Secretary Pete Buttigieg is right, and it’s not just in other states — here in Somerville, these decisions are still killing Somerville residents today. MassDOT continues to ignore the needs and safety of the lowest-income neighborhoods, ignoring calls to add anti-particulate barriers along I-93 and ignoring calls to slow down traffic. Walk along Broadway from Sullivan Square, and you’ll see the anti-particulate barriers suddenly disappear — that marks the boundary between Somerville and Boston. Continue along Mystic Avenue and they appear at the boundary of Medford. This didn’t start recently — Somerville mothers in 1970 protested these future conditions. MassDOT has been ignoring Somerville for decades, or showing up only to let people know that they prioritize cars.
They even expect humans to use the Kensington Underpass to get between East Somerville and Assembly Row, which crosses multiple highway off and on ramps. They expect Winter Hill and Ten Hills residents to cross six lanes of Route 28 (McGrath) to get to a grocery store. SASS member Chris Dwan tweeted out the walk experience. Three people have died in MassDOT’s Corridor of Death in two years and we know more deaths will come; countless more will die due to MassDOT’s inaction on mitigating highway pollution.
Join us, Ayanna Pressley, and other elected officials on May 26th at 6 PM at the abandoned gas station lot at the northeast corner of McGrath and Broadway as we call on MassDOT to embrace Transportation Secretary Buttigieg’s words and act to reverse some of the racism visited upon our neighbors.
Read our letter to MassDOT and sign our petition