An unusual light-up display has been turning heads in a quiet corner of East Boston over the past few weeks.
Surrounded by signs protesting a planned electrical project, it’s a massive box filled with tubes and blue and red lights. On top – until very recently – sat a family of plastic skeletons on a park bench: two grown-up-sized dead people, a dead baby and a dead dog.
Not everyone is amused.
“Plastic skeletons of puppies and babies and families – that is not sitting well with the residents of Eagle Hill,” said State Rep. Adrian Madaro, a lifelong resident of the neighborhood who said he’s been driving by the thing twice a day for the past month. He said he’s heard several complaints form his constituents.
“That doesn’t de-legitimize their concerns,” he added. “I just, I don’t know. I guess everyone has their own method of doing things.”
A group called Empower Eagle Square is behind the attention-grabbing artwork. Donato Berardi, who identified himself as the group’s lawyer, said they are opposed to utility company Eversource’s plans to install an electrical substation and high-powered electrical cables underground in the area.
Berardi said opponents believe the station will have negative health impacts on neighbors – which Eversource disputes – hence the skeletons.
He said he’s glad the installation is getting attention.
“We needed something that was going to depict a situation where these cables are nasty,” Berardi said. “If you think that display is ugly, what’s going to happen when the substation is built? It’s really going to be unsightly.”
Berardi also represents Channel Fish Co., a seafood processing company near the project site and across the street from the display. The light-up artwork is in a lot Berardi said was owned by a private company he didn’t name. He said he wasn’t sure who built it.
The snow-dusted skeleton family was there overlooking Eagle Square on Monday night. But by Tuesday night, after Metro interviewed Berardi, the skeletons were gone.