News Briefs

HARRISON ALBANY BLOCK CONSTRUCTION

Construction is expected to start July 1 for the Harrison Albany Block redevelopment in the South End.

Right now a completion of a Construction Management Plan and its approval by the City of Boston is in the works and is not open to public comment.

In addition, the site is currently being surveyed to evaluate rodent presence that will be followed by a development of rodent control plan.

Once construction begins a project management trailer will be set up on site or nearby; the site will be fenced. Demolition, asbestos abatement, and some utility work will occur of this summer.

Normal site work hours will be Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with some Saturday activity to start at 8 a.m. There will be advance notice to neighbors in event of Saturday work.

The DaVita dialysis center or Gambro Building will continue to operate as normal.

Existing parking and sidewalk travel along the sides of East Dedham and East Canton streets opposite the site will be preserved. During the construction phase of the project, some parking and sidewalk access on site side of East Canton will be removed.

The worker parking for Leggat McCall and Suffolk Construction are exploring options, including speaking with the Flower Exchange owner.

In response to concerned residents, the construction companies are open to barring workers and subcontractors from parking all day in designated commercial plate zones on neighboring streets such as on East Brookline opposite the Estragon restaurant.

Anticipated completion of Building 1 is expected for October 2019.

If problems arise before or during construction, abutters and neighbors are encouraged to contact the following people with concerns: Sam Reiche, VP, Leggat McCall at [email protected] and Jason Nadeau, superintendent, Suffolk Construction at [email protected]

CANDIDATE FLYNN AT EIGHT STREETS

District 2 Candidate Ed Flynn appeared at the Eight Streets Neighborhood Association on Monday and answered some tough questions from the group. Previously, his opponent, Mike Kelley had also made an appearance at Eight Streets.

One of the key points made by Flynn came on the question of equitable taxing and paying for new City programs. Flynn said it’s time for the colleges and universities to step up.

“I would really look to the colleges and universities to step up,” he said. “There’s no reason Harvard or Boston University should be paying $200,000 in property taxes and sitting on prime property in the City on Comm Ave. I don’t think it’s fair folks are paying this large tax bills and others aren’t paying their fair share.”

He also said he would be a councilor that does not get his “marching orders from developers.”

In other news, he reiterated his stance on the OutVets controversy during the South Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade. He said he voted to include OutVets as a member of the Allied Veterans there and would continue to do so.

“It’s those issues where I have exhibited leadership skills that matter,” he said. “More importantly, I treat people fairly and with respect…I will represent everyone equally if elected.”

WORCESTER SQUARE MUSIC

In Worcester Square, Christmas pays for summer fun, and the holiday party fundraising has resulted in a great musical lineup starting on June 15.

The Worcester Square Area Neighborhood Association (WSANA) will host Music on the Square staring today, June 15, at 7 p.m. with the Jen Hoyt Trio.

Other concerts include:

  • Opera! on Thursday, July 20, at 7 p.m.
  • A third concert has yet to be booked, but will take place on Thursday, Aug. 17 at 7 p.m.

CHARLIE AND VICTORIA

The hottest news in dining in the South End comes this week from Boston Restaurant Talk, which is reporting that historic Charlie’s Sandwich Shoppe on Columbus Avenue will be taken over by Victoria’s Diner owners – a restaurant in the Newmarket Area owned by Damian and Sheree Marciante.

Boston Restaurant Talk confirmed through records that a lease had been noticed on the property to the Victoria owners.

A few months ago, the restaurant was papered over and a small sign said ‘Closed for Repairs.’

Stay tuned…

DISTRICT 7 COUNCIL FORUM

The Boston Wards 4, 8, and 9 Democratic Committees, the Boston NAACP, the South End Business Alliance, Fenway CDC, Claremont Neighborhood Association, and the Rutland Square Association will be hosting a candidate forum for the District 7 City Council race on Wednesday, June 28, at 6:30 p.m. at the United South End Settlements Harriet Tubman House (566 Columbus Ave). Yawu Miller of the Bay State Banner will be moderating. All candidates have been invited.

