Close to 6,900 residents cast ballots in this year’s participatory budget voting, directing $925,000 to six projects: Trees, Please!; Water Fountains in Every Park; Protect the Health and Safety of our Firefighters; Smoother Cycling; Clean Up Cambridge; and Rain Gardens for Resiliency.
Trees, Please! will plant 100 trees in the city’s heat islands—”spaces that have high ambient air temperature, which can be especially uncomfortable for people to visit or live in,” according to the participatory budgeting website—and will cost $200,000.
Water Fountains in Every Park ($90,000) will install bottle fillers and water fountains in nine city parks.
Protect the Health and Safety of Our Firefighters will use $110,000 to buy gear drying units and wireless headsets for firefighters.
Smoother Cycling will dedicate $250,000 to repaving several bike lanes throughout the city.
Clean Up Cambridge ($125,000) will involve upgrading trash and recycling bins.
Rain Gardens for Resiliency will use $150,000 to add rain gardens to Chestnut Street, Webster Avenue, and the intersection of Huron Avenue and Cushing Street.
Participatory Budget projects are one-time capital projects that community members select to improve the city. Examples of past projects include bilingual books to help children learn English, solar panels for the library, and a public bathroom in Central Square.
This year’s winning projects were culled from a list of 20 finalists.