Summaries of Globe "Scheme Z" Articles

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Here is a chronological sampling of Boston Globe articles on Scheme Z, dating from time that the plan broke into public consciousness, around 1990, through the dénouement, in 1997. Complete texts of these articles may be obtained, for a fee, through the Globe's website: http://www.boston.com/globe/search/

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DATE: Sunday, June 24, 1990

By Robert Campbell, Boston Globe Correspondent

CAUTION: HIGH BRIDGE AHEAD; ARTERY PLAN INCLUDES AN AWFUL SCHEME FOR A GREAT WALL ACROSS THE CHARLES

"The grotesque monstrosity that will be the new Central Artery requires a certain power of imagination to be grasped. Maybe that's why people are only now beginning to get upset about it."

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DATE: Sunday, August 26, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

DEVILLARS TO WEIGH IN WITH ARTERY CONDITIONS

Massachusetts' chief environmental protection official this week will require the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project to pay for a battery of environmental and recreational improvements -- including $20 million for the Charles River Basin -- as a requirement for receiving regulatory approvals from him. DeVillars will seek to force project planners to build a Golden Gate Bridge-style crossing of the Charles River, instead of the ungainly viaduct now planned, and to promise that 75 percent of the downtown land freed up by the depression of the Artery will remain open space, parks and walkways.

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DATE: Friday, August 31, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

DEVILLARS' FANFARE ON ARTERY IS MUTED

Reportedly under heavy fire from Gov. Dukakis, Environmental Affairs Secretary John P. DeVillars has retreated from last week's promise to use his legal power to squeeze the $5 billion Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project for ''every last ounce of environmental and recreational benefit'' with a ruling that appears to many observers far less stringent. DeVillars' ruling was released shortly before midnight Wednesday, minutes before the legal deadline. As late as Wednesday afternoon it was being shorn of tough edges. According to sources, Transportation Secretary Frederick P. Salvucci and Dukakis' chief economic adviser, Alden Raine, called DeVillars' undersecretary, James Gomes, up to the State House for a last-minute editing session in which they radically toned down DeVillars' ruling.

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DATE: Sunday, November 18, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

ENVIRONMENTALISTS, OTHERS MAKE FINAL ATTEMPT TO HALT INTERCHANGE

Environmentalists and neighborhood groups in Charlestown and Cambridge are gearing up a last-ditch campaign to block state environmental approvals for the Central Artery project's 16-lane Scheme Z interchange. Mayor Flynn met yesterday with Charlestown residents to hear their concerns that the 11-story, 700-foot-wide structure, which would cover an area the size of Boston Common at the northern entrance to the city, would overwhelm their neighborhood with visual blight, shadows, noise and air pollution.

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DATE: Sunday, December 2, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SCHEME Z PLANNERS BENT RULES, SOME CHARGE

Several environmental leaders and employees within state environmental agencies are accusing the Dukakis administration of bending and sidestepping environmental protection regulations in a rush to obtain final approvals for the $5 billion Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project. Sources in state government said that Environmental Affairs Secretary John P. DeVillars and agency heads under him have been facing intense pressure from Artery officials to approve a proposed 16-lane interchange called Scheme Z despite possible infringements on protected parkland at the mouth of the Charles River and questions about adherence to environmental review procedures.

Public documents on file with the state show that a key ruling in August by DeVillars, which moved the project toward ultimate final approvals, was altered in ways helpful to the project by officials identified by several sources as aides to Gov. Dukakis, including his chief development adviser. In several places, the ruling was altered and new statements added to downplay DeVillars' concerns about the impacts of Scheme Z. One source said, "The general pattern that has gone on, starting in June, was that one of DeVillars' staff was sending stuff to Salvucci's office for them to review and rewrite the way they wanted it."

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DATE: Sunday, December 2, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

DUKAKIS AIDES MADE CRUCIAL REVISIONS IN PROJECT'S INITIAL OK

A key approval issued in August by the state's chief environmental protection officer for the $5 billion Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project underwent several subtle but significant revisions in the hands of Dukakis administration officials. Documents on file at the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act office reveal the changes between the final draft of the ruling as written by Environmental Affairs Secretary John P. DeVillars and his staff and as it was issued the next day, Aug. 29. (Story includes before-and-comparisons of the DeVillars draft and the version as edited by Salvucci attorneys and other Dukakis aides.)

