For immediate release Contact: Wendy Fox
26, 2007 617-626-1453
LOCAL OFFICIALS AND COMMUNITY LEADERS CELEBRATE IMPROVEMENTS AT FOSS PARK IN SOMERVILLE
of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) officials, state legislators, Somerville city
officials, and members of the Foss Park Neighborhood Association gathered today
to celebrate initial improvements at Foss Park, a DCR park at
the intersection of McGrath Highway and Broadway
in Somerville. The
improvements are being made with $100,000 included in the state’s Fiscal Year 2007
budget signed by Governor Deval Patrick earlier this year.
are delighted to be able to make these important improvements,” said DCR
Commissioner Richard K. Sullivan Jr. “The work we’re doing will have a lasting
impact on this popular urban park, and we thank the legislators from Somerville for their part
in supporting the money to fund it. As a former mayor, I also appreciate
everything the city of Somerville has done at Foss Park, and I look forward
to continuing our partnership.”
made so far at the park include five Big Belly solar trash compactors, which
can hold several times more trash and litter than a similarly sized regular
trash receptacle, as well as fresh exterior paint at the Latta Bathhouse,
dispensers for biodegradable mitts to pick up and dispose of dog waste, and
landscaping. Future improvements are to include new goal posts and nets, a
water fountain for humans as well as one for dogs, additional improvements to the
Latta Bathhouse, and portable toilets.
"This important investment of
state funds to improve Foss Park is a testament to how well our legislative
delegation works together and our shared commitment to investing
state funds into Somerville and into our parks system," said Senator Patricia Jehlen,
whose district includes parts of Somerville. "It
is gratifying that DCR, in partnerships with the Foss Park
Neighborhood Association, the city, and our delegation, was able to make
tangible improvements that will benefit every resident of Somerville."
Foss Park, covering
nearly 16 acres, was originally called Broadway Park. In 1921, it
was renamed in honor of Saxton C. Foss, son of the city’s poet laureate, Sam
Walter Foss. Saxton Foss had died in France during World
War I. The former Metropolitan District Commission (MDC) took over the park
from the city in 1954, and when the MDC merged with the state Department of
Environmental Management in 2003, the park came under the ownership of the
newly formed DCR.
"Green space is a precious resource
for an urban community such as Somerville,” said
Representative Carl Sciortino Jr., whose district also includes parts of Somerville. “Foss Park has
been a top priority since I entered office three years ago. I'm proud
to have been able to help secure funding in the House of Representative for
these improvements, and I appreciate the effort made by DCR and the state so
far. I look forward to continuing to work with DCR on future improvements
of the park for the benefit of this neighborhood and all of Somerville."
Foss Park is the largest
park in this densely populated city of 77,000 residents. The city of Somerville has been an
active partner with DCR, making its own improvements at the park and in the
“These are positive and welcome steps in upgrading
a crucial community resource, and we hope that DCR will continue to expand
their efforts,” Somerville Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone
said. “The City of Somerville has also contributed to improvements at Foss with thousands of dollars
in new sidewalks, plantings, landscaping, and new conventional trash
barrels. I hope we can work together at Foss as we have at Dilboy Stadium, and I congratulate DCR for taking these
initial steps toward a long-overdue restoration of a vitally important park.”
Said State Representative Tim Toomey, whose
district also includes parts of Somerville,
“These Big Belly trash bins provide an innovative, energy-efficient approach to
dealing with trash in our parks. I’d like to thank the Foss Park
Neighborhood Association – and everyone who worked hard on this – for helping
ensure a beautiful, clean future for Foss Park.”
In 2002, the
Foss Park Neighborhood Association formed to advocate for the park and address
concerns of maintenance and other issues there.
years of consistent advocacy, Foss Park is
experiencing a revitalization,” said Peter Ungar, chairman of the Foss Park Neighborhood Association.
“It's great to see the results of our efforts through tangible evidence, such
as the Big Belly units, new flower beds, and the newly painted pool house.
Looking ahead, the Neighborhood Association is excited about continuing this
productive relationship with the DCR."