Charlestown Cranks!

To the Editor: Cranks! We were called “Cranks”! At the BPDA’s recent Charlestown Plan Meeting, many who attended to comment were called “Cranks”. Checking the “crank” definition and meaning in the Collins English Dictionary, we found that if you call someone a crank, “you think their ideas or behavior are strange”.  However, the dictionary also defined the actual object “crank” as: “A crank is a device that you turn in order to make something move.”, “A device for communicating motion…”, “If you crank an engine or machine, you make it move or function…” (Collins English Dictionary) and “Next to the wheel, the crank is the most important motion-transmitting device…” (Britannica) It seems that both definitions can be true, as we would like to transmit motion and some people, perhaps the BPDA, think our ideas are strange. Yes, we are the “Charlestown Cranks” who want to transmit motion toward the best results for our community, not more of the same disrespect and ignorance of our communities worth.   We are the “Charlestown Cranks” trying to move the stalled engine of the BPDA toward solutions to the problems of our community: Yes, we are the “Charlestown Cranks” who want to transmit motion toward the best results for our community, with respect and consideration for our historic and vibrant community’s worth. We seek to preserve what makes it special and unique but address its weaknesses and vulnerabilities that are exposed by our geography. We are the “Charlestown Cranks” trying to move the BPDA toward solutions to the problems of our community: • The worst Traffic and Congestion in America! (U.S. News and World Report 10/13/2020) • Low Tree Canopy and High Asthma Rates • FEMA rating of Boston/Charlestown as “Retro-Grade” urban climate resilience • Inadequate and poorly placed Public Open-Space, Low National rank for green space per resident (Geotab) • Disrespect for our natural treasure, our Boston Harbor, and  our Chapter 91 public waterfront rights • Incremental “Spot re-Zoning” of lucrative development sites in lieu of masterplan • Planning justified using decades old, obsolete and expired Municipal Harbor Plan • Lack of frequent and reliable public transportation essential  to working lifestyles. • The largest public housing redevelopment in Boston, which does not address social, psychological, environmental and well-being issues of residents • Intention to segregate affordable housing in towers next to the fumes of the Tobin Bridge • High particular matter in the air from particle traffic and bottlenecked access • Lack of City-wide Comprehensive Professional Planning based on Cost-Benefit Analysis. • Preserving Charlestown’s History in the Founding of our Nation The list goes on…. Yes, we are the “Charlestown Cranks” trying to improve our community, work together, and get motion toward true waterfront access and social justice for All. We hope more “Cranks” will join in. PIER 5 Association Sherrie S. Cutler, AIA, sscutler@ECODESIGN.com Nitzan Sneh Christopher Nicodemus Rosemary Macero Diane Valle Anne Kelleher Zachary Cutler Barbara Babin Gerald Angoff …and other Charlestown Cranks!

Letters to the Editor