A 2,500-square-foot swath of cracked pavement and rusty fencing along Everett Street at the German International School of Boston has given way to the first public “green street” in Allston.
The project uses sustainable landscaping, including seven new trees, a rain garden, and permeable pavement to help collect and treat stormwater before it can carry pollutants into the nearby Charles River. It also has benches as well as planter and sidewalk art made by children from the German School.
At the project’s dedication on Monday (June 21), Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino applauded the “multifaceted partnership” that helped to make the new open space a reality. He addressed a crowd of neighbors, representatives from the city and community organizations, local green-space advocates, and staff from the German School, St. Anthony’s Parish, Harvard University, and Boston College.
“This is another example of how, working together, we can make this city environmentally better,” said Menino. “Boston is the third-greenest city in America because of people like you stepping up to the plate.”
The Everett Street project, led by the Allston Brighton Community Development Corporation and the Charles River Watershed Association in collaboration with the local community, received a $25,000 Harvard Allston Partnership Fund grant. It also was funded by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation Urban Forestry Fund, and the Boston College Neighborhood Fund.
The project underscores that the Allston Brighton Community Development Corporation and the Charles River Watershed Association, like Harvard, are interested in enhancing community vitality and greening. Harvard’s efforts in Allston include the creation of new sustainable open spaces such as the planned park behind the Honan Branch Library that will utilize similar stormwater management strategies; installation of new “learning gardens” this summer at the corner of Western Avenue and North Harvard Street; and an infiltration planter on Hague Street, where the treatment of roadway runoff is being assessed.
Harvard has provided $200,000 in Harvard Allston Partnership Fund grants to date, assisting 14 community organizations in beautifying the neighborhood, expanding existing community programs, and broadening access to those programs through community-based scholarships.