by Greta Jochem, '17
Nine miles outside of Boston in the city of Woburn, the
practically century-old Kraft Heinz plant that most recently
produced gelatin and other product ingredients, is ceasing
operations. The closing of the 57-acre plant has raised questions
about how the site will be redeveloped and its impact on the
Rising senior Miranda Willson is studying the plant and its redevelopment as part of the Tufts Summer Scholars program, which funds undergraduates pursuing ten-week independent research projects under the guidance of Tufts faculty.
After completing an environmental policy course with Ninian Stein, a lecturer in the Environmental Studies Program, Willson was interested in pursing research that combined her interests as a double major in environmental studies and urban policy and development, a course of study she designed through the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies.
Stein, who currently studies industrial reuse and bioregional urbanism, suggested Willson focus her research on industrial redevelopment—the process of converting potentially environmentally-hazardous, former industry sites into new buildings, parks, or mixed-use spaces that benefit the surrounding community. Stein also agreed to act as her faculty advisor for the project.