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Sustainable Watertown ceased operations in 2016.
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Welcome to Sustainable Watertown

We are a civic organization committed to improving the quality of life for people who live, work, and learn in Watertown. Our goal is to mobilize our citizens to address our community's challenges, build on our strengths, and to create a healthier, more just and prosperous community. We are working to form coalitions in support of citizen-initiated projects. If your neighborhood or civic group needs town-wide support for an initiative, let us know.

Contact us at to receive updates on our initiatives. We hope you will decide to participate and help us create a more liveable Watertown for the future.

See the plans at: (8MB)
Related documents at:

The Neighborhood Group, Concerned Citizens Group (CCG) report:

March 6, 2014

RE: 33 Mt Auburn St proposal (R. Bray)
TO: Steven Magoon & Gideon Schreiber, Watertown Planning Department, and Watertown Planning Board and Watertown Zoning Board of Appeals
FROM: Concerned Citizens Group, Inc. (Lisa Feltner, Pres.)

CCG is disappointed that the current 33 Mt Auburn proposal does not meet some of the goals stated in the draft Comprehensive Plan, although we think residences may contribute to revitalization; please consider:

Central Business District goals defined in the Comprehensive Plan include:
*Are places like Watertown Square (and Coolidge Square) destinations that people would like to visit?
*New commercial growth should be concentrated: Arsenal St 60%, in the Square 22% (in order to increase the tax base)
*Does it fit with existing environment?
*Does it promote Watertown Square history and/or culture?
*Does it celebrate Watertown Square as a destination?
*Does this enhance the streetscape and is it a successful proposal for mixed use?

And including these objectives from the Zoning, Watertown Square Design Overlay District, Section 5.09:
(2) To improve the appearance of the Watertown Square area over time and to create a more competitive shopping environment.

There is not much space dedicated to retail and this level is cut up and not flexible, which makes it less attractive or well-suited to a variety of businesses, and therefore less successful as mixed use.

(3) To maintain and enhance the scale and quality of Watertown Square's architectural environment including the Square's existing older buildings and any proposed new construction.

It is imperative that the current project showcase much better materials, such as quality brick, in order to fit the existing environment, especially given its lack of architectural identity. We anticipate a level of success in enhancing the streetscape through the use of more and larger windows, glass and even steel instead of cement fiberboard and fabric awnings.

---- Some other concerns--------
1. The garage door looks too prominent and not inviting from pedestrian view;
2. We like the larger windows, more windows, including on the elevator shaft area instead of blank space;
3. We like having an entrance from the park side to 33 Mt Auburn;
4. Does the large "z" across the front ground level really work on this bldg? It seems to cut up this area into a busy visual.
5. We are happy to see condos including 2-BRs instead of rental units;
6. Could you please show the community path on your plans (either sidewalk + 1 bike lane, or 2-way bike;
7. The landscaping looks wonderful; can the “park” be named/identified, perhaps will a small sign or plaque?

Please add a water fountain to this area.

A note concerning Planning Budget: we support dedicated funds for improving Baptist Walk, and its connection over Mt Auburn to Taylor St.

The first public hearing about off-leash dog park will be held by the Council Subcommittee on Public Works, Tuesday Feb 4 at 7pm., in the Town Hall

Subcommittee Councilors are Cecilia Lenk, Chair, Steve Corbett, and Tony Palomba. If you cannot attend, please contact them via phone or email.


What is your vision for the Town’s future?
What do you enjoy most about Watertown?
What are the Town’s biggest challenges?
What can be done to enhance the Charles River waterfront?
What are the key land use issues along Arsenal, Mt. Auburn, Galen, Main and Pleasant streets?
What should be the focus for Watertown Square and Coolidge Square?

For more information contact Steve Magoon ( or Gideon Schreiber ( at 617.972.6417

Baby Boomers across the US are making decisions about how and where they want to live the next stage of their lives. Rather than moving to retirement communities or to another part of the country to be close to their children, most want to stay in their homes and be active in their communities. People in many communities across the country are joining together to create local non-profit organizations called "Villages" that provide the service and support systems to make this happen.

A group of Watertown residents have gotten together to develop a "Village" in Watertown. The goal is to create an organization that would help Watertown residents support one another in getting help when they need it, share their skills and interests, and promote community.

To learn about WatertownTogether and the Village movement, visit

WISE LogoComplete a no cost home energy assessment before June 1st and you could win $100 in gift cards to over forty Watertown Local First independent businesses! The Watertown Environment and Energy Efficiency Commttee has launched the Watertown Initiative to Save Energy (WISE) with local energy efficiency leader Next Step Living to help Watertown residents save money on their energy bills and reduce their carbon footprint. They've teamed up with Watertown Local First to get the word out and encourage people to shop locally, too. Save money, reduce your CO2 emissions, and support our local economy. One in twenty people win! To learn more and sign up, go to


Sustainable Watertown Supports Dog Park at Fillipello by Barbara Ruskin

From Conservation Commission hearing on October 3, 2012

The Dog Park Task Force, a part of Sustainable Watertown, is working to support the creation of an off-leash dog park here. It would be a fine example of a sustainable addition to the vitality, character, and quality of life in Watertown.

Off-leash dog parks have been very successful in surrounding towns and across the nation. The responsible departments in Cambridge and Arlington have given us encouragement and a lot of information and feel that their dog parks have been a great addition. Dog officers believe that dog parks make their jobs easier.

There are all kinds of dog parks, from a simple circle 30' in diameter with a fence and a gate. There are giant ones as well--the Disney of dog parks is said to be in Somerville. Some have benches with cover for owners. One has a time-out space for naughty dogs. The best have a water spigot, doggie bags, posted rules, and a trash can. They can be grassy, or pea stone which seems to be the long term surface of choice with, or without trees for shade.


Changes in recreation use will be made at Filipello Park because the recycling center (temporarily on a basketball court there) is moving. This is the great opportunity for us to recommend now that Watertown's first Off-Leash Dog Park be designated by the Town for the unused, large, grassy, fenced in area on Grove Street at the entrance to Filipello Park.

Please email the Director of the Department of Recreation, Peter Centola (, the Town Manager, Michael Driscoll (, and Town Council members ( stating your choice of the Grove Street area of Filipello Park for the Dog Park. Don't forget your address. You may name your own Council member, but please ask that copies of your note be sent to all Councilors. Let us know if you get any replies at
Stay tuned for the next Dog Park Task Force meeting where we will talk and strategize about upcoming events. More information about the Dog Park Task Force will be posted on the website in the next week.


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