the coming hurricane season winds and fall on some passer by.

4. Summary.

I will get into the nonsense of the boat dock, hopefully, quickly.  It is a major writing task.

The sap issue clearly communicates that the DCR, contrary to the nonsense in their plans, as analyzed by me in my June 6, 2017, analysis of those plans, is stating that this is the end of the “dead or dying” trees.  Thus, there is no question that future destruction, perhaps imminent, will be undisputedly as wanton as the destruction of hundreds of trees east of the BU Bridge in January 2106.

My analysis of the DCR plans to the Cambridge City Council is posted at  Note in particular the threatened magnificent grove.  Phil has always said that some of these need to be pruned.  The story from the DCR has been the usual, confuse the concerned folks as much as possible.  They have been all over the place as to how many they are going to destroy.  I do not think they ever got down to 2.

As part of the usual nonsense, they put out nonsense that these 10 trees were 3, and that silly count was reflected in their supposed destruction count.

My video on the accomplished destruction is posted at

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Charles River Destroyer now consulting on I90 Rebuild Project impacting the Charles

Charles River Destroyer now consulting on I90 Rebuild Project impacting the Charles

1. Introduction.

Our reports have included a great deal of detail about the planned rebuild of Interstate 90 (Massachusetts Turnpike) in Boston on the south side of the Charles River from Magazine Beach.

This project is being conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) which owns the highways and the bridges abutting the Charles River, including I90.  The parklands are owned by the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR.)

MassDOT has a new consultant added to the team which has been assisting MassDOT in the planning for this project.

People who fought for outrages already achieved on the Cambridge side of the Charles are fighting for many changes which would damage in Cambridge and for a change WHICH WOULD DESTROY ABOUT HALF A MILE OF CHARLES RIVER RIVERFRONT in the project area.

The new member of the consulting team LED the predecessor of the DCR, the Metropolitan District Commission when the MDC created the terrible plans which have now been implemented by the DCR.

Here is a state created satellite photo showing the relationship between I90 and the Magazine Beach playing fields.

The Magazine Beach Recreation Area WHICH UNDER IMMINENT THREAT OF OUTRAGEOUS DESTRUCTION includes the playing fields and extends way up that side of the Charles River as far as the green trees can be seen.

I90 is on the left.  This highway area is the area which is the current focus of the I90 planning study, as near as I can gather.  This latest study is based on orders of the Massachusetts Environmental Secretary.

The principal part of the area in the I90 planning is much larger area than the area in the picture.  It is to the left of the curve on the left.  That area is not relevant to the current study.

In the area of study, running between the two bends on the Boston side is an area which would be destroyed by one of the alternatives under consideration.  People who supported the accomplished outrages on the Cambridge side support the destruction of those trees and the riverbank on which they stand.

And the guy who approved the destruction of hundreds of trees on the Cambridge side is now a consultant on the I90 project.

To the right of and not showing in the photo is the BU Bridge and the Destroyed Nesting Area, the ghetto which is all that is left of the formerly mile long habitat of the Charles River White Geese, which, in turn, was centered on the BU Bridge.

To the right (east) of this photo, including the DNA, is the area which was the target of the destruction of hundreds of excellent trees by the entity which currently owns the parkland on the Cambridge side of the Charles, the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Here is MassDOT’s overall map of the area:

The area at the bottom left is part of the area shown in the satellite photo.  The BU Bridge can be seen crossing the river.

January 2016 destruction of hundreds of trees, APPROVED BY THE NEW CONSULTANT, ran on the upper (Cambridge) side of the Charles River almost from the BU Bridge, crossing the Charles at the bottom left, past the Mass. Ave. Bridge (officially the “Harvard Bridge”) and almost to the Longfellow Bridge, the next bridge up.

The Destroyed Nesting Area of the Charles River White Geese is on the Cambridge side of the river, to the right of the BU bridge and under Memorial Drive which follows the river.

We have recorded the destruction of the hundreds of excellent trees destroyed in January 2016 in our video posted at

The  Cambridge City Council and the DCR are currently working to destroy 56 more excellent trees starting at the playing fields and running west, plus other destruction.  This is the next stage of the destruction approved by the new consultant.  Our analysis of those plans with photos is posted at

Here is an on the ground photo showing only part (to the right) of the area which could be destroyed should the I90 changes be implemented.