 

FRENCHIE SIDEWALK WOES

Members of the Eight Streets Neighborhood Association voted unanimously to send a letter to the City indicating they would not support the sidewalk seating of Frenchie Restaurant on Tremont Street unless the move back in line with other outdoor seating areas – as promised to the neighbors and the Association.

The situation has come to a head over the last week, neighbors said, when the restaurant attempted to put its seating out to the old location after promising not to do so. The agreement was to keep seating in line with other cafes in the area.

One abutter said the City had to stop a contractor this week who was attempting to rip up the brick sidewalk and put down concrete to extend the sidewalk seating.

The unanimous vote indicated the Association would not support an upcoming Sidewalk Cafe Permit unless Frenchie agrees to keep the seating in line with others so as not to block the sidewalk access.

SUPERTEENS FUNDRAISING AT DONA HABANA

Council President Michelle Wu is calling out for help to support the Boston Centers for Youth and Families SuperTeens Program at an event in the South End called Raise the Youth.

SuperTeens bridges the gap for young people who are too old for traditional summer camps, but not old enough for a formal summer job. Participating teens receive professional development, financial literacy training, and career planning advice – and earn money in the process. For many it’s a summer of “firsts”: first paid job responsibility, first time traveling to neighborhoods in Boston they’ve never been to, and first time visiting some of our city’s most treasured cultural institutions. The program traditionally has a long waitlist of applicants.

On June 28, from 6-8 p.m., Wu is holding a party at Dona Habana on Mass Avenue at the CrossTown Center (11 Melnea Cass Blvd.). The goal is to max out the number of SuperTeens slots so it is fully funded.

One can buy a ticket or become a sponsor at bit.ly/RaiseTheYouth62817. To join the host committee, email Sharon at [email protected]

LODGING HOUSE PERMIT GETS OK

Charlie Barbato and Patty Collyer got enthusiastic and unanimous support on Tuesday night at the Eight Streets Neighborhood Association meeting for their Lodging House application at 4 Milford St.

The two have been running the eight-unit lodging house for 25 years and have never had a problem until recently when they learned that there was an obscure Lodging House permit that they needed, and never had.

Barbara said six of those in the house have been there more than 20 years, including popular South End mailman Marty Higgins. Others have only recently been rented out, but very carefully. In all that time, neighbors said the couple has run the home in exemplary fashion and deserved the support.

“I found out I didn’t have a license from the Licensing Division at City Hall that I never knew about just recently,” Barbato said. “I was actually getting permits for another person when I learned about it…I do want to maintain the Lodging House license because it gives us more control. We don’t want AirBNB or short terms. We want to run a nice, clean place – small studios.”

The Association will send a letter of support.

GREENLIGHT CAFE RENOVATIONS

Greenlight Café, the grab-n-go extension to the award-winning French Brasserie, Gaslight, is closing its doors for an extensive renovation project and is slated to reopen fall of 2017. Partnering with Boston Designer Peter Niemitz of Niemitz Design Group, this project is something that partners Seth Woods, Matt Burns and Jeff Gates have wanted to do for some time, as they always strive to listen and deliver on the needs and suggestions of the SoWa community and loyal customers.

The neighborhood favorite which is located within the same building as Gaslight at 560 Harrison Ave. has been the go-to for all breakfast and lunch needs for the surrounding offices. Offering a full pastry selection, including French-inspired crepes and croissants, Greenlight also offers a selection of freshly made breakfast and lunch sandwiches, soups and salads, fruit cups, oatmeal, yogurt and more.

While undergoing renovations, locals can find a temporary pop-up next door in the lobby of 560 Harrison Ave., and once reopened, guests will enjoy a new order/pay by phone app feature, as well as an aesthetic that channels the French café and brasserie feel Gaslight is known for.

