June 11, 2020
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Come join us for a zoom meeting this Thursday at 7:30 PM.
- Approval of May WAC minutes. Treasurer’s Report. (5 minutes)
- Issues from the community (10 minutes)
- Update on Black Lives Matter banner originally posted on MBTA bridge
- Parks, Open Spaces
- Newtonville Area Council letter - discuss, decide action - (see below)
- Summer schedule
- Updates on ZAP Committee - Zoning Reform & Landmarking Ordinance
- Community Outreach: Postcard
- Cleaning and re-lining of the water main under Chestnut will likely resume this week. This is needed before other planned work can be done. This will mean some inconvenience as water will have to be shut off during parts of the day. If your service is affected, you should get a direct notice from the city. But those who are looking to travel in the coming weeks should be forewarned that detours may be in place.
Waban Area Council
Meeting Minutes June 11 7:30pm
Held via Zoom
WAC Members Present Chris Pitts, Sallee Lipshutz, Megan Meirav, Ronald Marcus, Rena Getz, Isabelle Albeck, Dinah Bodkin, Bob Jampol.
Community Tarik Lucas, Neal Farber, Debra Waller, Deb Karl, Carol Todreas, Maureen Reilly Meagher.
May Minutes Approved. April Minutes Approved.
Black Lives Matter Banner Background: Week of June 1 a banner was put up on the fences of the Beacon St bridge over the T tracks. Shortly thereafter banner was shredded and on the ground. WAC discussed whether shredding of banner was due to wind or vandalism. RG, CP and SL pointed out that other banners (ie Waban Common) had been shredded due to windy exposed location. Issue remains unresolved. Rena pointed out that in any event, MBTA permission is needed to hang anything on those fences. Banner is currently at the home of Councillor Humphrey and he is taking charge of obtaining MBTA permission to hang banner on fence. RG suggested community board near Pine Straw as a place to voice opinions, air concerns, etc. CP: WIS was in charge of that board, but it has never been put to really good use.
CP has asked Tarik if he feels targeted or in any way unfairly treated by Newton Police and Tarik responded that he has no complaints with the Newton Police.
Parks, Open Spaces. BJ: (First grandson has arrived!) Open Space Plan is still in process, delayed somewhat by pandemic. Seven year plan with lots of great ideas that are unlikely to be funded. Newton Centre tennis courts will probably open in July with higher membership fee. Higher fees are necessitated by the tennis proprietor being unable to offer clinics due to Covid-19.
Zoning Reform: Zoning and Planning Committee reviewing proposed new Zoning Code. New draft of zoning map will be available in July. Current plan is to vote on New Zoning Ordinance at the end of this Council’s term (December 2021). ZAP is currently going through Article 3, Residential Districts, which comprises the vast majority of the total lots in Newton. The general sentiment among WAC members is that the new ordinance will permit significantly higher housing density in Newton. See WAC website (or Planning and Zoning on the city website) for documents and timeline.
Newtonville Area Council letter Letter authored by NAC President Peter Bruce sent to City Council asks for slowdown of large development projects in order that new building codes are put in place to allow for maximum public health safety. SL proposes motion that WAC endorse Peter’s letter. Motion passes. CP also suggested that WAC writes its own letter (BJ, SL and RG drafted for this assignment).
WAC Summer schedule: July and August meetings will be via Zoom.
Changes in Landmarking Ordinance. Will be addressed by City Council on June 22. New ordinance has more content and extended timeline. For the first time, Planning and Development Board may make a recommendation with respect to landmarking.
Announcements As in Agenda. In addition: Maureen announces DCR will hold “listening session” on June 25 as part of process to create a multi-use path on south side of Quinobequin Rd. The Friends of Quinobequin Park Land FB page will post a link to the Zoom meeting. BJ: June 24 Beacon St bike lane will be on city agenda.
Meeting adjourned 9:30pm
Respectfully submitted by Dinah Bodkin
June 14 2021