Kensington Underpass

On May 21st 2021, a partnership with Neighborways, East Somerville Main Streets and City of Somerville Public Space and Urban Forestry installed Phase 1 of Kensington Connector Project.

Included in this Phase 1 Project:

  • A fence scrim of This is East portraits by Meagan O'Brien

  • Art canvasses from WRAP 'EM, a community art project from 2018 that has never been shown before.  Featured artists: Centro Presente, Wil Rederos, Flyn Costello, Jennifer Judge/Amy Morrison, Cathy Lu, Matt Naboshek, Noel Proux-Decain, Susan Rice, Janet Van Fleet)

  • Wayfinding art panels by artist Liz LaManche

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The Kensington Underpass connects East Somerville to Assembly Square behind the Stop and Shop. It is currently an important walking corridor that is dangerous for pedestrians. Walkers have to cross three high speed lanes of traffic in order to reach the other side of the underpass. The area itself is in poor condition and is in significant need of upgrades. We are currently pushing the city towards changes at the Kensington Underpass. For more information on the project and what is being done, you can read this article by Nick DeLuca of Bostinno, or check out Walk Boston's April 2015 tour of Somerville.

Over the years, many meetings have taken place to discuss the priorities and technicalities of this project. 

In July 2019, Cheryl Pauline Richards, 52 of Somerville, was killed in the crosswalk at Kensington Underpass while walking across Mystic Avenue in the crosswalk Saturday evening near Assembly Square.

In response to this accident MASSDOT has made some important safety improvements in the Fall of 2019.  This included replacing the yield at McGrath and Mystic with a STOP sign.  Adding paint to narrow and better define traffic lanes on Mystic Ave. and adding new high reflective signs to indicate the crosswalk to vehicular traffic.  

East Somerville Main Streets continues to work the the transportation dept of the City of Somerville and MASSDOT to continue to improve this key gateway to East Somerville.  

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Interview on July 2019 Hit and Run with East Somerville Main Streets and state representative Mike Connolly

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