Capuano on Rutherford Ave: 'We're Still Working On It'
On a recent visit to Medford, Capuano told a Patch editor he's still exploring the Rutherford Avenue redesign project.
Rep. Mike Capuano, D-Somerville, was in Medford this week talking to local business leaders. But while he was in town, Jarret Bencks, the Patch editor in Medford, checked in with the congressman about his involvement in the Rutherford Avenue redesign project.
Capuano's comment: "We're still working on it."
The Patch editor told him some people in Charlestown thought the public wasn't going to have a chance to weigh in on the project at this stage. Capuano said: "I don’t know where they’re getting those impressions from, I know the facts and we’re still working on it."
Earlier this year, Capuano stirred up debate about the city's plans to resurface Rutherford Avenue and transform it into more of a pedestrian-friendly boulevard. The congressman sent a letter to the Charlestown Neighborhood Council -- which has endorsed the city's so-called "surface option plan" -- saying he had some questions about the traffic impact of the project.
In May, Capuano hosted a heated community meeting on the project, where dozens of people, both for and against the city's design, voiced their concerns.
Those in favor of moving the project forward have feared that Capuano could slow distribution of the federal funds necessary to get the project to its next phase, though Capuano assured the community in May that he helped secure a $17 million earmark for the work and intends to see it used.