Alewife Downzoning Defeated

The city council last night scrapped a controversial plan to "downzone" the Alewife section of West Cambridge to attract research and development firms to the city.

Arguing that the plan would provide jobs mainly for white collar residents, City Councilor David Sullivan led the fight against the bill, which was supported by many businessmen in the area.

The city's community development department argued that the downzoning could create as many as 18,000 new jobs, add $21 million to the city's tax base and provide 8500 construction jobs.

"The question is what kinds of jobs we will provide--jobs for the next graduating class of the Harvard Graduate School of Design or jobs for graduates of Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School," Sullivan said.

"The people that vote for me are people who work with their hands," Councilor Alfred E. Vellucci said. "The blue-collar jobs are already disappearing from this city," Vellucci added.


Downzoning would have put floor area and height limitations on new development in Alewife, which is currently zoned for industrial use. The restrictions would have decreased the cost of developing land for light industry and office space.

Recommended Articles