October 8, 2014
- Translation support will be available at future CAC meetings.
- Soil remediation and demolition has begun on D2 block (radiator/scrap metal site) with planned completion of site remediation and preparation by December 2014.
- Historic Union Square Post Office has been sold to developer and entertainment promoter, Don Law. The City has met with the developer and discussed the importance of the historic WPA mural in the building’s lobby, the Union Square Revitalization Plan, and the desire to see a performing arts component within the building. Don Law has said he has no firm plan for the building and will reach out to the City once a plan is developed.
- Oct 20: Union Square Utility and Infrastructure Meeting, 6:30 p.m., Argenziano School (If you are planning to attend, be sure to confirm date/time/location.)
- Nov 6: Union Square and Washington Street Green Line stations design meetings: Holiday Inn at 6 p.m. (If you are planning to attend, be sure to confirm date/time/location.)
- CAC is working on developing its own website/Google group which will be accessible to the public and allow for discussion and archived conversations.
- Draft development timeline for D2 block and Union Square Neighborhood Plan will be posted on www.somervilebydesign.com on October 9.
- Process for developing Union Square Neighborhood Plan will be led by City of Somerville with support from hired consultants.
- US2, the Union Square master developer, will lead a process to design individual blocks within the master development.
- State permitting process for Mass Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) Environmental Impact Review will have a separate timeline; Developer/City may look to break up MEPA review into two phases: one for the D2 block, and another review for the project as a whole.
- Neighborhood Plan development begins in November 2014 and continues through 2015.
- Following a series of community meetings (~February), US2 will come forward with schematic design for D2 in April 2015 with other pieces to follow. D3 (south of the tracks on Webster Ave) also appears to be an area of focus, since it was mentioned several times by City officials.
- D2: construction begins fall of 2016; planned to be built by the time opens the same time as the T station.
- There was some discussion of how zoning overhaul overlaps with these processes and whether the zoning will need to change for the development parcels. Still no clear answer on this.
COMMUNITY BENEFITS AGREEMENT – Presentation by Somerville Community Corporation and Union United Coalition
- Introductions and background of participating people and organizations in Union United Coaltion
- Example: Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy – Staples Center and the LA airport
- Example: Kingsbridge Armory
- Example: Atlantic Yards, Brooklyn
- Union United CBA proposal (note: I didn't have a copy of the presentation and wasn't able to write down everything that was said, so this may not be a complete list.):
---40% of housing units reserved for low/moderate income (of which half would be required to be family sized)
---Multigenerational community center
---Public art program targeting local artists
---Project labor agreement: prevailing wages, qualified apprenticeship program, funding for job training
---Small business protections/program
---30% of commercial space would be affordable
---New public safety building located in Union Square
- Union United Proposal for Community Benefits Process: Establish a group to focus on community benefits convened by Union United Coalition with seats for CAC, US2, and other community groups.
- Discussion followed: some members of the CAC indicated a desire to see that community benefits be developed by the CAC with regular input and participation from community members. Concern was expressed about duplicating CAC's efforts.
- Suggestion was made by several CAC members that membership of CAC may need to change to be more representative of community.