Climate Ready Dorchester plans open house discussion

The city of Boston will launch its Climate Ready Dorchester (CRD) initiative this month with an open house at the Leahy-Holloran Community Center on Worrell Street in Neponset. Climate Ready Boston (CRB) and The Project Team will convene the meeting on Wed., Sept. 25, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

This event will be one of two public meetings held by the city to try to engage residents, community organizations, business owners, city and state agencies, and stakeholders to help identify risks and create solutions for what looms as a climate-change crisis. 

Organizers will call for community input and feedback throughout their design process, hoping to incorporate CRD into ongoing city and neighborhood sustainability efforts. 

In July, after a trip to the nation’s capital with Gov. Charlie Baker, Mayor Martin Walsh addressed the Dorchester Board of Trade on the subject of infrastructure and climate resilience.

“We’ve talked a lot about quality of life issues in the neighborhood, but the Dorchester waterfront is also part of our community,” the mayor said.

“We’re seeing roads flood more often than before. We’re seeing flooding happening all over the city of Boston. We’ve seen flooding on Morrissey Boulevard for many years. It’s not new, but as we think about and expect another 40 inches or so [of sea level rise] by 2070, it’s gonna get much worse.”

CRD aims to enhance the ability of coastal Dorchester’s neighborhoods to combat the challenges associated with climate change, in particular the flooding on Morrissey Boulevard, on the MBTA Red Line, and on sections of I-93. CRB has noted that by 2030, experts project 9 inches of sea level rise. They expect the rise to reach 40 inches by 2070.

It’s unclear exactly when the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s plan to redesign Morrissey Blvd., which was stalled in 2017, will be re-launched. “The DCR recognizes the importance Morrissey Blvd. has on the region and continues to work toward the redesign and reconstruction of the parkway,” Director of Communications for Troy Wall said. “While the agency does not have new information at this time, the DCR anticipates future public engagement later in the process.”