Submitted by State Representative Ken Gordon
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (“MassDOT”) has recently announced plans to construct a salt storage facility on land owned by MassDOT off Burlington Road in Bedford, alongside the intersection with Route 3. Many of us are concerned with the potential environmental impact as well as other issues raised by this plan.
Since MassDOT informed me of its plan to sell the property where the existing salt shed is located on Crosby Drive and build a new facility elsewhere, I have been in close communication with MassDOT. I attended the informational meeting that was conducted at Bedford’s Town Hall in late October. When I learned that many residents did not receive adequate notice, I arranged for a second meeting. That meeting will take place at the multi-purpose room at Bedford Town Hall at 7 p.m.. on January 15, 2015.
MassDOT will bring representatives who will be prepared to discuss the design and construction of the project. This will include excavation, traffic, construction, landscaping, noise, environment, operations and other issues. Bedford residents will be able to attend and participate in a full and open discussion. I encourage all concerned residents to attend the meeting and make your opinions heard.
In my discussions with MassDOT, I have stressed that any plan to build a new salt storage shed must obtain all necessary approvals from the appropriate Bedford town committees, such as the Conservation Commission and the Board of Health. MassDOT is subject to the same scrutiny as any other land owner regarding issues of the environment, health or wetlands. I sought and obtained MassDOT’s assurance that it will appear before the necessary town boards to obtain any needed approvals. As a result, Bedford will be able to use established town procedures to protect itself from any environmental, health, or public nuisance impact.
I have also discussed with MassDOT alternatives to the proposed location. This has come about in the context of my overall conversations about resolving the frustrations regarding the salt shed on Grant Avenue in Burlington. In all my discussions with MassDOT I have advocated for the best interests of the district, and will continue to do so. I will keep you informed of all progress and developments.
Please feel free to contact me with any additional questions or concerns.
State Representative, 21st Middlesex District