HONDA SPORT ALERT
Boston Police D-4 officers reported that there has been a recent rash of Honda Sport vehicles having their tires stolen, with the vehicle left on cinder blocks.
Recently, there was one car in front of the Starbuck’s on Tremont Street that had all four tires stolen. Meanwhile, another vehicle in the area that had two tires stolen. Both were on Honda Sport vehicles, so owners of such vehicles should be aware of the threat.
COUNCILORS CALL FOR HEARING OVER HOSPITAL MERGER
Boston City Councilors Tim McCarthy and Ed Flynn announced this past week that they have called for a hearing regarding the proposed 13 hospital merger of Caregroup, Inc., the parent company of Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center, and Lahey Health System. If approved, the merger would be the largest in the history of Massachusetts. Moreover, Beth Isral-Leahy Health would control one in three hospitals in eastern Massachusetts and become the biggest health provider in the region.
The Department of Public Health has recommended approval of this merger, while the Health Policy Commission and attorney general’s office have yet to weigh in on the matter.
“In recent years, there was significant concern from state officials, anti-trust specialists and consumer advocates related to potential hospital mergers,” said Flynn. “Although this decision is under the purview of the attorney general, the Department of Public Health and the Health Policy Commission, I believe it is our obligation as elected officials to allow the public to weigh in and share their concerns.”
Flynn said that he hopes this hearing will allow him to learn more about how this merger would impact Tufts Medical Center and community health centers in his district and their ability to provide access to healthcare for middle and low-income residents, as well as communities of color.
YAWKEY WAY CHANGES
The Red Sox, with the approval and cooperation of all abutters on Yawkey Way, have filed a petition with the City of Boston Public Improvement Commission requesting that the Yawkey Way street name be restored to its original Jersey Street name.
Restoring the Jersey Street name is intended to reinforce that Fenway Park is inclusive and welcoming to all.
In a Red Sox newsletter update it stated, “It is important to separate the unfortunate and undeniable history of the Red Sox with regards to race and integration from the incredible charitable work the Yawkey Foundation has accomplished in this millennium and over the last 16 years. The positive impact they have had, and continue to have, in hospitals, on education programs, and with underserved communities throughout Boston and new England, is admirable and enduring.”
The Red Sox appreciate the partnership of the other property owners, and the consideration of the City on this important matter. A hearing has not been set yet.
PIERCE BOSTON OPENS IN THE FENWAY
Samuels & Associates in partnership with Landsea announced on Thursday, March 1, the grand opening of Pierce Boston, an unprecedented luxury ownership opportunity in the Fenway.
Located at the intersection of Brookline Avenue and Boylston Street, the 30-story tower serves as the gateway to the Fenway and the City of Boston, and has 109 condominium units, 240 rental units and more than 20,000 square feet of street-level dining and retail.
“As we unveil Pierce Boston today we’re celebrating a new standard of luxury living in Boston’s most dynamic neighborhood,” said Leslie Cohen, principal, COO, and head of asset management at Samuels & Associates. “With more residents moving in every day, we are excited to welcome young professionals, families, and couples looking to become part of this vibrant community and immerse themselves in everything Pierce Boston and the Fenway have to offer.”
The intersection of Brookline and Boylston Streets is home to Plaza (Arcade), a specially commissioned public-art installation at the base of the building by world-renowned artist Alexandre da Cunha.
Street-level tenants will be high-end retail, including an intimate wine bar from the Haley.Henry team dubbed Nathailie, on track to open in summer 2018.
With recent daylighting of the Muddy River, the Pierce plaza, open to the public, will be fully integrated into the Emerald Necklace and connected to existing green space along the Fens and the forthcoming 1.1-acre park at 401 ParK, formerly known as the Landmark Center.
JANEY APPEARS AT FORUM
Councilor Kim Janey made her first presentation to the South End Forum in a brief meet and greet at Tuesday night’s meeting.
Janey, who represents District 7, lives in Roxbury, but said she had strong ties to the South End as her great grandparents owned a brownstone on West Canton Street. She recalls playing in Titus Sparrow Park and going to Charlie’s and the Harriet Tubman House.
Janey said her major issues on the Council will be the affordable housing crisis, education, and small business. She is also a staunch advocate of the arts, and recently helped to make sure the new Huntington Theatre will have a cultural use for the community.
Janey also stressed that transportation and transportation equity are very important to her. As someone who doesn’t own a car and rides the Silver Line, she said she has a lot of suggestions and improvements she would like to see when it comes to bus travel in District 7.
