The 100-year anniversary of the the Great Molasses Flood is still a little more than four years away, but one North End resident has been pitching a conceptual design for a memorial he would like to see built on the Rose Kennedy Greenway to remember the victims.
Bryan Webb, a civil engineer at Kleinfelder in Cambridge, first tossed his Great Molasses Flood memorial concept out at a public hearing last June, where MassDOT presented initial design proposals for highway ramp covers along the Greenway.
“[The Greenway] is a great spot in the heart of the city for people to escape the city,” Webb told BostInno in a phone call. With MassDOT already in the initial phases of pitching a number of potential construction proposals for three Greenway parcels – parcels 18, 12 and 6 – Webb feels now is the time to start considering his proposal.
The timing of potential MassDOT construction “could coincide with the 100-year anniversary of the flood,” he said.
The Boston Molasses Disaster crippled the North End on Jan. 15, 1919. A 25-foot wave of molasses came pouring out of the Purity Distilling Company’s 50-foot-tall tank the day after it collapsed. About 2,300,000 gallons of sweetener ran through Boston, claiming the lives of at least 21 and injuring as many as 150 others.
Webb, who says 23 North End residents were killed that day, believes the memorial would be a great way to tie the Greenway into the area’s history.
Again, this is still very conceptual and he’s looking for thoughts and suggestions from North End residents and anyone who wants to comment/share his or her ideas (Webb’s email: email@example.com). His current design features the Great Molasses Flood memorial planted atop Parcel 6, across the street from the Haymarket T stop.
Renderings via Bryan Webb; Photo/public domain