It is our opinion that the Department of Conservation and Recreation and its predecessor are / were unfit to manage the environment, especially the environment of the Charles River.

The new consultant who led the meeting of the advisory committee discussing changes to the area in the above pictures APPROVED THE DESTRUCTION ALREADY ACHIEVED.   I certainly do not think less unfavorably of him than I do of his destructive, incompetent agency..

2. Formal Objection.

[We have XXXX'd out one individual's name.  While his name has significance to the addressees of the letter, this blog has been viewed in more than 100 countries, and the identity of this person is of no relevance to such a broadly read publication.  The reference is so peripheral, it is not of value herein.]

A. Body of objection.

The following letter is being sent by me, individually and on behalf of Friends of the White Geese to the state environmental secretary, the state secretary of MassDOT, the Cambridge City Manager, and the Cambridge City Council objecting to the presence of this person as a consultant on the I90 study.

* * *

Gentlemen / Ladies:
On August 15, 2018, representing Friends of the White Geese, I attended a presentation to the I90 Advisory Committee primarily by a consultant from, I presume, Howard/Stein-Hudson Associates, Inc.  I have attended as many meetings of this committee as I have been aware of and have been able to attend.  I have repeatedly asked that I receive notification of the meetings.  In spite of the repeated requests, I have received no such notification.

You will recall that the most important change to date in the plans for the I90 rebuild were based on our recommendations, the creation of a direct connection from the main project area to Soldiers Field Road inbound east of the hotel complex.  In spite of this, and in direct violation of my request, I do not believe I have ever received notification of any meeting of the advisory committee.

Additionally, I have a dramatic record of achievements in the City of Cambridge.  I have previously provided you with an abbreviated communication of my record.  It is attached again so that there is no confusion.  When I previously provided the secretaries this document, it was printed back to back.  That resulted in problems with the copy received by members of the Cambridge City Council.  That copy lost the meaning of my record document because only one side got copied internally in the City of Cambridge..  So the attachment is now on separate sheets to reduce difficulties in Cambridge, and to allow my record to be meaningful communicated to people reading official records of the next Cambridge City Council meeting.

At the August 15, 2018, meeting, I was surprised to observe that Nathaniel Cabral-Curtis, the usual meeting coordinator, was absent, and that the meeting was run by an older gentleman whom I did not recall having seen at any prior meetings.  I was sitting next to XXXXXXXXXX who had many exchanges with the coordinating gentleman in my presence.

In response to my questions, XXXXXXXXXXX informed me that the gentleman running the meeting was formerly the head of the Metropolitan District Commission, and that he was now acting as a consultant.

In the past, except for my difficulties getting notice of meetings, I have been highly impressed with the performance and apparent independence of the consultants.

There has been severe harm inflicted on the Cambridge side of the Charles River.  The harm was done by the Department of Conservation and Recreation based on plans which it inherited from the MDC on the Charles River.  The plans were very clearly inherited by way of planners who had moved to the MDC when the MDC was disbanded.  The plans were quite consistent with my understanding that at least some legislators voted to destroy the MDC because the MDC was so destructive of public property.

The harm to the Charles River was based on plans which date back to this consultant’s tenure with the MDC, with regulatory approvals that date back to his tenure.  Thus the plans approved by him were beyond any reasonable period of value because of expiration dates under the relevant statutes.  The time situation with regard to the age of destruction approvals was extreme.  Nevertheless the legislature voted to exempt these outrages from normal re-initiation of reviews which would be required based on the extreme amount of time which had passed.  Thus the destruction approved by the consultant went ahead without updating of reviews.

Very clearly those outrageously destructive plans say a lot as to the proclivities of this consultant.

My video reporting the outrages inflicted based on these MDC plans approved by this consultant as MDC Commissioner is posted on Youtube at  An analysis of the “improvements” by an international expert may be viewed at

To make the situation worse, the DCR is now implementing plans which are very clearly related to these outrages east of the BU Bridge.  The DCR now appears to be very close to more massive destruction, this time at Magazine Beach, as spelled out in my communication of June 6, 2017, and published on the website of the Friends of the White Geese at  Possibly imminent destruction is targeted at another 56 mostly excellent trees.