Greenlight is slated to reopen fall of 2017, and the temporary space is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

LOWELL BOYERS FEATURED AT KABINETT

KABINETT, the South End’s newest gallery, is pleased to present the first exhibition in Boston of New York-based artist Lowell Boyers. The exhibition, “Garden of Here and Now,” will be on view from June 16 through July 26.

The opening reception will be on Saturday, June 16, from 6 – 9 p.m.

Featuring mix media paintings on canvas and paper, this new body of work draws on the artist’s long-term engagement with Buddhist philosophy and practice.

The paintings are accomplished through a process of “collaging multiple events on the same plane portraying the way we experience the world…beginning with a timeless open space that allows images to emerge from spills of paint.”

Nothing is accidental in his work. His paintings as he says, “are manufactured and manipulated chaos.”

Lowell Boyers is also the oldest brother of KABINETT owner, Gabriel Boyers, who notes that he has “been looking at and loving Lowell Boyers’ paintings for longer than I’ve looked at or loved any other artist’s work.”

KABINETT is located at 467 Shawmut Ave., South End. Opening hours are by chance or by appointment.

LION’S TAIL TO UNVEIL MUSIC

The Lion’s Tail at Ink Block is opening its patio and celebrating every Monday and Thursday night in June with live music and no cover charge. There may even be an American Idol there.

Every Thursday night in June, Van Pelt-Faraday will play pop, soul, blues and covers at 7 p.m.

Every Monday night in June, Vincent King will play pop, R&B and Soul from 8-10 p.m., hosted by Charles Penguin.

TITO PUENTE CONCERT SERIES

Created in honor of Latin music icon, Tito Puente, this series is celebrating 11 years of bringing live Latin music with a strong salsa influence to Boston parks.

This series is sponsored in part by Berklee College of Music, Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción, Villa Victoria Center for the Arts, Zumix, Hyde Square Task Force, and Sociadad Latina.

Free salsa lessons led by MetaMovements at select concerts.

  • Thursday, July 6, 7 p.m.

O’Day Playground, South End

Eric Germán y su Orquesta

  • Thursday, July 13, 7 p.m.

O’Day Playground, South End

Zayra Pola

  • Thursday, July 20, 7 p.m.

Mozart Park, Jamaica Plain

Afrobrazil

  • Thursday, July 27, 7 p.m.

Mission Hill Playground, Mission Hill

Radio Calle 32

  • Thursday, August 3, 7 p.m.

O’Day Playground, South End

Conjunto Barrio

  • Thursday, August 10, 7 p.m.

Lopresti Park, East Boston

Los Hacheros

COLUMBUS AVENUE STUDENT APARTMENT UPDATE

Construction is underway for the Northeastern University and American Campus Communities  student housing complex. It will consist of 207 apartment units or around 800 beds and will be located at 10 Burke Street, on the border of the South End and Lower Roxbury.

The entire project will be about 32,000 square feet and will include ground floor retail space. The maximum height of the building will be about 230 feet or 20 stories.

The retail facility will be between 2,200 to 2,500 square feet. Right now American Campus Communities are looking to put in a locally owned business to put in something like a coffee shop or a grab and go convenience store. They do not have any specific tenants in mind yet.

Right now the foundation pile installation, which has been causing loud noises and vibrations, is set to be complete on June 16. This is expected to be the most disruptive part of the construction.

Since there have been concerns with the vibrations and noise a seismograph is on site and monitoring the vibrations being caused by the foundation piles being constructed. Staff engineers are keeping a close eye on the situation and reporting back to the manager on site.

Construction is expected to be complete by fall 2019.

“We are very sensitive to not only the surrounding buildings but the abutting buildings too,” said Jason Wills from American Campus Communities. “We have even power washed the nearby buildings.”

