Silver Maple Forest and Alewife Reservation — Background

Published by Will Brownsberger

Will Brownsberger is State Senator from the Second Suffolk and Middlesex District.

4 replies on “Silver Maple Forest and Alewife Reservation — Background”

  1. Hi,
    Thank you for your efforts on behalf of the Silver Maple Forest. I have not seen any recent posts, so I just want to make sure that you are supporting the Rogers Amendment and will support the move to examine revised climate projections that show that preserving the integrity of this area is even more important for flood mitigation and biome preservation.
    I also hope you will consider standing up in favor of the cause of affordable housing by acting to increase the percentage of housing units that would have to be set aside in any projects that involve such environmentally sensitive areas. Loosing the Silver Maple Forest in the name of affordable housing for a project that provides very few affordable units would be an enormous setback for our citizens on two critical fronts.
    Thank you very much for your efforts over the years on this work.

  2. So glad to see the write up in the Arlington Advocate today about Will Brownsburger’s attendance at the protest and support of saving the Silver Maple forest. This is why I am so glad you are a Mass State rep as you really understand the need for a functioning urban environment…for wilderness, people’s recreation and climate change! How can we win this? We need to ameliorate coming flood issues and protect our native biomes! Thanks for your stand and let’s hope it will keep the maples standing!

  3. Thank you, Colleen and David.

    I do remain absolutely in support of state efforts to purchase the Silver Maple Forest. However, I passed language similar to the current Rogers amendment twice in previous years, only to have it vetoed by the Governor.

    The Patrick administration is very committed to affordable housing. They are also committed to land conservation and to urban parks, but in both categories they have higher priorities than the Silver Maple Forest.

    Unfortunately, that means that, in practice, money to preserve the Silver Maple Forest needs to be raised by the communities most affected — Arlington, Belmont and Cambridge. All of these communities have also so far had higher priorities.

    The Rogers amendment was defeated in the House in the recent debate on the Environmental Bond Bill. Apparently, the House is tired of having it vetoed. While I support it in principle, I do not wish to raise false hopes of a state acquisition at this stage.

    Any persisting efforts to obtain state funding should at this stage be directed towards the Patrick administration, which could, if it chose, make the Silver Maple Forest acquisition a priority without legislative action. To be clear, I am not urging a persuasion campaign, because I do not believe it would be effective. I’m just saying that is where the decision-making power lies.

    In 2007, we ran a local grassroots campaign and put over 1530 signatures on the Governor’s desk urging him to make this a priority, but we were rebuffed.

    At this stage, the most viable preservation options are private funding and miracles. Miracles do happen, but I’m not sure where the miracle workers are to be found.

    Regarding the Cambridge climate study, I’m very excited about that work.I’ve actually put in place funding to extend that study outwards beyond the core areas modeled by Cambridge in their initial work, expected this fall. I do feel it will have long term implications for development all over the region. I don’t think we’ll be able to argue for a moratorium just for this project though. There is a lot of construction going on all over the metropolitan area that is at equal or great or risk.

  4. It is all so depressing. Apparently, we will not have a new governor soon enough.

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