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DATE: Tuesday, December 4, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

RED FLAGS ON SCHEME Z RISE AT CITY HALL

New concern and opposition developed yesterday at Boston City Hall to the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project's proposal for a 16-lane interchange over the Charles River known as Scheme Z. The chairman of the City Council's planning and development committee, Councilor at Large Michael J. McCormack, said he is "very much opposed" to Scheme Z, calling it "a monstrosity and a catastrophe."

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DATE: Wednesday, December 5, 1990, Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

LEGISLATION WOULD DROP SCHEME Z ONTO A CITIZENS' DRAWING BOARD

The state representative for Boston's North End and part of Charlestown is planning to file legislation today that would block construction of the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project's 110-foot-high Scheme Z interchange and require it to be recast by a citizens' panel. The action by Democratic Rep. Salvatore F. DiMasi comes as several Cambridge lawmakers are preparing their own legislation to block Scheme Z.

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DATE: Wednesday, December 5, 1990 City edition Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

STATEWIDE GROUP BLASTS SCHEME Z; BILL CALLS FOR A REVAMP BY CITIZENS

A group representing local environmental protection officers from across Massachusetts last night called for the rejection of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project's proposed Scheme Z interchange over the Charles River, charging it violates laws and "will severely degrade the environment." The board of the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions, which represents panels from almost all of the state's 351 cities and towns, approved a statement that the group is "gravely concerned" about the 110-foot-high interchange and wants it redesigned.

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DATE: Friday, December 7, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

ENGINEER PROPOSES AN ALL-TUNNEL OPTION TO SCHEME Z

A Cambridge traffic engineer yesterday presented before three government agencies an all-tunnel alternative to the controversial Scheme Z interchange over the Charles River proposed as part of the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project. Steve Kaiser said his modified plan would avoid "re-creating the Central Artery on top of the Charles River" and could create a vast new park at the river's mouth. His plan could also accommodate the North Station-to-South Station railroad link transit planners have sought for a century. Kaiser, a respected engineer among local transportation planners, is a former state environmental protection official who worked with Salvucci in the 1960s, when they were both engineering students, to stop the Inner Belt expressway.

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DATE: Sunday, December 9, 1990, front of Sunday Focus section

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SCHEME Z: IT'LL GET YOU ACROSS THE CHARLES RIVER, BUT AT WHAT PRICE? CRITICS ASK

Somehow you've got to cross the river.

That's the easiest way to begin any explanation of the outrage rapidly engulfing the $600 million interchange called Scheme Z that is supposed to be built as part of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project. As deadlines for key regulatory approvals for the artery-tunnel project become imminent, and two decades of dreaming finally promise to become a decade of digging, Scheme Z has emerged as the principal remaining controversy threatening next April's planned commencement of the $5 billion effort.

(With sidebar: IS THIS WILD AND CRAZY RIDE IN YOUR FUTURE?)

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DATE: Sunday, December 9, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SALVUCCI HIT FOR BACKING GARDEN PLAN

State Transportation Secretary Frederick P. Salvucci is being accused by environmentalists of trying to "lock in" the construction of the Central Artery project's widely opposed Scheme Z interchange by urging quick approval for a new Boston Garden complex. "It's just inappropriate and reprehensible," said Karen Pelto, director of the 1,000-member Charles River Watershed Association, which also opposes Scheme Z. "We should not have a private project precluding any alternatives to Scheme Z."

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DATE: Thursday, December 13, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

ALL-TUNNEL ALTERNATIVE WON'T WORK, SAY BACKERS OF ARTERY SCHEME Z

A proposed all-tunnel alternative to the Central Artery project's widely opposed Scheme Z interchange would face probably insurmountable construction challenges, engineering specialists and an urban planner said yesterday. In an appearance sponsored by the Artery Business Committee, which supports the project, the specialists said the all-tunnel alternative developed by Cambridge engineer Stephen Kaiser to the 11-story, 450-foot-wide Charles River crossing would be unbuildable because of the unstable river floor and unacceptable impacts on highway traffic and public transportation. Daniel Thomas King, president of Citizens for a Livable Charlestown, a group that has generated opposition to Scheme Z, said, "The Artery Business Committee is the highest-paid bunch of cheerleaders that state Transportation Secretary Fred Salvucci could ever find. When they talk you can barely see Fred's mouth moving."