In addition, the construction staff hasn’t met the Boston Resident Job Policy goals yet. Right now, they currently have 29 percent employers from Boston and their goal is to reach 50 percent.

But, Wells said that after the piles are put in, which is a specialized technique, they hope to catch up and improve those numbers.

Right now they only have about 12 staff members on the site. Once construction continues past the pilings being put in they will have closer to 100 staff members on the site.

Each Wednesday at 1 p.m. there is an abutters meeting at the construction site trailer. Anyone from the public is welcome to join and hear updates on the construction process, learn about a three-week look ahead, and have any questions answered.

NORTHEASTERN GATEWAY EVENT

On Thursday, June 15 from 12:30 p.m. – 4 p.m., Northeastern Gateway will be holding a free outdoor event at the Ruggles Plaza. This will be the first of four series the Gateway Series will be holding this summer. The goal is to break down the barriers between students and residents of the nearby communities.

Bring your appetite and your imagination to kick off the summer with a harmony of unique experiences for the eyes and ears, featuring the Harmonic Conduit installation, live painting and performances, pop-up street poetry, and artist-led art-making workshops. The event is co-sponsored by the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum.

A schedule of the events include:

  • 12:30-1 p.m. • LISTENING WALK (RSVP)

with Bruce Odland and Carl Damas

(Tour starts at Forsyth Circle)

  • 12:30-4PM • FRESH FOOD GENERATION

complimentary food and drink

  • 1-3:30PM • LIVE PAINTING

Percy Fortini-Wright

  • 1-4PM • LIVE PERFORMANCES

Black Venus

Fine Art Superheroes

Odaiko New England

The Interrobang Poets

Spontaneous Stilts

  • 1-4PM • ART-MAKING WORKSHOPS

Patterns On Body Suits | Basil Halwagy

Pen & Ink | Eli Portman

Sound Poems | Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Spontaneous Sounds | Spontaneous Celebrations

 

CANDIDATE NIGHT FOR COUNCIL

Jon Santiago, the Ward 4 Democratic chair, reported that the Committee will hold a candidate nights for City Council District 2

The District 2 race will have a candidate night on July 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the Calderwood Pavilion. The event is in association with the Ellis South End Neighborhood Association.

SOWA MARKET ANNOUNCES THEME PARTIES

Boston’s largest outdoor market is in full swing, with the SoWa Open Market now bringing 100+ artisans, 50+ local farmers and food makers, a dozen iconic food trucks, craft beers, live music, and good vibes every weekend from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through October.

As part of the weekly beer garden and food truck bazaar, attendees will be able to enjoy themed dishes from food truck favorites on seven special weekends throughout the summer alongside tasty beers and ciders from top local breweries.

“The SoWa Beer Garden and Food Truck Bazaar is a great place every Saturday and Sunday and the family friendly block parties make weekends in the SoWa Arts & Design District even more fun,” said Aaron Cohen, Founder of Eat Boston. “I look forward to bringing back the popular Boston Lobster Party and Tacopocalypse and many more themed parties throughout the summer.”

To kick off the themed block party series by Eat Boston, more than 20 food trucks will gather at the SoWa Open Market on Saturday, May 27th and Sunday, May 28th for a Backyard BBQ followed up by additional themed block parties throughout the summer, including:

  • Tacopocalypse

Saturday, June 24 and Sunday, June 25

Have a taste of the world’s greatest finger food no matter if you like hard shell, soft shell, corn or flour – taste them all!

  • Boston Lobster Party

Saturday, July 8 and Sunday, July 9

After 7 years, the Boston Lobster Party is back to celebrate the New England specialty.

  • Oyster, Oyster Block Party

Saturday, August 5 and Sunday, August 6

Shuck’em, suck’em, and slurp’em down.

  • Grilled Cheese & Mac and Cheese & Steak and Cheese & Beer Festival

Saturday, September 9 and Sunday, September 10

When the worlds of cheese and beer collide. Don’t miss this exclusive festival!

