Central Square Business Association Board Meeting Notes – February 21, 2013

 

Present: Christina Abele, Patrick Barrett, Anya Bear, Josh XX, Hope Coolidge for Cathy Carr Kelly, Chris Durkin, Jay Kiely, Robin Lapidus, Kara XX for Jeff Lockwood, George Metzger, Mark Orent, Nabil Sater, Bill Scott, Gail Seidman, Absent: Carl Barron, Daniel Goldstein, David Levine, Norm McIver, Elaina Romano, Patrick Rowe, Ping Wong

Guests: Terry Smith, Chris Basler, Kevin Hoskins Kathy Watkins, DPW: Desiree XX, MBTA; Nancy XX and Emily Kou, Kleinfelder Location: CCTV

George called the meeting to order at 8:45 AM.

1. MBTA Presentation: Kathy and Desiree provided update on plans for upgrading the elevator headhouses. CS inbound headhouse is in first package of access upgrades resulting from agreement between T and Boston Center for Independent Living for 140 upgrades across the system. The CS inbound access is a higher priority than outbound. Project expected to start construction in late winter of 2014 and conclude in fall of 2015. New structures will be more transparent and secure than existing and provides for “straight through” that eliminates need to turn around in cab. Flat exterior wall design eliminates problematic sitting ledge of the existing structure. In put on signage to better identify Central Square is welcome as part of T’s current contract for general wayfinding improvements on the T. T is starting conversion to LED lighting for the lollypop T signs which will assure dependable and efficient lighting. Design is generally similar to completed elevator entrance at Brattle Square and Arlington St. With more glass on enclosure and elevator cab, importance of cleaning and maintenance to keep the glass clean was stressed.

2. Central Square Advisory Committee update. Council and Planning Board have both had meetings on C2 Recommendations. Council roundtable discussion on CS is being scheduled for March; robin will send notification. Importance of having CSBA speak up at all meetings to send a clear message that we care about the success of the process and will bring support to all meetings. George reported on informational forum at Mid Cambridge Neighborhood Association. A Better Cambridge residents group has been effective in countering the Cambridge Residents Association. There has been a fair amount of misinformation about the consequences of the C2 recommendations. It was noted that the passionate discussions and debates are generally good for the Square. Agreed that CSBA should develop and make public a position statement on C2.

3. Forest City petition. After approval by the planning board and an initial vote by the council the zoning change is expected to be approved at the next council meeting. The zoning change and the project design review have been conflated a the same process, when in fact once the zoning change is approved, the 350 Mass Ave buildingCSBA Board Meeting Notes February 21, 2013 Page 2

proposal will be subject to public review and approval under the large project review provisions, at which time the details of traffic mitigation and specific design and mitigation measures will be presented and debated.

4. Downzoning. No new down-zoning petition has been proposed. C2 opponents have labeled the recommendations an up-zoning. It was noted that CS has been down- zoned several times in the past three decades and that focusing on smart zoning or right-zoning is a more constructive approach than arguing debating up- v. down- zoning, which have such subjective connotations.

5. Strategic Planning. January 9 at IDEO was summarized with hand0out. Subsequent working group meetings are open to all, and plan is to have draft of strategic plan for review at March board meeting. Plan will have short and long term priorities.

6. ED Report: Robin summarized her written report, noting the CSBA annual meeting and Gala in at Moksa on March 19.

7. Nominating report. Nominations for 2013 board members were approved unanimously and will b e presented for a vote at the annual meeting on March 19.

8. December board meeting notes. Accepted (PB;GS) 9. December Year End and January financial reports. Accepted after discussion

noting loss for 2013 and need to set and hold to surplus budget for 2014. (PB;GS) Meeting adjourned at 10:15 AM Next Meeting: 3/21 at CARU Associates

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