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DATE: Friday, December 14, 1990

By Peter J. Howe, Globe Staff

ARTERY SCHEME Z SCORED AS 'NIGHTMARE' AT HEARING

Charlestown residents and opponents of the Central Artery project's Scheme Z interchange last night blasted the planned 16-lane Charles River crossing as a "nightmare," "travesty" and "horror show" at a hearing attended by the state's top highway officials. While most critics said they had no wish to kill the whole $5 billion Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project, several expressed skepticism that no alternative can be found to the colossal interchange that would contain as much new elevated highway as the depression of artery is to eliminate.

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DATE: Sunday, December 23, 1990 Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SCHEME Z FINAL QUESTION AS RULING ON ARTERY NEARS

With 10 days remaining before the deadline for a key state environmental ruling on the $5 billion Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project, one of its most critical and controversial links, the 16-lane Scheme Z crossing over the Charles River, looms like a giant question mark over the entire project.

Over the past month, opposition to the proposed $600 million, 11-story-high structure has crescendoed. Environmentalists, politicians and community leaders from Cambridge and Charlestown have attacked Scheme Z for being huge and blighting, a swirling tangle of expressway ramps better suited to Houston or Los Angeles than to Boston.

"We picked this plan, Scheme Z, because it solves the transportation problems and it puts all the elevated facilities permanently in the railroad yards, farther away from Charlestown than I-93 is today," Salvucci said. "I don't think it's written in stone that bridges have to be ugly. They can enhance the environment. There are lots of cities all around the world where it's proven they do."

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DATE: Thursday, January 3, 1991 Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

DEVILLARS GIVES MAJOR OK TO ARTERY PROJECT

On his last day in office, state Environmental Affairs Secretary John DeVillars yesterday gave a major approval to the $5 billion Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project, but drew harsh criticism from environmentalists for declining to block its widely opposed Scheme Z interchange. DeVillars said his approval included "strong recommendation of further review of Scheme Z, including the exploration of alternatives." He required the formation by Feb. 1 of a design review committee including community leaders, environmentalists and architects to find ways to make Scheme Z more attractive but warned against "endless review and delay."

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DATE: Sunday, January 27, 1991 Focus section front

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

WILL ARTERY SUFFER FATE OF NY'S WESTWAY? HOW LEGAL SNIPING FELLED ANOTHER HIGHWAY PLAN

It was the city's great modern dream, a multibillion-dollar extravaganza designed to solve downtown's worst traffic problems with a massive new underground thoroughfare while creating dozens of acres of new land near the waterfront for parks, homes and development.

With much of the cost to come from the highway trust fund in Washington, governors, senators and mayors fought for years to make it happen. The city's business powers and construction unions itched to get it started; the city's leading newspaper editorialized relentlessly for it.

And ultimately, a decade after it was first launched, the project died, stalled unto death by the legal sniping of environmentalists and transit advocates, to be replaced by a much less ambitious road-construction project and more money for public transit.

The project described here was New York's $2 billion Westway, which died in 1985. But to some observers in Boston, this scenario is coming to sound more and more like an obituary that could be written for the $5 billion Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project if things get much worse.

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DATE: Monday, February 4, 1991 Metro Region front

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

ANTI-TUNNEL GROUP'S LINK RAISES QUESTION

The Committee for Regional Transportation had barely introduced itself last August before critics began charging that it was merely ''a front'' for an East Boston parking lot owner trying to sabotage the $5 billion Central Artery project to save a few $9-a-day parking spaces. But the extent to which the Committee for Regional Transportation serves Goldberg's interests or represents legitimate opposition to the project remains murky. Who is using whom more remains a question, too. In some ways, the situation represents a classic conundrum about when an "unholy alliance" between true believers and special interests becomes unethical.

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DATE: Thursday, April 4, 1991

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SCHEME Z OPTION NEARER; COMMITTEE STUDYING BRIDGE, TUNNEL PLANS

Halfway through its task, a committee convened by the Weld administration to redesign the Central Artery project's Scheme Z interchange has made substantial progress and may kill the plan altogether, several participants said yesterday.

