Detour: Road Work to Impact Belmont Center for Week

Photo: Big machines taking apart the Concord Avenue roadway. 

For the remainder of the week – which includes the first day of school and the beginning of the Labor Day getaway – Belmont Center will be a good place to actively avoid.

Beginning Monday Aug. 31 and lasting until Friday, Sept. 4, General Contractor Charles Contracting will begin road pulverization and full-depth reconstruction for

  • a portion of Concord Avenue, westbound  between the Leonard Street and the Belmont Police headquarters on Pleasant Street, and
  • along Leonard Street from Alexander Avenue southbound towards the underpass. 

During construction, the roadways will be closed between 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Detours around the work site will be in effect at these times.  After 4 p.m., typical traffic flow will be restored and the road will be made passable.

For any questions or concerns about the project please contact Robert Bosselman, resident engineer in the Belmont Office of Community Development, at 617-993-2657.

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Cushing Square Municipal Lot Closing for Good in Fortnight

Photo: The municipal lot in Cushing Square. 

A long-time landmark in parking scarce Cushing Square will soon disappear as Belmont Police announced Monday, Aug. 31, the closing of the municipal parking lot adjacent to Trapelo and Williston roads.

The lot, which serves neighborhood businesses, shoppers, overnight parking and commuters, will shut down in the next two weeks, said the release.

Police note that 50 underground spaces reserved for municipal use will be available to the public when the project nears completion in 18 months. 

The closure is due to the start of construction of the Cushing Village construction project, the long-delayed 167,000 sq.-ft. multi-use development that will occupy the lot, the location of the former S. S. Pierce store building at the intersection of Common Street and Trapelo Road and the former CVS site at Common and Belmont Street. 

After the lot is closed, area businesses that purchased town-issued monthly parking passes in the lot “will be allowed to park in the Cushing Square area free from time restrictions on parking with the exception of the following roads: Trapelo and Horne roads and Common Street. 

Belmont Police will work closely with businesses and residents to minimize the impact of an increase in vehicles in the surrounding neighborhoods. The department will rely on a similar plan in place during the reconstruction of the municipal lot in Waverley Square last year. 

Questions can be directed to Belmont Police Traffic Sgt. Ben Mailhot at 617-993-2538.  

This Week: First Day of School Wednesday! Mad Science and Ice Cream Friday

Photo: A bit of mad science at the Beech Friday.

On the government side of “This Week.”

  • Board of Selectmen will hold one of its shortest public meetings in years on Monday, Aug. 31 at 6 p.m. before heading into executive session.
  • Temporary Net Metering Working Advisory Committee will be dotting i’s and crossing t’s as it finalizes its report to the Belmont Light Board on Monday, Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m. 
  • Belmont Board of Health is meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 2 at Town Hall.

• Pre-School Summer Story Time at the Benton Library, Belmont’s independent and volunteer run library, on Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 10:30 a.m. Stories and crafts for children age 3 to 5. Parents or caregivers must attend. Siblings can join with adults. Registration is not required. The Benton Library is located at the intersection of Oakley and Old Middlesex.

• Come out to Harris Field at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 1 to watch the Belmont High Boys Soccer team scrimmage against Wayland.

• The Belmont High School PTO is meeting for the first time this school year on Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. in the Flett Room.

• Everyone is invited to Chinese Storytime which will take place in the Assembly Room of the Belmont Public Library from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. 0n Tuesday, Sept. 1.

• The first day of the 2015-16 Belmont School Year is Wednesday, Sept. 2, for 1st through 12th graders. 

Sustainable Belmont is meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 2 at 7 p.m. in the Flett Room of the Belmont Public Library.

• A strong Belmont Girls Swimming team, runners-up in the past two state Division 2 championships, will scrimmage Division 1 powerhouse Chelmsford High at the Higgenbottom at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 2.

• Want to see the Belmont High’s new basketball/volleyball court in action? Belmont Volleyball will scrimmage Wayland in the (unairconditioned) Wenner Field House at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 3.

• The Beech Street Center is holding an Ice Cream Social & Mad Science Extravaganza beginning at 1:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 4.

  • 1:30 p.m.: Ice Cream Social with ice cream from Rancatore’s.
  • 2:30 p.m.: Mad Science® of Greater Boston science show for children of all ages.

Bring the kids for this intergenerational fun event.

• The Benton Library, Belmont’s independent library, is open on the first Friday evening of every month. On Friday, Sept. 4, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., come by the Benton on the way home or after dinner. Get a free library card if you don’t have one already. Explore the collection. Select some of our gently used sale books; all proceeds benefit the library.

Belmont Yard Sales, Aug. 29-30

Photo: Yard sale in Belmont.

Yard sales in the “Town of Homes.”

• Belmont Street at Oakley Road; Saturday, Aug. 29, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

• 19 Bradley Rd., Saturday, Aug. 29,  9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

• 19 Burnham St., Sunday, Aug. 30, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• 72 Chester Rd., Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 29 and 30, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• 165 Clifton St., Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 29 and 30, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• 77-79 Fairview Ave., Saturday, Aug. 29,  9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• 129 Waverley St., Saturday, Aug. 29, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• 16 Unity Ave., Saturday, Aug. 29,  9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sold in Belmont: Easy as Ones, Twos and a Three

Photo: A split-level ranch in the Winn Brook neighborhood sold for nearly 12 percent of its original list price.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes.”