CLOSURES ON MASS AVE. BRIDGE
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has announced that it will close Massachusetts Avenue north and southbound in the vicinity of the bridge over Commonwealth Avenue from 7 a.m. on Saturday, March 10 to 7 p.m. on Sunday, March 11. The Commonwealth Avenue bypass under the bridge will also be closed to traffic.
The closure is necessary to allow crews to safely and effectively conduct preparation activities and remove asbestos material that is contained within the existing bridge structure and was not visible until construction began. This material is located within the structure and is only accessible while construction operations are ongoing. Appropriate containment measures that meet safety standards will be in place during the asbestos removal.
The approximately two-day closure in March also eliminates the need for daily closures between now and the full bridge replacement that is currently planned from 10 p.m. on Thursday, May 10, to 5 a.m. on Tuesday, May 15. Public meetings are planned in March and April, prior to the May four-day, full-bridge closure, and meeting notifications will be distributed to media outlets and the project email list.
SOUTH END LIBRARY UPDATES
The Friends of the South End Library reported at Tuesday’s South End Forum meeting that they have reached their initial fundraising goal to improve the library.
President Marleen Neinhuis said that was in no small part to donations of $1,500 from the Worcester Square Area Neighborhood Association and $1,000 from the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA).
- The second public hearing on the renovation project of Library Park has been scheduled for Thursday, March 22, at 6:30 p.m. in the South End Library. It will be a look at the re-design of the re-design.
Neinhuis added that the construction on the park will likely mean that it will be closed this summer.
- On March 27 at 6:30 p.m., State Rep. Byron Rushing will reflect on his many years in the state legislature representing the South End. It will be part of the author talk series and will be titled, ‘My Life and Debt in the Massachusetts State House.’ He will be introduced by State Rep. Aaron Michlewitz.
- On April 1, the South End Library will hold its annual Easter Egg Hunt at 11 a.m.
LOVE YOUR BLOCK REGISTRATION
The 2018 Love Your Block Spring Cleanup registration will open March 1 and end April 27.
Scheduled for May 5 beginning at 9 a.m. across the city, the Love Your Block mission is to provide opportunities for all Bostonians to become civically involved in their community. This gives Bostonians a chance to volunteer their time maintaining and improving the city one block at a time.
Visit boston.gov to register your neighborhood.
DATE AT BWSC ON PRIVATE SEWERS
The Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) has agreed to do an inventory of all the private sewers located in the City, an agreement that neighbors have sought unsuccessfully for years.
The private sewer issue affects only a small number of people, but it can be a financially ruinous proposition for those that it does effect – causing them to have to form quasi-governmental authorities to maintain their sewers. It’s something that most learn about only after they buy their homes, and one that many in the situation hope can be resolved with BWSC.
Until now, there has been little progress, but Derek Lessing of the South End reported that after a meeting last week with the BWSC, neighbors and elected officials, the tune changed.
“After having our meeting postponed several times, we finally met with BWSC last week,” he said. “The difference this time is we had with us some heavy hitters like Councilor Ed Flynn, Councilor Michelle Wu and a representative from State Rep. Aaron Michlewitz’s office. I think it made a difference.”
With that group there, the BWSC agreed to do the inventory, which they have never agreed to do before.
The inventory is to be done by July, and after that there are expected to be more contentious conversations with BWSC regarding equity of private sewer owners.
The City Council has expressed an interest in also holding a public hearing on the private sewer issue.
SOUTH END DATES
- Learn about the new Community Preservation program and how you can identify and apply for project funds. The Committee will be soliciting input and participation as they develop a neighborhood agenda going forward. The event will take place on Tuesday, March 20. at the Villa Victoria Center for the Arts at 85 West Newton St., from 6 – 8 p.m.
- Old Dover Neighborhood Association monthly meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 20, at Project Place, 1145 Washington St., from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
- Blackstone Franklin Square Neighborhood Association General business meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 20, at the D4 Police Station Community Room at 650 Harrison Ave. from 7 – 8:30 p.m.
- The Fenway Community Center will be holding its next Death Cafe on Tuesday, March 13, from 6:30p.m. to 8p.m.
- The next English Conversation Cafe will take place at the Fenway Community Center on Tuesday, March 20, from 7 – 8:30p.m. at 1282 Boylston St.
BACK BAY HAPPENINGS
- The Neighborhood Association of the Back Bay next Green Committee meeting will take place on Wednesday, March 14, at 5:30 p.m. at the Learning Project located at 107 Marlborough Street.
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.