Alewife Study Group > government > Sept. 14 1999, Metropolitan District Commission, press release Search 

Arlington - Belmont - Cambridge
Coalition For Alewife

For Immediate Release

For More information call Carolyn Mieth: 864-6751

September 1, 1999

Public meeting at MDC Headquarters,
Tuesday, September 14, 6:00 PM, 20 Somerset Street, Boston

Bowing to pressure from citizens and elected officials in Arlington, Belmont and Cambridge, the MDC has agreed to hold a public meeting to discuss future plans for lands contained within the Alewife Reservation. The Alewife Reservation is a 120-acre willdlife refuge adjacent to the Alewife T-Station with portions in North Cambridge, Arlington and Belmont.

In the past, several acres of wetlands and state regulated '4-F' park lands (the most restrictive category of park land) within the Alewife Reservation have been rented by the MDC to the Arthur D. Little Company for use as a parking lot. The price paid for this rental was approximately ten cents per space per day.

Arthur D. Little has recently sold their property to O'Neill Properties of Philadelphia, PA, who have requested a renewal of the terms of this rental agreement.

In a hastily scheduled meeting to which residents of Arlington, Belmont and Cambridge were given less than one day's notice, the MDC, on June 24, gave preliminary approval to a rental permit with the new owners, O'Neill Properties.

The entire site, the former campus of the Arthur D. Little Company, is contained within the Alewife floodplain. It abuts the Alewife Reservation, a wildlife refuge listed as one of only a few 'urban wilds' in Massachusetts.

There is some question as to whether the rental of the MDC park land is legal without an act of the legislature.

The Coalition For Alewife has called on the MDC to discontinue its policy of renting 4-F park lands within the Alewife Reservation. The Coalition further recommends restoration of this publicly owned parcel to wetlands in conformance with Governor Paul Cellucci's goal of restoring 3000 acres of wetlands by the year 2010.

Contact the Alewife Study Group, North Cambridge Massachusetts, by email at