Alewife Study Group > W. R. Grace site > community feedback > Nov. 4 1996, buffer zone Search 

Response to temporary buffer zone
around W. R. Grace site,
as enacted by Cambridge City Council

On October 28, 1996: Cambridge City Council enacted a temporary 400-foot buffer zone for a six month period along Whittemore Avenue which would serve to protect abutting residential areas from development at the W. R. Grace parcel.
On November 4, 1996: Cambridge City Council passed an order calling for a 12 month temporary moratorium effective until November 1, 1997, which would limit any development at the W. R. Grace parcel to 40,000 square feet.)

Editorial To Cambridge Chronicle, November 4, 1996
Response to Temporary Buffer Zone Enacted by City Council

City Councilís vote to install a temporary Buffer Zone between development at the W. R. Grace site and neighboring residences was both a clever way for some Councilors to avoid voting on a tough issue and a small step towards protecting the Alewife neighborhoods. While concerned neighbors, supported by Councilors Triantifilou and Toomey, would rather have had the Buffer Zone last twelve months or, better yet, last forever, many were heartened by the new, albeit halfhearted, support they received from some previously hesitant Councilors.

Community Development must now respond to the planning challenge posed by the Alewife area. CDD must, very quickly, give the Council a land use proposal that protects area residents from the flooding, contamination, traffic and other threats posed by improper development at Alewife.

When this temporary Buffer Zone expires in April, Alewife area residents will expect the City Council to immediately move forward to protect their homes and neighborhoods. For neighbors, who have long felt they were fighting both the developer and their own City Hall, any additional delays in implementing adequate protections for their homes will be exceptionally hard to accept.

Sincerely, Craig Kelley

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