9-11 Sabina Way. Two-family (1923). Sold: $880,000. Listed at $825,000. Living area: 2,520 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 63 days.

218-220 Blanchard Rd. Multi-family (1952). Sold: $900,000. Listed at $849,000. Living area: 2,520 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3.5 baths. On the market: 42 days.

63 Country Club Ln. New construction (2014). Sold: $2,050,000. Listed at $2,475,000. Living area: 4,824 sq.-ft. 12 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths. On the market: 225 days.

14-16 Vincent Ave. Multi-family (1910). Sold: $860,000. Listed at $895,000. Living area: 3,090 sq.-ft. 15 rooms, 6 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 70 days.

65 Marlboro St. Three-family (1900). Sold: $875,000. Listed at $849,000. Living area: 3,216 sq.-ft. 14 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 42 days. 

199 Beech St., #2. Walk-up condominium (1924). Sold: $391,000. Listed at $429,000. Living area: 868 sq.-ft. 4 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 baths. On the market: 106 days.

115 Lexington St. Colonial (1925). Sold: $625,000. Listed at $699,000. Living area: 1,682 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths. On the market: 139 days.

55 Sherman St. Split-level ranch (1955). Sold: $907,000. Listed at $799,000. Living area: 1,840 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 139 days.

306 Orchard St., #2. Condominium (1900). Sold: $455,000. Listed at $435,000. Living area: 1,525 sq.-ft. 6 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 70 days.

I think it comes as a surprise to many people when they discover that Belmont’s housing stock is far from being a homogeneous collection of Colonials and brick mansions. 

Unlike outlying surburban locations such as Wilmington where 93 percent of the housing stock is the typical single-family house, just under half (45 percent) of Belmont’s 9,600 residential structures are detached homes, with an almost equal number being multifamilies.

This past week, more than half of the sales in the “Town of Homes” were multifamilies including one three-unit building or a condo in a two or greater unit building. It appears the market for multis is healthy as all but one of the buildings sold for more than its list price. 

On the single-family side of the week, the owners of the split-level on Sherman Street stuck to their guns (leaving their house on the market for nearly four months) and saw a nice bump of nearly 12 percent from their list price. Twenty years ago, the term split-level was a deal breaker for many buyers as the style was considered old-fashion and the structures cheaply constructed. Not now.

Tomatoes and Cupcakes Headline Market Day in Belmont

Photo: Tomatoes at their peak. 

The best time of the year to enjoy ripe tomatoes is now. Market Day in Belmont this Thursday, Aug. 27, features late August harvest that includes blueberries, cantaloupe, corn, eggplants, peaches, peas, peppers, raspberries, summer squash, watermelon and many variations of tomatoes. 

This week’s tasting is by Yum Bunnies Cakery. Located at 241 Belmont St., Yum Bunnies offers custom cakes and cupcakes: You choose your cake flavor and filling. Voted “BEST Birthday Cakes” for two years running by the Boston AList, the cakery reminds you to “Eat your cake & have it be cute too!” 

The Belmont Farmers Market is open from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Thursdays throughout the summer until the final week of October. The market is located in the municipal parking lot at the intersection of Cross Street and Channing Road in Belmont Center.
Schedule of Events
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Tasting by Yum Bunnies Cakery
  • 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.: Belmont Public “Pop-up” Library
  • 4 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.: Storytime by the Library
  • 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Music by the Sandy Ridge Boys
Monthly and occasional vendors at the market this week are:  
Carlisle Honey, Fille de Ferme Jams, Turtle Creek Winery, Underwood Greenhouses.
Weekly Vendors: 
Boston Smoked Fish Co., C&C Lobsters and Fish, Dick’s Market Garden Farm, Fior D’Italia, Flats Mentor Farm, Foxboro Cheese Co., Gaouette Farm, Goodies Homemade, Hutchins Farm, Kimball Fruit Farm, Mamadou’s Artisan Bakery, Nicewicz Family Farm, Sfolia Baking Company, Stillman Quality Meats.
Food Truck in the Belmont Center Parking Lot

Jamaica Mi Hungry 

Marauders in the Middle: Second Year of Chenery Football Underway

Photo: Head Coach James MacIsaac with some of the players at Chenery Middle School.

The grass on the Chenery Middle School playing field was green and freshly mowed on Monday, Aug. 24, greeting 40 7th and 8th graders who “are going to learn football,” said James MacIsaac, the head coach of the Chenery Middle School team.


While the squad is a member of the Eastern Middlesex Middle School Football League, “I like to think of this as a 12-week football camp,” said MacIsaac who is running the program for the second year.

“It’s a great league because we don’t have playoffs or championships; it’s all about learning the game, being drilled in the fundamentals,” said MacIsaac, who is also Belmont’s assistant police chief.

