How Would You Spend $800,000 to Improve Cambridge? Vote Dec. 2-8

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Participatory Budgeting (PB) is back!  Cambridge residents age 12 or older can vote from Dec. 2-8, on how to spend $800,000 on projects to improve the city. This process is open to everyone in our community, including non-U.S. citizens and university students.

In June and July 2017, community members submitted 608 ideas about how to spend $800,000 of the city’s FY19 Capital Budget.  From August to November, over 50 volunteer Budget Delegates worked on five committees to research and evaluate those ideas and develop final proposals for the ballot.  Thanks to our dedicated Budget Delegates, there are 20 exciting projects on the 2017 PB Ballot.  Residents can vote for up to five of the following projects:

  1. Drinking Water Across More Parks ($100,000)
  2. Benches for a Walkable City ($25,000)
  3. Enhancements to the Central Square Library ($72,500)
  4. Critical Resource Kits for the Homeless ($50,000)
  5. New Musical Instruments for CRLS ($200,000)
  6. Upgrade the Gately Youth Center ($100,000)
  7. Public WiFi for Inman Square and Russell Field ($20,000)
  8. Urban Bicycle Wash Stations ($20,000)
  9. Sheltered Bike Parking at the Main Library ($90,000)
  10. Flashing Crosswalks for Safer Streets ($176,000)
  11. Digital Bike Counters with Open Data ($90,000)
  12. Bicycle Safety for Cambridge Youth ($95,000)
  13. Make Our Playgrounds Fun for All Ages & Abilities ($200,000)
  14. Making Danehy Friendlier and Healthier ($140,000)
  15. Murals to Inspire Cambridge Youth ($75,000)
  16. Interactive Conversation Benches ($60,000)
  17. Drive on Superpower: Electric Vehicle Charging ($165,000)
  18. Jade Chain: Living Moss Walls to Combat Pollution ($100,000)
  19. 100 Trees for a Cleaner, Greener Cambridge ($141,000)
  20. Smarter Cleanup for a Smart City ($80,000)

Residents can vote online at Online voting will be text message authenticated. Voters will enter their cell phone number on the PB website and a code will be sent to them via text; they will enter that code online for one-time access to the ballot.  If residents wish to vote online but do not have a cell phone, they can email or call the City’s Budget Office to receive a code.  The online ballot will be available in English, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, and Spanish.

Residents can also vote in person at one of the following PB voting events:

  • Boudreau Library (245 Concord Avenue): Tuesday 12/5 from 4-7 p.m.
  • CambridgeSide Galleria Food Court (100 CambridgeSide Place): Thursday 12/7 from 4-8 p.m.
  • Central Square Library (45 Pearl Street): Tuesday 12/5 from 5-8 p.m.
  • City Hall (795 Mass. Ave.): Monday 12/4 from 4-8 p.m.; Wednesday 12/6 from 10 a.m. -2 p.m.; Friday 12/8 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
  • Citywide Senior Center (806 Mass. Ave.): Thursday 12/7 from 12-2 p.m.
  • Collins Library (64 Aberdeen Avenue): Thursday 12/7 from 4-7 p.m.
  • The Garage in Harvard Square (36 JFK Street): Friday 12/8 from 5-8 p.m.
  • Jefferson Park (266 Rindge Avenue): Tuesday 12/5 from 4-6:30 p.m.
  • Just-A-Start Housing at 243 Broadway (243 Broadway): Monday 12/4 from 3-5 p.m.
  • Main Library (449 Broadway): Sunday 12/3 from 2-5 p.m.
  • Millers River Farmers Market (15 Lambert Street): Wednesday 12/6 from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • North Cambridge Senior Center (2050 Mass. Avenue): Monday 12/4 from 12-2 p.m.
  • O’Neill Library (70 Rindge Avenue): Monday 12/4 from 5-8 p.m.
  • Roosevelt Towers (14 Roosevelt Towers): Wednesday 12/6 from 5-7:30 p.m.

Paper ballots at voting events will be available in English, Amharic, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Spanish.

Past winning PB projects include a public toilet in Central Square, water bottle fill stations, a freezer van for prepared food rescue, bicycle repair stations, bilingual books for kids, and many others.  See you at the PB polls December 2-8!

For more information, including a full list of in-person PB voting events, please visit or contact the City of Cambridge Budget Office at or (617) 349-4270.   

Page was last modified on 5/8/2018 6:56 PM
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