There has been a real cost: residents of Somerville have seen friends and family die of lung cancer at significantly higher rates than suburban dwellers who use I-93 for their commute.
Neighborhood opposition to the project was strong in the 1960s and as the area evolved the pollution did not.
Now, Tufts, activists and City Hall have been awarded a $750,000 federal grant from Housing and Urban Development.
The academic-citizen and political partnership is encouraging: Somerville needs all its resources to overcome a 188-mile long foe like I-93. Those resources must move beyond academic study, however, and begin to solve the environmental issues we face.
With a so-called green economy booming, there are opportunities out there. Here's hoping Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone, Tufts University and exceptional community groups such as STEP can seize the moment and offer some relief to Somerville families living in dangerous conditions.