I have objected to the apparent intention to have the DCR permanently manage properties created by the I90 rebuild based on the extreme incompetence and destructiveness of the DCR managing these plans created under the responsibility of this person who is now acting as a consultant.  Additional grounds for objection include a large number of other instance of destructive behavior and heartless animal abuse, both during his leadership, and since his departure.

Based on the strikingly bad record of this consultant with regard to the Cambridge side of the Charles River, it is highly clear that (1) this consultant has a severe conflict of interest on matters concerning the Charles River, and (2) he has a terrible environmental record on the Charles River

We have gone from a situation of professional, independent behavior by Howard/Stein-Hudson Associates, Inc. to a situation where a key member of their team has strikingly filthy hands ON THE CHARLES RIVER.

It is no longer still appropriate for Howard/Stein-Hudson Associates, Inc. to be trusted as the consultant under the circumstances.

B. Attachment.

Page 1.

Robert J. La Trémouille

Selected Activist Experience, Central Cambridge

[Ed.: Document is two pages.  One page is the zoning map.  The other page is this explanation of notes on the zoning map.  In the original, this is a columnar table.  That does not directly convert to blog format.  So here is a less pretty translation without changing the content otherwise.]

 I                Maple Avenue Downzoning, C-1 to B

II               Marie Avenue Park.  First neighborhood Open Space zoning.

III               Cambridge St, N Side  C-2 districts btwn Hospitals changed to C-1.  C2B buffer created around Youville.

IV               Mellen Street Downzoning.  The C-2A area and the C-1 which it surrounds were previously zoned C-3.

V               Cambridge Common.  Opposed the destruction of the excellent thick park in Harvard Square corner .

VI              I90 study I proposed Green Line A spur from Comm. Avenue / BU Bridge to Harvard Medical to Harvard Station.

             Originated idea of connection of Harvard Medical Area to Soldiers Field Road east of BU Bridge.

VII             JFK Park was laid out so that cut and cover construction of a subway tunnel.

VIII             Harvard Houses district.  C-3 Ward changed to C-1.

IX            Area in Harvard Square deleted by Ward petitioners from Ward petition as result of flat out lie.

X           Ward Petition.  C-2B and O-2 areas, previously C3 / O3, plus the Harvard Houses area, south side of Mt. Auburn Street.

XI           Saved the historical building at 10 Mt. Auburn at the Rent Control Board.
Block changed from Business B to Res C-1 by Ward

XII           Personally saved Guffey Park at Arrow Street and Mass. Ave., in front of 2 Arrow Street..

XIII          Kerry Corner. Zoning created here, the balance of the C-1, and the SD14 district were probably GREATLY influenced by my saving historical 10 Mt. Auburn.

XIV          Corporal Burns Playground.  Helped save from Harvard expansion.

XV          La Trémouille Petition as warped by rogue steering committee.  Business B became BB-1, BB-2.

La Trémouille petition downzoned most of Green Street between Hancock and Sellers from Mass. Ave. zoning to neighborhood zoning.  There were a number of related clean ups on the boundaries on Green Street.

XVI         Anderson Petition.  O-3 to C-2B.  Clean ups of Green Street as noted in XV.

XVII Office to Office 1.  Created less dense Office Districts than Office 3.

XVIII Palmer Street.  Objected to destruction of every tree on the street because the trees “blocked the sunlight.” Page 2

[Ed: This is a cropping of the Cambridge Zoning Map.  The location of “VI” is Harvard Square proper.  Most of the organge areas marked “C-3" are the core of Harvard University.  The biggest area, middle left, is the world reknown Harvard Yard.  Running from “VI” to the right to the Red BB / BB-2 / BB-1 areas, then Orange C-2B, follow by O-3 in blue is Massachusetts Avenue, the main street of Harvard University.  The O-3 district to the right is Cambridge City Hall which, in turn, is the western end of Central Square, Cambridge.  Central and Harvard Squares are the two principal business districts (Squares) of Cambridge.

[The Harvard Square shopping district runs from the red and blue areas at the right through the blue O-3 and orange C-2B areas.  The bottom of the O-3 district is Mt. Auburn Street, another major boundary of the Harvard Square business district.  At the very bottom of the map is the Charles River, with the Boston / Cambridge boundary marked in the middle.  The whitish diagonal line toward the upper left corner indicates a break in the area depicted.  Above and below the break are portions of Harvard’s Law School and science / engineering facilities.]