Senator Joan B. Lovely
State Senator
2nd Essex District


October 15, 2018

Update Regarding Waters River Bridge Cemetery Access Road Project

(Peabody/Boston) Peabody Mayor Ted Bettencourt, along with Peabody’s state legislative delegation, Senator Joan B. Lovely and Representatives Thomas P. Walsh and Theodore C. Speliotis, applaud the decision of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver to remove “the cemetery local road access from our permitting process” relative to the Route 128/Waters River Bridge Project. Currently, the entrance to the B’Nai B’rith Cemetery is located on the northbound side of Route 128 between the exits for Route 114 in Peabody and Endicott Street in Danvers.

As part of the proposed bridge reconstruction and installation of sound barriers, MassDOT had originally proposed eliminating the existing entrance and constructing an entrance on Sabino Farm Road in the Esquire Drive neighborhood. The entrance proposal has now been eliminated form MassDOT’s plans in order to move forward on the bridge reconstruction.

“Government works best when it carefully considers input from constituents,” said Senator Joan B. Lovely (D-Salem). “I want to thank Rep. Walsh for his determined leadership on this issue, MassDOT for working with the Peabody delegation, and the neighborhood residents for conveying their concerns on this road-safety issue in such a convincing fashion.”

State Representative Thomas P. Walsh (D-Peabody) also credited the neighbors of the Esquire Drive neighborhood for their persistence in making known their concerns and thanked the MassDOT team for its willingness to listen. “This has been a great example of elected officials and residents working in unison to realize an outcome that is in the best interest of the neighborhood, as well as the motoring public. Officials at MassDOT were willing to hear our arguments and ultimately realized that the relocation of the entrance could in fact be more dangerous than the current configuration. For that I thank the entire project team.”

“Mayor Bettencourt, Senator Lovely, and Representative Walsh did a great job representing the neighborhood,” said State Representative Ted Speliotis (D-Danvers). “MassDOT responded in kind by recognizing the impact they would be making on the residents.”