Even leading critics who have filed lawsuits to stop Scheme Z -- a proposed $600 million, 70-acre structure that would include 16 lanes across the Charles River -- have expressed happy surprise at how much independence and authority the committee has been given to rework the widely opposed plan.

In the past week, a bridge design expert from Switzerland, Christian Menn, who was hired as an independent consultant for the committee, has unveiled a well-received preliminary design for a double-deck bridge over the Charles that would be half as wide and half as high as Scheme Z.

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DATE: Sunday, April 14, 1991 Focus section front

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

WOULD SCHEME Z BURY A POTENTIAL BACK BAY? PLANNERS HAVE A VISION FOR 400-ACRE STRETCH

On top of all the other reasons people have found to hate the Central Artery's Scheme Z interchange plan -- it's big, it's ugly, it's confusing -- now comes one more from a pair of local urban planners: It would pave over what could be Boston's next Back Bay.

The idea might sound like a stretch toward absurdity, especially for anybody driving into Boston on Interstate 93 who looks over and sees a concrete mixing factory, a trash-transfer station, a sewage pumping plant and acres of blighted railroad shops and storage yards. But to Peter Roudebush and Brad Bellows, this long-isolated 400-acre stretch of East Cambridge, Somerville and western Charlestown is an area of enormous potential development value that would only be thrown away if consigned to the shadows of miles of elevated highway ramps.

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DATE: Saturday, June 1, 1991

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

SCHEME Z DECLARED 'DEAD' BY PANEL CHIEF; BUT AGREEMENT IS LACKING ON AN ALTERNATIVE; HIGHER COSTS ALSO FEARED

The chairman of an advisory committee to the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project declared yesterday that its widely opposed Scheme Z Charles River highway crossing "is dead," but committee members failed to agree on what should succeed it. Boston developer Stanley Miller, chairman of the redesign committee, said before the meeting, "Scheme Z is dead . . . Scheme Z has no further credibility because of the work of this committee. This is a major victory."

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DATE: Friday, January 24, 1992 Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff and Gary S. Chafetz, Boston Globe Correspondent

CAMBRIDGE'S OK SEEN NEAR ON ARTERY JUNCTION REDESIGN

CAMBRIDGE -- City officials are on the verge of agreeing to an alternative design for the Scheme Z interchange and Charles River Crossing that would lead them to drop their lawsuit against the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project, sources said yesterday.

The new design includes substantially fewer ramps, a narrower bridge over the Charles River and a tunnel under the river between Storrow Drive and the Tobin Bridge ramps. The total cost is expected to be $200 million more than Scheme Z, and it is unclear how much the federal government will contribute.

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DATE: Friday, March 13, 1992 Page 1

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff and Gary S. Chafetz, Boston Globe Correspondent

ACCORD LIFTS A ROADBLOCK TO BIG DIG; CONSERVATIONISTS TO SHELVE SUIT; SEPARATE MOVE ENDS SCHEME Z

State transportation officials and the Conservation Law Foundation are expected to announce an agreement today under which the environmental group will suspend its lawsuit that had been seen as a major threat to the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project. Action on the suit was to have begun in federal court this morning.

The agreement is expected to force the state to toughen parking limits in Boston and Cambridge and expand mass transit to ease traffic congestion. The accord will allow the foundation, whose victories include the court ruling that forced the $6 billion Boston Harbor cleanup, to renew its suit if the agreement is broken.

Another big legal and political cloud hanging over the artery-tunnel project receded yesterday when a commission appointed by Gov. Weld's administration to redesign the widely opposed Scheme Z interchange unanimously endorsed a successor design. Previously, the panel had been seen as hopelessly divided.

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DATE: Sunday, September 13, 1992

By Peter J. Howe, Boston Globe Staff

CAMBRIDGE, STATE REMOVE HURDLE FOR NEW CHARLES RIVER CROSSING

CAMBRIDGE -- City and state officials said yesterday they have signed an agreement that moves them a giant step toward ending a long legal battle over a planned $600 million Central Artery interchange and Charles River crossing.

Later this week, nearly two years after political and environmental opposition exploded over the artery project's planned Scheme Z interchange, state officials finally expect to ask environmental regulators to approve a scaled-down version of the interchange.

"We've declared peace," Robert J. Baum, chief legal aide to Transportation Secretary Richard L. Taylor, said in an interview yesterday. "I think this agreement takes a major litigant and legal threat off the table."

