Boston MA Mass and Cass update today – NECN

With plans for a substance abuse treatment center on Boston Harbor’s Long Island still years from becoming a reality, city leaders are expected to announce more immediate efforts to ease the ongoing crisis at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Melnea Cass Boulevard.

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, Police Commissioner Michael Cox, Suffolk County District Attorney Kevin Hayden and several others will hold a 10 a.m. news conference to discuss the city’s response to the “substance use disorder, mental health, and unsheltered homelessness crises centered” at Mass. and Cass.

Boston is moving to reopen a drug treatment facility and rebuild the bridge leading to Long Island.

The topic has been under the microscope lately — between growing concerns over the situation at the South End intersection, as well as Wu’s adamant push to move forward with plans to rebuild the Long Island Bridge and treatment center that were once there.

Wu hopes to have a 3,300-foot bridge to Long Island reopened within four years, and then begin offering services on the island as soon as the bridge is done. There are still two final reviews facing the bridge project, but Wu said that  the city has already set aside $38 million to rehabilitate the existing buildings on the island and an additional $81 million for rebuilding the bridge.

The bridge was closed in 2014 over safety concerns, resulting in the closure of the treatment center on the island.

Officials are holding a news conference at 2:45 p.m. Wednesday.

Violence has been on the rise in the Mass. and Cass area, though, with the area becoming dangerous enough that even outreach workers are not feeling comfortable anymore.

Sue Sullivan, the executive director of the Newmarket Business Improvement District, which works to improve the quality of life in the area, said recently that it’s become a more violent crowd, with gangs and guns taking over the problematic streets.

“It’s anarchy,” said Sullivan. “We need to stop the open air drug trade and clear the tents again.”

You can watch a livestream of Friday’s news conference on this story at 10 a.m.

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