  • Sausage Fest

Saturday, October 14 and Sunday, October 16

From brats, dogs, wursts and craft beer – is there anything better?

SOWA JUNE WEEKENDS

Upcoming weekend themes at SoWa include:

June 17 & 18: Father’s Day celebration including craft beer, delicious food, card making and a raffle for the chance to win a $200 gift card to Boston Chops.

June 24 & June 25: Tacopocalypse Food Truck Block Party celebrating the best of hard shell and soft shell

In addition, proceeds from sales of exclusive SoWa merchandise and donation collection boxes will go towards a local non-profit organization each month. In honor of Boston Pride, proceeds in June will benefit BAGLEY, the Boston Alliance of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth.

UNION PARK ANNOUNCES EVENTS

The Union Park Neighborhood Association (UPNA) announced its upcoming social events throughout the rest of the year. Some of the events include:

  • Thursday, June 22, 6-8 p.m., Cocktail Social, Ameriprise patio (546 Tremont).
  • Sunday, July 9, Aug. 13, Sept. 10, (5-7 p.m.), Evening in the Park, Union Park.
  • Saturday, October 7 (rain date October 8), 8 – 5 p.m., Pictures in the Park, Union Park.
  • Sunday, October 8, 1-6 p.m., Crime Walk, City of Boston.
  • Friday, December 1, 6-8 p.m., Holiday Party, Benjamin Franklin Institute.

FOPG BORDER BRIGADE

Join the Friends of the Public Garden’s Border Bridge every Thursday, 5-7 p.m.

Just show up ready to help at the Boylston Street border. FOPG is looking for champion volunteer weeders to help maintain the now-beautiful Boylston Street border and the Beacon Street border in the Public Garden. Gloves, kneepads, and some brief instructions on weed identification will be provided. No previous experience necessary and one can participate every week, a couple of weeks, or only once.

Participants will get a free Friends of the Public Garden t-shirt and a book about the Public Garden.

Email [email protected] if interested in volunteering.

NABB UPDATE

  • Licensing and Building Use Committee. NABB’s Licensing and Building Use Committee meets regularly on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Lenox Hotel. For more information, please contact the Committee’s Chair Elliott Laffer at [email protected]
  • Architecture Committee. NABB’s Architecture Committee usually meets on the first Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will be in the Clausen Room of the New England College of Optometry, 424 Beacon Street, to review applications coming before the City’s Back Bay Architectural Commission. For more information, please contact Sue Prindle through the NABB office at 617-247-3961 or by email to [email protected]
  • Summer Solstice Wine Tasting. Enjoy the longest day of the year on June 21 sipping summer whites and sparkling wines in the garden terrace of a beautiful private home. Address will be sent via confirmation email. Note: There is one flight of stairs down to the garden level. In case of rain, we will move indoors. This event is limited to a maximum of 50 people. To RSVP, make payment of $35 member / $40 non-member before cutoff of June 14th. Questions? Contact [email protected]

Wine Tasting Committee: Charlotte DeWitt, Andrew Friedland, Emily Gallup, Jim Hill, Nancy Hubeck, Lynne Levitsky, Sheri Olans, Joyce Roetter, and Bob Umans.

SOUTH END SUMMER SOULSTICE

The 5th Annual South End Summer Solstice will take place on Weds., June 21, from 5:30 to 9 p.m.

The annual summer get-together is sponsored by Washington Gateway Main Street and will take place in Blackstone Square.

As always, there will be live music, food trucks, beer and wine garden, and lots of fun activities for the entire family. This year’s Summer Solstice is a part of Make Music Boston, a series of free music events throughout the City.

MIKE KELLEY HOUSE PARTY

Randi and Bob Lathrop are hosting an evening with District 2 Candidate Mike Kelley on Weds., June 28, at 5:30 p.m.

The event will take place at 5 Haven St. in the South End. Suggested contributions are $500 to $50.

