Editorial: A week’s worth of fireworks in Worcester

Worcester just enjoyed a week of dazzlers — and that’s not even counting Friday’s Independence Day fireworks display.

The succession of positive news flashes runs the gamut, and in some cases calls for patience or for optimism tempered by caution. But in the glow of a holiday stretch and with summer just getting started, we might as well sit back and enjoy it.

In terms of practicality and overall impact, the Central Building at 332 Main St. may be the biggest cause for celebration in Worcester’s good-news week.

Until a couple of years ago, the former office building had been on the demolition list. On Wednesday, the state announced that it will help redevelop it for housing. Of 55 apartments planned, 14 will be “workforce housing,” meaning they will go to people who have jobs but still can’t afford market-rate rents.

Inbox [July 2-8]: News and notes from Zipcar, South High, Armory Business Center, Worcester Public Library, WPS, POW! WOW! Worcester

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

Zipcar launches in Worcester

Zipcar, the world’s leading car-sharing network, announced a partnership with the city of Worcester to bring its “wheels when you want them” membership service to area residents, businesses, visitors and students.

Six Zipcars are available for reservation by the hour or by the day in easily accessible locations downtown. The vehicles are parked in designated spots for convenient pickup and drop-off and can be reserved on Zipcar’s mobile app, online or over the phone.

The Zipcar Worcester fleet features a variety of makes and models. Each reservation includes gas, insurance and 180 miles of driving per day.

“We’re excited to bring Zipcar to Worcester as part of the city’s growing transportation network,” said Chris Moulding, Zipcar regional community marketing manager.

Last week’s most popular, June 18-24

Here are the most popular Worcester Sun articles June 18-24

Nothing usual about The Chameleon opening on Shrewsbury Street
Mariano: Thought police take over the Citizen Advisory Council
Editorial: Leadership fails test over candidate’s Turtleboy tie
Worcester 2.0: An outsider’s inside look at the city’s developing future
For George’s Bakery, bread is where the heart is
No child’s play: Simon Says Give Worcester chapter packs a serious charitable punch

Inbox [June 28]: News and notes from Worcester Regional Airport, city of Worcester, Anna Maria and Worcester Public Library

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

Airport gains Worcester-Cape Cod flights

Rectrix Aviation announced the launch of a Worcester-to-Hyannis passenger flight with a ribbon cutting at Worcester Regional Airport.

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Massport CEO Thomas Glynn and Rectrix CEO Richard Cawley were on hand to mark the expansion of the Rectrix Cape Cod shuttle. They were joined by Worcester Airport Director Andy Davis, Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis and Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Timothy P. Murray.

The shuttle service debuts tomorrow afternoon with the maiden flight arriving in Worcester at approximately 3:30 p.m. with Boston Bruins legend Bobby Orr as its first passenger.

Editorial: Leadership fails test over candidate’s Turtleboy tie

Everything was going fine at the staid Citizen Advisory Council (CAC) meeting June 8 until — 2 hours and 22 minutes in — it came time to vote on the lady who writes limericks.

Margaret Melican does much more than that, of course. As a longtime lawyer she brought serious credentials as a Zoning Board of Appeals aspirant. During her interview that night she was personable, professional and spoke of her love for her city.

It didn’t seem as if anything ominous was coming. As for the interviews that had come before her, the theme was willingness and ability to serve the city. The CAC, charged with recruiting and interviewing applicants for vacant positions on Worcester boards and commissions, almost always OKs candidates to move on for consideration by the city manager, which is the final decision-making step.

But nothing’s a lock — especially not if you’ve written limericks in the comment sections of a controversial local blog, and are subjected to interview questioning that crosses a line.

Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 171]: Worcester budget writers are a cut above

The city’s spending plan for fiscal 2018 comes with a healthy bottom line of about $632 million, some $13 million more than last year.

That, of course, after those intrepid souls on the City Council bravely hacked a whopping $622,112 from the city manager’s original proposal. While a large majority of the new spending will go to schools, many observers decried the lack of scrutiny on how their tax dollars are spent.

Hitch takes a little off the top to get to the bottom of this.

Inbox [June 4]: News and notes from city of Worcester, EPA, Bravehearts and Worcester State, WPI and Holy Cross

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

Augustus, Petty vow to continue battling climate change

Worcester Mayor Joseph M. Petty and City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. reaffirmed Worcester’s commitment to battle climate change locally, continue investing in green technology and maintain the city’s place as a leader in clean energy.

Topix.com

Mayor Petty

In the wake of the announcement that the federal government would back out of the Paris Climate Agreement, Petty will join more than 80 mayors across the country in signing onto a U.S. Climate Mayors statement, pledging to “adopt, honor, and uphold the commitments to the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement. We will intensify efforts to meet each of our cities’ current climate goals, push for new action to meet the 1.5 degrees Celsius target, and work together to create a 21st century clean energy economy.”

The full statement can be found here.

“As our federal government retreats from its responsibility as steward of our environment, it is vitally important for state and municipal governments to uphold our commitment to the future of our planet,” Petty said. “If the president doesn’t want to do it, we will.”