News Briefs


The Ellis South End Neighborhood Association voted on Jan. 22 to support and give a letter of non-opposition to the medical marijuana store proposed by Compassionate Organics for 633 Tremont St. – which is actually in the Pilot Block neighborhood.

The support came two weeks after a rousing community meeting where a clear majority of the hundreds in the room were against the proposal.

“The Board voted to support a decision of non-opposition to the zoning variance request for this site with the direction that a Good Neighborhood Agreement be negotiated with Compassionate Organics and once done, be brought to the Executive Committee for finalization,” read a statement from the Ellis Board. “This vote followed the procedures set forth in the by-laws of the Ellis South End Neighborhood Association.”


A new outdoor fitness series encourages people to venture outside and experience the beauty of the Esplanade in winter while kicking off the new year with regular workouts. All are welcome to warm up, score cool swag, and get their blood pumping at the Frost Fit Winter Series Presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts with the support of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation.

This is a first-of-its kind fitness series on the Esplanade! First, every Saturday in February (Feb. 2, 9, 16, and 23, with snow dates on March 2 and 9), instructors from the November Project will lead participants through running loops, body-weight exercises, and other fun, energetic activities designed to keep them moving (and therefore warm). Anyone who attends these workouts, which run from 10 to 11 a.m. in front of the DCR Hatch Shell on the Esplanade, will receive a Frost Fit Winter Series fleece headband, bagels, coffee, and hot chocolate. Headbands are limited to the first 450 participants.

Then, to finish the series strong, the Esplanade Association is planning an outdoor celebration event in March (Date TBD). This will be a heart-pounding, energetic, and fun workout, with more information to be released soon. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts will serve as the Presenting Sponsor of all events in the series, demonstrating the company’s commitment to helping the people of Massachusetts stay active and healthy all year long. Interested participants can find more information and register for the series at


The Charlesgate Alliance will be hosting its second annual silent auction on Sunday, Jan. 27 from 3 – 6 p.m. at 400 Commonwealth Ave. There is complimentary admission with your R.S.V.P., which can be done at The auction will feature sports tickets, restaurant gift certificates, gift baskets, and more.


Mayor Martin J. Walsh together with LIHC Investment Group, the Boston Housing Authority (BHA), Mass Alliance of HUD Tenants (MAHT), and Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS), announced HUD approval of a creative plan to keep Concord Houses in the South End affordable for at least the next 40 years, with the support of the building’s tenants.

Spanning two buildings located at 705-715 Tremont St. in the heart of the South End, the HUD subsidy provisions governing the property expired in 2017, putting it at risk of losing its long-term affordability.

Of the 181 households at Concord Houses, 171- or 95 percent of households – chose to sign a waiver to convert their Enhanced Vouchers (EVs) to a new project-based rental assistance (PBRA) contract to make the plan work. The new HUD contract ensures homes at Concord Houses will be reserved for individuals earning no more than 80 percent area median income (AMI) and is renewable for a total of 40 years.

The agreement also guarantees that current and future tenants pay no more than 30 percent of their income toward rent, which will actually reduce the rent burden for 30 existing households at the property. The remaining 10 households will receive rent protections in the form of EVs administered by BHA.

LIHC Investment Group is undertaking a $7 million repair and capital improvement campaign at the property, which includes a new entry system and security cameras; flooring and ceiling replacement; lighting upgrades in the building’s common areas; and exterior work ranging from masonry repair to new fencing and landscaping. Under LIHC’s ownership, apartments in the building have already received new kitchen cabinets, granite countertops and appliances; upgraded bathroom fixtures, tubs, and tiles; and vinyl plank flooring.


The Esplanade Association received a $6,668 grant through the Baker-Polito Administration’s Partnerships Matching Funds Program to combat graffiti. In partnership with local artists, the Esplanade Association will use this money to display new artwork on three concrete pump houses along the Esplanade.


•‘Shades of Light’ recital at Trinity Church – Katherine Growdon, mezzo-soprano, performs Resphigi’s “Il Tramonto” and Barber’s “Dover Beach” with the Arneis Quartet and Debussy’s “Chansons de Bilitis” and Dutilleux’s bluesy “San Francisco Night” with pianist Linda Osborn in St. Andrew’s Hall on Sunday, Feb. 10, at 2 p.m. on the fourth floor of the Parish House of Trinity Church, Copley Square. The performance will be followed by a reception to meet and chat with the artists.

