With 15,000 residents taking the bus every day, Mayor Carlo DeMaria is exploring the possibility of adding a bus lane on Lower Broadway and continuing the push to bring the Silver Line into Everett.
“My focus now is on transportation,” he said during the Ward 4 community meeting on June 23. “Did anyone go to graduation? There’s no parking – I parked at City Hall.”
Therefore, one resident asked about building a parking garage. However, DeMaria said each space in a parking garage would cost at least $50,000. “It’s a very expensive proposal,” he said.
Transportation Planner Jay Monty said the city is working with Boston transportation officials to increase the number of outbound buses from Sullivan Square in Charlestown. He also said regular bus lanes could be added to Lower Broadway. “We’re looking at several angles,” said Monty.
In addition, he said the Silver Line currently ends behind Market Basket in Chelsea. Therefore, extending it to Everett is the next logical step.
Ward 4 School Committee Member Dana Murray raised concerns about streets that often become very narrow as cars are parked on either side. Monty said that although it can be unnerving for drivers to pass each other in such a tight space, there is a positive side to narrow streets. “It’s probably one of the most effective speed control measures there is in the city,” said Monty.
Police Chief Steven Mazzie said his officers are in the process of conducting speed surveys on every street in the city. Overall, the survey has shown positive results thus far; however, there are still a couple of trouble spots. “We had a car do 92 miles per hour on Fuller Street,” said Mazzie. “That’s one of the longer straightaways in the city; it’s always been a problem.”
He also said there is a dangerous curve on Lynn Street heading into Malden that is compounded by speeding motorcycles and mopeds. “People have to remember – we’re coming out of lockdown after more than a year,” said Mazzie. “People want to do things they couldn’t do before – they’re letting loose.”
Speaking about housing, DeMaria said there used to be a serious problem with illegal rooming houses in the city. “We could have 20 or so people living in a two-family house,” he said. “When I became mayor, we went out and we began shutting them down.”
However, affordable housing has presented its own set of obstacles. “The problem with affordable housing is there’s not enough units,” said DeMaria. “People want to live here; it’s a very desirable place to live – it really is.”
He also said more work is needed to fully revitalize the Everett waterfront. “There are a lot of undesirable properties that sit along the water,” he said.
In addition, DeMaria spoke briefly about the possibility of moving Everett Veterans Memorial Stadium. “The stadium only serves one purpose: football,” he said. “It sits on a beautiful parcel of land that could be anything.”