City Council Update (1/12/18)

The City Council will not meet on Monday, 1/15 in observance of Martin Luther King Day. City Hall will be closed for regular business, but open from 2-5pm for the Day of Service (see below). Trash and recycling pickup will be one day behind. Our next regular City Council meeting will be on Monday, 1/22 at 5:30pm.

Porter Square Affordable Housing Approved
This week the Zoning Board approved a comprehensive 40B special permit for 40 units of permanently affordable housing at 1791 Mass Ave (“Frost Terrace”). The units will be affordable to people earning 30-60% of AMI (area median income), which is about $21-67K at today’s levels. Twenty-six of the units will have 2 or 3 bedrooms, and there will be a common room for family-friendly activities. The three historic houses on the site are being preserved, along with most of the significant trees. Funding includes $7M from the City’s Affordable Housing Trust. There was wide support for the project’s affordability, larger units, and proximity to transit, though some neighbors expressed concern about the lack of parking (limited to 3 spaces for disabled residents) and the building’s massing. I look forward to the opening of Frost Terrace and hope more projects will follow this model.

MLK Day of Service and Food Drive
I hope to see many of you at the annual Many Helping Hands MLK Day of Service in Central Square on Monday 1/15. Senator Elizabeth Warren will be at City Hall at 2:00 to give welcome remarks. If you live in the Huron Village area (see map below), you will receive an empty grocery bag on Sat. 1/13 to fill with non-perishable food to donate. Bags will be picked up before noon on MLK Day (1/15). Residents of other areas may bring food donations to City Hall on the Day of Service (use the rear entrance). Winter clothing and children’s books also are needed. If you will be out of town over the holiday weekend please consider donating items in advance; there are collection boxes in stores around town.

Sidney St. Star Market is Closing — What’s Next?
The Star Market on Sidney St. will close on February 3. Many of us have been working to secure an affordable grocery store for the surrounding neighborhoods at that location. There will be a community meeting on Thurs., 1/25 at 6pm at the Central Square Library with the property manager (Forest City).

Warming Center to Open on 1/16
The City’s first warming center for homeless persons will open this week in the basement of the Citywide Senior Center. Operated by Bay Cove Human Services, the center will welcome guests from 7:30pm to 6:30am, 7 days a week through the end of March. The space can accommodate up to about 35 adults. Dinner and breakfast will be provided along with support services. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact Bay Cove, which also operates the CASPAR shelter at 240 Albany St., where donations of warm winter clothing are gratefully accepted. Socks, underwear and unisex sweatpants are much needed.

Winter Office Hours Schedule
Check out my Office Hours schedule for the winter months. My next Office Hours will be Wednesday, 1/24 at 8am at NOCA Provisions (156 Rindge Ave.). I hope you can stop by! If you would like to let us know you’re coming, please either RSVP to the Facebook events or get in touch with my Legislative Aide Nora Bent ( I am available by appointment, too.

Visit the Calendar section of this website to see upcoming public events and meetings.

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Jan Devereux
City Councillor
Cambridge, MA