MASSPORT AIRPLANE NOISE COMPLAINT LINE

Residents who are being disturbed by airplane noise are encouraged to call the MassPort Noise Hotline 24 hours a day. The phone number is (617) 561-3333.

FROM PARIS TO THE SOUTH END

Fete de la Musique began in the summer of 1982 in Paris and has become a worldwide event, and this year for the fifth year, it will be a South End event.

Live musicians will fill the streets on Saturday, June 17, starting at 3 p.m. There will be music for all ages and area businesses, organizations and neighborhood groups have partnered to produce a diverse line up of music to be heard in the streets.

Music will be in four area parks and there will be a block party on Warren Avenue with music, food and activities. The block party will be to celebrate the retirement of the Community Music Center of Boston’s executive director, David Lapin. There will be a special presentation there of the Savin Hillbillies.

The four parks include Ringgold Park (Wayne Potash), Union Park (Revolutionary Snake Ensemble), Childe Hassam Park (All Hands Drumming, Kali Stoddard-Imari) and Frieda Garcia Park (Warren Avenue Breakdown).

The event goes until 6 p.m.

FREE FITNESS CLASSES AT THE PRU

Free fitness classes at Prudential Center are back and start next week. Below is a list for the FIT on the Garden series. Classes are scheduled with some of Boston’s top fitness instructors for Wednesdays in June from 6-7 p.m. at Prudential Center.

  • June 21 Trainer: Izzy VanHall; Studio: YogaWorks; Class: Hip Hop Yoga
  • June 28 Trainer: Sarah Gaines; Studio: CYC / Burn Fitness; Class: Bootcamp HIIT

PINE STREET INN GOOD NEIGHBOR HOTLINE

Residents who have any problems or concerns related to the Pine Street Inn on East Berkeley Street and Harrison Avenue in the South End are invited to call the Good Neighbor Line. Security Director Kevin Smith said they are glad to get calls from the neighborhood and would address any matter brought to their attention.

The number is (617) 892-9210.

SOUTH END DATES

  • The St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church will hold its Spring Greek Festival on June 17 and 18. There will be homemade Greek food, music and dancing. The church is located on Union Park Street.
  • The Blackstone/Franklin Square Neighborhood Association will hold its annual scholarship reception on Tuesday, June 20, at 7 p.m. in the [email protected], 725 Harrison Ave. The reception will bring together the winning college-bound students from the neighborhood with neighbors who have generously given towards the fund.
  • City Council Safe Injection Site Public Hearing, The City Council’s Annissa Essaibi George and Frank Baker will host a pubic hearing in City Hall on Monday, June 19, at 2 p.m. regarding potential Safe Injection Sites being allowed in Boston. Both councilors are currently not in favor, but want to gather information.
  • Titus Sparrow Concerts, The Friends of Titus Sparrow will host another outdoor concert on Weds., June 21, at 6:30 p.m. in the Park. Big Ol’ Dirty Bucket Soul and Funk 10-piece band will be on the docket.

On June 28, at 6:30 p.m., BT ALC Big Band will bring its funk sound to the Park as well.

  • The Old Dover Neighborhood Association will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, June 20, at 6:30 p.m. There will be no meetings planned for July or August.
  • Stoop Parties are back. The Eight Streets Neighborhood Association will hold its first Stoop Night of the summer on Friday, June 23, on Dwight Street.
  • Friends of Watson Park will be holding a postcard and lemonade sale as part of the South End Garden Tour on Saturday, June 17, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Postcards of the park are four for $25.

FENWAY/SOUTH END HOURS FOR CONGRESSMAN CAPUANO

Congressman Michael Capuano will hold office hours for the Fenway and South End neighborhoods on the second Thursday of every month at the Fenway Community Health Center, 1340 Boylston St.

 

The hours are from noon to 1 p.m. and will have a representative from Capuano’s office in attendance.

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