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DATE: Friday, July 30, 1993

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

ALTERNATE PLANS TO SCHEME Z UNVEILED

Three long-awaited alternatives to the politically unacceptable Scheme Z highway project were unveiled yesterday, ranging in additional cost from about $500 million to almost $800 million.

An alternative to the discarded Scheme Z element of the Charles River crossing portion of the Central Artery-Third Harbor Tunnel project will be chosen later this year, after a couple of months of public comment, project and state transportation officials said yesterday.

The spaghetti-like Scheme Z structure, with 16 lanes on three bridges, which was hooted down by community groups in Boston and Cambridge, will instead apparently become a less obtrusive complex with 10, 12 or 14 lanes.

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DATE: Sunday, September 12, 1993 City Weekly

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

DECISION TIME FOR ARTERY SCHEMERS; HIGHWAY DEPT. GETS SERIOUS ABOUT CHOOSING A VIABLE PLAN FOR ARTERY'S RIVER CROSSING

It was one of those grand Massachusetts political battles: Three adjoining communities saw an engineering and aesthetic monstrosity being forced on them, and they joined in rebellion.

Scheme Z, the northernmost portion of the Central Artery and Third Harbor Tunnel project, designed to link downtown and Beacon Hill with Charlestown and Cambridge, was unveiled in 1990. With six loop ramps casting shadows over Cambridge, plus three bridges and 16 automobile lanes spanning the Charles River, it was the transportation equivalent of a whopping tax increase.

Sketches of it looked like a plate of spaghetti. Almost nobody defended it, and 17 months later a bridge design review committee came up with another idea. This was a new and improved model, though the name - "8.1D Mod 5" - was arguably even worse than the notorious "Scheme Z."

This week the Massachusetts Highway Department gets serious about choosing some manner of architectural form that, when built, in about 10 years, will carry thousands of cars daily into and out of Boston. "Eight-one-dee-mod-five," plus two alternatives with further refinements, will be described, debated and variously praised and assailed at an all-day public hearing on Tuesday.

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DATE: Saturday, November 6, 1993

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

NEW RIVER CROSSING DESIGNED FOR ARTERY

A revised design that places a tunnel underneath the Charles River has emerged as a leading candidate among three alternative plans for the Charles River crossing of the Central Artery project, transportation sources say.

A transportation source also said a decision between the two leading designs may be announced in less than two weeks.

The only other likely choice at this point, officials say, is the plan with no under-river tunnels. Instead, it has 14 bridge lanes on two separate bridges over the river. It carries an estimated cost of just under $1 billion, about $100 million less than the river-tunnel plan. But community groups dislike what they consider the excessive number of elevated-roadway river-crossing lanes and associated on and off ramps.

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DATE: Tuesday, November 16, 1993 Page 1

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr. and Chris Black, Boston Globe Staff

NEW DESIGN SET FOR CHARLES CROSSING; PLAN THAT CONTAINS NO RIVER TUNNEL IS SAID TO COST LESS, TAKE FEWER YEARS

State Transportation Secretary James J. Kerasiotes today will announce a highly controversial all-bridge, no-river-tunnel design for the Charles River crossing of the Central Artery project, sources said yesterday.

At the same time, a transportation source said the cost of the entire Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project is now expected to be $7.7 billion -- $1.3 billion more than the revised estimate announced last spring.

The decision on the Charles River crossing is expected to come as an unhappy surprise to Cambridge and Charlestown critics of the design process for the vehicular crossing, which in 1991 produced the ill-fated ''Scheme Z'' design, with its 16 traffic lanes over the river.

The design chosen by Kerasiotes is cheaper and takes fewer years to build than any of the Scheme Z alternatives under consideration. "It's the least environmentally damaging of the alternatives considered," said one transportation source. "The other alternatives featured river tunnels that raised serious questions about dredging, blasting and construction period impacts to recreation areas."

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DATE: Wednesday, November 17, 1993

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

ALL-BRIDGE PLAN CHEAPEST WAY TO GO, KERASIOTES SAYS

No sooner had the state formally embraced its new solution for the Charles River crossing portion of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project yesterday than critics took aim at its environmental and aesthetic effects.

As expected, Transportation Secretary James J. Kerasiotes ended a two-year process of search and design, telling Boston business executives that an all-bridge configuration, with no tunnel under the Charles, was his choice.

