By Seth Daniel
Councilor Lydia Edwards this week said she expects to have a bit of a learning curve when it comes to addressing local issues as a new city councilor, but one issue she plans to take on immediately is the One Charlestown development.
Following the first meeting of the year at City Hall on Monday, Jan. 1, Edwards told the Patriot-Bridge that she wants to get clarity on one of the most controversial development projects in her district, One Charlestown. It’s a project that was the number one issue in the Town early last year, but has now become a great mystery enveloped in silence.
“I’ve hear all kinds of things about One Charlestown – that the funder may have left, and I’ve heard that the funder is still active,” she said. “One thing I want to get right on immediately is transparency on that project. Where are we?”
One Charlestown is the proposed public-private redevelopment of the Bunker Hill housing development – the largest public housing development in the City. The project originally proposed more than 3,000 units – including replacements of the 1,110 public housing units – on the site in a complete rebuild. After meetings throughout early 2017, the project went into silence last June, with a promise to return to the Town with an amended plan after Labor Day.
That never happened, and the City has said it has no new information either.
Edwards said she would like to have monthly meetings with the developer to clarify the situation.
“It’s stressful for those who are directly impacted and live there, and it’s stressful for those who will feel the impacts from the new development,” she said. “All of us deserve to be informed of whether it’s happening or not happening. They need to make us feel like we’re a part of this.”