Be Somerville

On November 23, 2017, in Latest News, by The Somerville Times

A monthly look at ways to get involved with your city: Dont just live in Somerville, be Somerville

By Joseph A. Curtatone 

(The opinions and views expressed in the commentaries and letters to the Editor of The Somerville Times belong solely to the authors and do not reflect the views or opinions of The Somerville Times, its staff or publishers)

While my staff has provided many ways below for you to stay civically engaged with your city over the next few weeks, I want to encourage you get involved in your community this holiday season in other ways too. Support our students at this Saturday’s Somerville High School Holiday Craft Fair or attend a fundraiser for Puerto Rico at Flatbread in Davis Square. Perhaps you can make a charitable contribution to one of our many local nonprofit organizations or head out on Small Business Saturday and support our local economy. Whatever avenue you choose, I hope you embrace the spirit of giving this holiday season.

From my family to yours, happy Thanksgiving, Somerville! I wish you all a safe and joyful holiday with friends and family.

Community Members Sought to Serve on GLX Working Group
As part of a regional partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, and the Cities of Cambridge and Medford, the City of Somerville is seeking residents to serve on the Green Line Extension (GLX) Working Group. The Working Group’s role will focus on community impacts from construction activities, and members will assist with planning and implementation of community meetings related to construction. The City of Somerville is seeking applicants with knowledge of or experience with GLX planning, community planning or advocacy, and/or construction management, as well as strong social networks in the neighborhood and multilingual capacity. Interested residents should submit a letter of intent by Friday, November 24, to or by mail to Transportation & Infrastructure Division, Somerville City Hall, 93 Highland Ave., Somerville, MA  02143. Additional information is available at

Volunteers Needed to Administer Student Health Survey
The City seeks volunteers willing to give up approximately two hours of their time to help administer the student health survey to high school students in February 2018. Are you interested in meeting new people and helping out your community? If so, contact Cory Mashburn at for more information or to sign up.

SHS Renovation: Changes to Central Hill Campus Parking Meeting, 11/27
With construction on the new Somerville High School set to begin early next year, gradual changes to the parking options on the Central Hill Campus (City Hall, Somerville High School, and the Somerville Public Library), will also begin at that time. Join City staff to review the parking study conducted by consultants from Nelson\Nygaard and to discuss the upcoming parking changes. More information, including the study’s executive summary, can be found online at
When/where: Monday, November 27, at 6:30 p.m. in the Somerville High School Library, 81 Highland Ave.

Union Square District Improvement Financing (DIF) Hearing, 11/28
Residents are invited to attend and be heard at a public hearing of the Board of Aldermen Finance Committee around the proposal to create a Union Square Development District that will allow for Union Square District Improvement Financing. Mayor Curtatone will open the meeting with a brief presentation, and then it will be opened up for public testimony. Visit for more information about the proposals.
When/where: Tuesday, November 28, at 6 p.m. in the City Hall Aldermanic Chambers, 93 Highland Ave.

Union Square Coordinated Development Plan, 11/30
Master Developer US2’s final proposed plan, the Union Square Coordinated Development Plan is before the Planning Board, and all interested persons are invited to attend and/or comment. Spoken testimony will be taken at the meeting, and written testimony can be submitted through November 30 by mail to OSPCD, Planning Division, 93 Highland Ave., Somerville, MA 02143; by fax to 617.625.0722; or by email to Staff reports, plans, and Board decisions for the project can be viewed at
When/where: Thursday, November 30, at 6 p.m. at City Hall, 93 Highland Ave.

Somerville Redevelopment Authority Seeking New Member
The Somerville Redevelopment Authority (SRA) is a five-person board tasked with implementing the City’s urban renewal plans. Interested Somerville residents with experience in community planning, public transportation, transit-oriented development, real estate development, housing or financial services, or design and architecture are encouraged to apply by submitting a resume and statement of interest to by close of business on Friday, December 8.

Villens at WorkScavenger Hunt
The City of Somerville has begun a Workforce Development Strategic Plan to help guide investment in the local workforce system and we need your input. The ‘Villens at Work’ scavenger hunt will help the City learn about your career goals are as well as introduce you to the many businesses, workers, and skill-building programs in the city. Complete the tasks and you’ll be entered to win a $200 gift card to a Somerville restaurant of your choice. New challenges, along with additional bonus prizes, will be released every two weeks. The scavenger hunt ends December 1. For more information, visit and click on the ‘Strategic Plan’ tab.

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City Calendar
Look up city events and meetings (as well as agendas and minutes) 24/7 on the City calendar at


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