"The under-the-river alternative will take two more years and add $300 million more dollars," Kerasiotes told the business leaders. He asked their support for the state's choice as an alternative to Scheme Z, a complex design that was discarded in 1991. "Two years and $300 million to get incremental benefit, if any, is not a good business decision," he said.

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DATE: Sunday, November 21, 1993

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

DECISION ON RIVER-CROSSING DESIGN SINKS IN

I-93 will go over the Charles River, and the cost of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project will go over $7 billion.

Those were the milestones from a busy week in the transportation community, as transportation secretary James J. Kerasiotes on Tuesday revealed his choice of a river-crossing design to replace the spaghetti-like Scheme Z, which was discarded in 1991.

The consequences of the two-year redesign process, he said, were about $1 billion in increased construction and delay costs. Added to other heretofore unforeseen project expenses, the increased costs raised last spring's $6.6 billion estimate for the whole project to $7.7 billion.

Though it is not perfect, the all-bridge solution improves both Charlestown and Cambridge, said one project manager, who asked not to be identified. "Cambridge -- I don't know what their problem is. … They saw what the city of Boston extorted from the project, and they want to get theirs."

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DATE: Tuesday, June 21, 1994

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

STATE WINS FEDERAL OK TO START RIVER-CROSSING PART OF ARTERY PROJECT

The federal government yesterday waved a green flag for the state to proceed with its preferred design for the Charles River crossing portion of the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel project.

Transportation Secretary James J. Kerasiotes called yesterday's federal approval a critical step in moving the project along. It is at least four years behind schedule, at least two years of that due to the controversy over the Charles River crossing.

Kerasiotes said he expected no further delay as a result of the lawsuits. "We're offering the most environmentally responsible alternative to Scheme Z," he said. The new design has two bridges over the river and two and a half loop ramps on the Cambridge side, compared with Scheme Z's three bridges and six loop ramps. However, the two bridges contain 14 lanes of traffic -- which opponents say will be obtrusive and will include a 10-lane structure that they call the widest bridge in the world.

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DATE: Sunday, March 12, 1995

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

CAMBRIDGE SUES TO HALT BRIDGE PLAN

The city of Cambridge has joined some environmental groups in trying to stop the state from applying its all-bridge, no-river tunnel solution to the controversial Charles River crossing section of the Central Artery project.

After months of unsuccessful negotiations over a package of state assistance to Cambridge worth an estimated $150 million, the city gave up and filed a suit in US District Court in Boston on Friday.

"We had been working to see whether a plan to mitigate the adverse impact could be worked out," Cambridge City Manager Robert W. Healy said yesterday. "We were unsuccessful."

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DATE: Thursday, April 27, 1995

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

INDICTED PARKING LOT OWNER WAS EARLY SCHEME Z FOE

Richard Goldberg, part owner of the Park 'N Fly parking lot in East Boston, maintains he was just exercising his First Amendment rights when he helped bankroll opposition to a complex Charles River bridge design in the Big Dig project in 1990.

He correctly identified the Scheme Z bridge plan, an intrusive, spaghetti-like set of bridges and lanes, as the key point of vulnerability in then-secretary of transportation Frederick P. Salvucci's pet project, the Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel, which did not yet have its environmental permits.

With his recent indictment on federal conspiracy and fraud charges, some aspects of Goldberg's actions in opposing the Big Dig are being scrutinized by federal investigators. On April 7 he was indicted on 34 counts, charges that include allegedly assisting others, including an outspoken Big Dig opponent and a Washington lobbyist, in tax fraud. Goldberg's lawyer, Morris M. Goldings, yesterday called those charges "political."

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DATE: Tuesday, August 5, 1997

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Boston Globe Staff

BIG DIG WINS BATTLE OVER BRIDGE PLANS; JUDGE THROWS OUT SUITS AGAINST STATE

The Big Dig won a big one yesterday.

A federal judge threw out two lawsuits against the project's plan to build two bridges totaling 14 lanes over the Charles River.

Sixteen months after arguments were heard, US District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock ruled that the Massachusetts Highway Department had conformed with federal laws in choosing to build bridges -- not tunnels -- to carry traffic between Boston and Cambridge as part of the Central Artery project.

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