Somerville, Mass., hoping to recover money it put up to save Green Line Extension project

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
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Somerville officials hope to get money back now that the Green Line Extension project is healthy.
MBTA

Back in 2016 it was called “an extreme and unprecedented arrangement for a state infrastructure project.” Today, however, the city of Somerville, Mass., might be getting its money back.

Five years ago Somerville and Cambridge committed $50 million and $25 million, respectively, to keep the Green Line Extension project on its feet. Cost overruns almost killed the project, but for Somerville and Cambridge it was too big to fail. Cambridge City Manager Richard Rossi and Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone said even though their cities were not to blame for the cost overruns, the line was important enough to try to save. They called the situation, “an extreme and unprecedented arrangement for a state infrastructure project.”

The Green Line Extension project is currently in good shape, with stations set to open later this year. With the project doing so well Curtatone is now trying to get Somerville’s $50 million commitment back. Somerville has borrowed $30 million on a short-term basis and is hoping to get the money back with any interest that has been paid out. There also is $7.1 million in the city’s green line stabilization fund, and that money could be used for other capital projects.

Cambridge, which has contributed $15 million to the Green Line Extension project, is not asking for any money back.

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