Tickets are $20 each at the door, and admission is without charge for those 18 and under.

•French Cultural Center – In this discussion, we will learn about sleeping better and exercising—how and when? For the cooking workshop, attendees will prepare velouté d’asperges et salade de carottes râpées (asparagus soup and homemade carrot salad).
*Friday, Jan. 25, 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

For our last discussion, we will learn about vitamins, supplements, and meditation. For the cooking workshop, attendees will prepare soupe et crème de champignons et salade frisée au vinaigre balsamique (mushroom soup and frisée salad with homemade balsamic vinaigrette).

•NABB will host a members reception on Sunday, Jan. 27, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. in the Boston Park Plaza Lobby. Come and meet your fellow NABB members and learn about Committees and Groups. New members are welcome and can join at the door. Please R.S.V.P. by Jan. 20.


•United South End Artists will have hold the perfect cure for the winter blues with an open studios event on Saturday, Jan. 26, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Artists will be available in their studios for residents to see their works and to make purchases directly from the artists.

•The Blackstone/Franklin Neighborhood Association canceled its January meeting this week due to conflicts with other City events and meetings. However, they will resume meeting in March on the third Tuesday of the month.

•The Smith (Harrison-Albany Block) community meeting will take place on Jan. 24 at 6:30 p.m. in the D-4 Station Community room. The meeting will be to address impacts and discuss what is coming up.

•Eight Streets Neighborhood Association did cancel its January meeting, but will be back in action on Tuesday, Feb. 12.

•The next Union Park Neighborhood Association (UPNA) General Meeting open to all will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 5, at 7 p.m. at the Community Center located at 346 Shawmut Ave. (across from Upton Street). The agenda will be sent out in advance of the meeting and will include, among other items, the election of the 2018 UPNA Board. Anyone interested in being placed on the ballot should contact Jamie Fox.

•The South End Forum Opiate Working Group has released its meeting schedule for Winter/Spring 2019. The group will meet at 4 p.m. in the Crosstown Hilton on Jan. 29, Feb. 19, March 19, April 23, and May 21.

•The Friends of the South End Library will hold their annual members meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 5, at 6:30 p.m. in the library. The audience will elected the proposed slate of directors and there will be an update about fundraising efforts for library renovations.

•The South End Community Health Center will have its annual meeting and reception on Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 5:30 p.m. in the health center, 1601 Washington St. The guest speaker will be new State Rep. Jon Santiago, who is also a doctor and a member of the health center board.


Urbanity Dance will present Substrate Independent, the first showcase by its professional Company at its newest South End studio, the Roth Family Gallery for Community Dance on Harrison Avenue, on Friday, January 25, at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. Choreographed by Urbanity Company member Jacob Regan, Substrate Independent is a result of a new bi-annual creative residency hosted by Urbanity Dance.

The Roth Gallery is located at 725 Harrison Ave. #100, Boston, MA 02118. Tickets for Substrate Independent range from $25-$50.



The Boston Red Sox announced that Billy Joel will return to Fenway Park on Sept. 14. He will also be the first artist to be inducted into a Music Hall of Fame display being created this off season depicting the artists who have had multiple successful shows at Fenway Park. Tickets will go on sale to the public on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 10am.

–Phish will also be playing at Fenway Park on July 5 and 6. Tickets will go on sale to the public beginning Friday, February 1 at 10am.

–The Who will take the stage at Fenway Park on Friday, September 13. Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 10 a.m.

•Friday, Feb. 8, and Saturday, Feb. 9 – Red Bull Crashed Ice | 20,000 expected per day | TBA- TBA.

• The BPDA will hold an Impact Advisory Group Meeting for the proposed Kenmore Hotel at 560-570 Commonwealth Ave. on Jan. 29 from 6:30-8 p.m. in the Kenmore Classroom Building, Room 106, 565 Commonwealth Ave. Please note that the purpose of this meeting is different than that of a traditional community meeting. IAG meetings prioritize discussion between the project proponent and IAG members.