Now in its second year after being dormant for nearly four decades, all but three of last year’s 7th graders have returned, “which says a lot about how we treat the players and how much they enjoy being part of this team,” said MacIsaac, a lifelong resident, as he put the players through their paces around the field.

The team will have three home games scheduled including one at Belmont High School’s Harris Field “which will be special. They love playing there, with the turf field and stands filled. It’s great fun.”

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Residents Meet Belmont at Annual Get-together

Photo: Ellen Triantafellow registering to vote with the help of Town Clerk Ellen Cushman. 

Several hundred residents – from pre-teens to the elderly, newcomers and long-time homeowners, families and singles – gathered in the Chenery Middle School’s auditorium Tuesday, Aug. 26, to meet their town.

For the 13th year, Meet Belmont, the annual community information fair sponsored by the town’s Vision 21 Implementation Committee, allowed Belmontians to connect with their town departments, local government, schools, recreation and arts programs and town-wide organizations and activities.

Ellen Triantafellow and her husband moved recently from Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood to Belmont and registered to vote at the Town Clerk’s desk near the entrance to the cafeteria. 

“This is a great resource and an opportunity to meet all the folks in the town and what’s available in town,” she said, before taking a mail-in registration form from Town Clerk Ellen Cushman. 

For Phil Hughes of the Belmont Historical Society, Meet Belmont allows the organization “to introduce ourselves to new members of the Belmont community and introduce them to our newsletters, our programs  and the fact that we have a home in the library.”

 “It always has been a great event,” said Hughes, as a large contingency of families with young children came wandering through the hall.

Beginning a decade and a half ago as part of the aspirational goals set forth in the Working Vision for Belmont’s Future adopted by the town in April 2001, which included a provision “to be welcoming to newcomers.” 

In its inaugural year, there were 20 exhibitors and 40 residents who showed up, recalled Jennifer Page, who with Sara Oaklander who coordinated the event.

“Now, as you can see, it’s taken off and is growing each year,” said Page. 

Circling the room, a constant buzz rose from the floor as old friends and newbies discussed clubs and town government, beginning or continuing relationships as they went table to table to pick up pamphlets and calendars from groups they’ve never knew existed in Belmont. 

This is a fantastic event, especially for young, new families, so they can be part of the community when they get here,” said George Durante, the chair of the Vision 21 Committee, who worked the door of the event, taking down names and getting feedback. 

Registration Now Open for Scharfman Memorial Run

Photo: A scene from last year’s Dan Scharfman road race.

Runners and residents can now register for the Foundation for Belmont Educations third annual Dan Scharfman Memorial Run being held on Sunday, Oct. 4 at 9:30 a.m. at Belmont High School’s Harris Field, 221 Concord Ave.

What is now a fall staple on the road running calendar, this family-friendly event offers a 5k and a 2k course that takes runners through a scenic route past many of the town’s schools as well as the Payson Park Reservoir and Clay Pit Pond. Awards follow each race’s end, including prizes for children of all ages.

The race is held in memorial of Dan Scharfman, a Belmont School Committee member, long-time runner and a dedicated advocate of technology and innovation in education. Last year, more than 500 runners raised $25,000 for the Dan Scharfman Education Innovation Fund in support of the FBE’s Innovative Teaching Initiative, a multi-year, $450,000 program providing teachers with the training resources that support math, science and reading instruction.

Registration for the USATF-certified and sanctioned event is available through the FBE website:

Contact: Amanda Theodoropulos, Foundation for Belmont Education, or call 617-947-4633.


Got a Project? Need Funding? The CPA Could Be Your Answer

Photo: The Underwood Pool, finance in part with a grant from the Community Preservation Committee.

Do you or your community group have a great idea for a town-wide project but can’t think how to pay for it?

If that’s the case, your answer could be in applying for the fourth-round of funding from the town’s Community Preservation Committee.

According to Town Treasurer and CPC member Floyd Carman, the committee will have approximately $1.2 million to distribute to organizations or town agencies in the fiscal year 2017, beginning July 1, 2016.

“It’s roughly the same amount as last year,” said Carman after the committee’s monthly meeting on Aug. 12.

Using money from a 1.5 percent surcharge on property taxes and state contributions, the CPC supports a broad range of proposals involving:

  • acquiring or improving open space and recreation land,
  • rehabbing or preserving historic sites, and
  • promoting community housing.

In the past, the CPC has provided funds for the new Underwood Pool, restoring the Pequossette Park tennis courts, first-time homebuyer’s assistance and the electrical upgrade of town-owned housing.

Individuals and groups interested in learning more about the process can attend a public meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 17, at Town Hall where the committee will answer questions and review the extensive process in which projects are evaluated.

Preliminary applications are due on Oct. 4 and final applications are expected on Dec. 4. The CPC will make its final decision on applications on Jan. 15, 2016. The accepted application will then go before the annual Town Meeting in April for final approval.

The new CPA applications are available on the Town of Belmont’s website.

For more information, contact the Community Preservation Hotline at 617-993-2774 or Michael Trainor at