South Boston Neighborhood Association Halts Construction of Sewer Overflow Facility

South Boston Neighborhood Association Halts Construction of Sewer Overflow Facility

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Hale and Dorr recently represented a South Boston neighborhood association which opposed the location of a new sewer overflow facility in a dense residential neighborhood across the street from an existing park and playground.

When the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) selected the site over neighborhood objections, we filed suit in Suffolk Superior Court alleging violations of the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act for failure to adequately consider alternative sites. (The neighborhood prefers a site on Massport land further from residential streets.) We also helped convince the South Boston legislative delegation to oppose legislation that would have been necessary to convert the proposed site to use as a sewer facility.

After extensive negotiations involving the United States Attorney, Environmental Protection Agency, MWRA, Massport, our client, harbor organizations and South Boston political leaders, MWRA has filed a notice of project change which announced an intention to reconsider other proposed sites. Consequently, the litigation which we filed has been stayed by agreement of the parties, pending MWRA’s reconsideration process.

The lawyers involved with this case included Richard Johnston and Mark Kalpin.