•The BPDA will hold an Impact Advisory Group meeting for the proposed project at 1241 Boylston St. on January 31 from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Fenway Community Center. The proposed project consists of a 184-room hotel with a ground-floor restaurant. It will include approximately 105,000 square feet of building area and will be eight stories with a maximum height of 90 feet. There will be approximately 82 parking spaces in one below-grade level, and the project will include an existing Shell gas station. Please note that the purpose of this meeting is different than that of a traditional community meeting. IAG meetings prioritize discussion between the project proponent and IAG members


The Fenway Community Center will be hosting a series of thought-provoking, creative conversations to celebrate our uniquely lived lives. Three unique sessions will encompass aspects of personalized storytelling, bucket list building, expressions of gratitude, and open contemplation of our own “last words.” The sessions are from 7-9 p.m. on the following Wednesdays: Jan. 16, 30, and Feb. 13, and cost of admission is $105 per person and includes a personal copy of “Youlo Pages,” the award-winning legacy planner/workbook/journal. To register, go to
•Fenway Community Center is hiring! The community center is looking to hire a Program Coordinator. Visit for more information.

•The Fenway Community Center will be hosting a Wellness Weekend on January 26 and 27. Check the FCC website for more details.

•The Peterborough Senior Center holds bingo at 12:30 p.m. and a Tech Café at 11 a.m. every Wednesday. Come play bingo and meet new people, or can get help with your phone or tablet/computer!

•On Jan. 29, at 1 p.m., the Peterborough Senior Center will be hosting Fall Prevention/Safety with Katherine Palms from Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

For the Record

•CITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE ON SMALL BUSINESS AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS WORKING SESSION, Jan. 24, 3:30 p.m. at City Hall. A working session regarding best equity practices in the City’s marijuana licensing process and the potential for a social equity program. The Chair of the Committee is Councilor Janey. The Sponsors of the Docket are Councilors McCarthy and Janey.

From the Jan. 24 Zoning Advisory Subcommittee Hearing, City Hall:

•18 Yarmouth St., South End.  Applicant: Eben Kunz

Purpose: Construct 2 decks off rear wall and related doors.

•CITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS HEARING, Jan. 28, 10 a.m. A hearing on a petition for a special law re: An Act Authorizing the City of Boston to Offer Early Voting in Municipal Elections. The Chair of the Committee is Councilor Michael Flaherty. The sponsors of the docket are Councilor Josh Zakim and Councilor Kim Janey.

From the Jan. 29 Licensed Premise Violations hearing, City Hall, 10 a.m.:

•Hynes Fine Dining, LLC, d/b/a as: Towne, 900  Boylston St., Back Bay.

Date: 12/18/2018, Blocked fire exit (second floor).

•The Pitcher’s Mound, Inc., d/b/a Diamond At Fenway, 72 Brookline Ave., Fenway. Date: 10/23/2018, Sale of alcohol (draft beers) to two intoxicated patrons at 4th floor, Boylston Porch Pub ‑ behind Cumberland Terrace.

•Eataly Boston, LLC, d/b/a Eataly, 800 Boylston St., Back Bay. Date: 12/18/2018, Service of alcohol to persons under 21 years of age.

•Wagamama Boston One, LLC, d/b/a Wagamama, 800 Boylston St., Back Bay.

Date: 12/18/2018, Failure to notify Boston Licensing Board of change of manger (manager of record on longer employed).

From the Jan. 30 License Board hearing, City Hall, 10 a.m.:

•PHO COUNTRYSIDE II, INC. D/B/A:  PHO COUNTRYSIDE, 468  COMMONWEALTH AVE., Back Bay. Holder of a Common Victualler 7 Day Wines and Malt Beverages w/ Liqueurs License has petitioned to change the d/b/a of the licensed business – From: Pho Countryside  To: Pho Common.

•TDC HERITAGE HOLDINGS, LLC, 91  PARK PLZ, Back Bay. Holder of a Common Victualler 7 Day All Alcoholic Beverages License has petitioned to transfer the licensed business from the above – To: 79 Park Plaza, LLC d/b/a The Oyster Club (at the same location) 2 floors totaling approximately 7,125 sq.ft., including basement (3,032 sq. ft.) and ground level/first floor (4,093 sq. ft.). Basement consisting of kitchen, office, storage and restrooms. First floor consisting of one private dining room, and one main room with main dining seating, bar area, and raw bar. Seasonal outdoor patio (April-October) on private property, consisting of 1,218 sq, ft. Christopher Parsons, Manager. 2 a.m. Closing Hour.

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