Thursday, August 31, 2017

Boston City Council Looks At Overdose Awareness Day (8/31), Guns, CPA & More

City Council President Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. The Boston City Council considered the following items and more at their August 23, 2017 meeting*:

Appointments: Mayor Walsh made the following appointments:
  • Jesse Jeter, reappointed to the Boston Employment Commission until July 2019.
  • Anne Connolly, reappointed as Associate Commissioner to the Parks and Recreation Commission until January 2021.
  • Boston Fair Housing Commission: Onyen Yong, Egobudike Ezedi Jr., Michele Feliz-Rosario, reappointed as members of the Commission until July 2020.
Overdose Awareness Day: The Council voted to adopt Councilor Essaibi-George’s resolution desgnating August 31, 2017 as Overdose Awareness Day in the City of Boston. Councilor Essaibi-George noted that 4 in 10 MA residents know someone who has misused prescription painkillers in the last 5 years. Stigma may prevent someone from reaching out for help, or getting support, and this awareness day is one way of breaking down stigma around our city. There are several events happening in Boston on August 31, including on City Hall Plaza where an interfaith ceremony will occur from 5-6:30pm.

Gun Control Legislation: The Council voted 11-0 (Councilors Campbell and LaMattina absent) to adopt Councilor Flaherty’s resolution in support of H.3081, a bill under consideration at the State House to create a process for temporarily removing firearms from the possession of at-risk individuals. Individuals including mental health workers, family members, and caregivers would be able to petition a judge to issue an extreme risk protective order when someone poses a significant danger to themselves or others were they to maintain possession of a firearm.

Community Preservation Act: The Council took two actions following up on last meeting’s passage of the ordinance setting up Boston’s procedures for its Community Preservation Committee:
  • First, the Council voted to pass my order creating a Special Committee on the Community Preservation Act (CPA), which will help guide our process to nominate four members to the Community Preservation Committee and then ensure that the City Council remains an engaged and active partner in CPA actions. The Special Committee will accept applications from interested residents of Boston, evaluate candidates, hold public hearings for input from residents, and nominate four individuals for a vote from the full Council. After all the Community Preservation Committee members are in place, the Council’s Special Committee will continue to exist as a mechanism for transparency and open public process in the allocation of CPA funds.
  • Secondly, the Council voted to pass my order creating a 90-day Working Group to support the Special Committee for this first round of nominations. This first round of nominations requires the start-up work of creating an application form and process, setting evaluation criteria, and choosing four members at once; with staggered terms, future openings will likely follow the same process and come up one by one. As described in my order, this Working Group will include representatives of the Yes for a Better Boston Coalition, as well as representatives from the business community and other stakeholders as determined by the Chair of the Special Committee.
Sandwich Board Signs: The Council voted to reject without prejudice the Mayor’s proposal to make permanent the regulations instituted in 2015 as a pilot program for advertising on free-standing signs (sandwich boards). Because this proposal was delivered from the Mayor as a 60-day order, the Council needed to take action procedurally, but the Government Operations Committee plans to hold a working session to review the ordinance as well as proposals from Councilor Zakim to amend the regulations regarding concerns about too many signs on Newbury Street. In rejecting the proposal without prejudice at this time, the Committee can continue to study the issue and the Mayor can reintroduce the matter at a later date.

MBTA Green Line Extension: The Council voted to support a resolution offered by Councilor O’Malley and me in support of extending Green Line streetcar service on South Huntington Avenue from Heath Street to Hyde Square in Jamaica Plain. Such an extension would support local businesses in the Hyde Square neighborhood by attracting more visitors to the area, and would be a much needed public transit improvement for those living in the hundreds of new units of housing that has been constructed along this corridor in recent years. Thousands of new units are planned for this corridor, and residents would be almost entirely reliant on the 39 bus for public transportation without a Green Line extension.

Upcoming Hearings/Working Sessions (Watch Live )
  • Monday, Sept. 11th at 4:30PM: project with the National Black Women’s Justice Institute (NBWJI) and the Boston City Council on disciplinary policies’ impact on girls of color (Healthy Women, Families, and Communities) [Offsite at Bolling Building, 2300 Washington St.]

*Please note that August 23d was the final August City Council meeting. City Council meetings will resume September 13, 2017.

For complete notes on Boston City Council meetings, visit or sign up to receive these notes automatically each week by email. 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Fort Point Landmark Special Meeting: Green Bridge

Over the past couple of weeks you may have noticed two paint samples attached to the green pedestrian bridge connecting 6 Necco Court to the rear of 27 Melcher Street. These samples are options for the renovation of this bridge and the bridge between 5 Necco & 6 Necco, 

The Fort Point Channel Landmark District Commission is holding a public meeting regarding the paint sample mock-ups for the Necco Court Bridge on:

Thursday, August 24, 2017
5:30 PM
5-6 Necco Court

Paint Sample Mock-up

17.1289 FPC- 5 Necco Court (Necco Court Bridge)    (Previously presented 6/2017)
Applicant: Peter Cavanaugh, General Electric
Proposed Work: Review of a minimum of two green paint samples approximately 4’x4’ on the corrugated metal fa├žade of the connector bridge fronting Necco Street.

If you are unable to attend, you may send your comments by noon on Thursday to Sara McCammond at FPNA and to Lisabeth Schwabb at Fort Point Landmarks. Please note that any comments sent to Landmarks become part of public record. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Boston Police Advisory: August 19 Boston Common

On Saturday, August 19, 2017, the Boston Police Department anticipates large crowds to gather in the Boston Common and participate in a march along a predetermined route beginning at the Reggie Lewis Center and ending in the Boston Common. The Department has been and continues to be in contact with event organizers from several groups and is working with them to ensure a safe and peaceful day. 

The Department has a comprehensive operational plan in place. While details of the plan are not for public release, those in attendance at the event can expect a large police presence of both uniformed and undercover officers. The Department will be deploying fixed video cameras and mobile video support teams to assist with keeping the event safe for all who attend.  

Parking in and around the Boston Common will be prohibited. Signs have been posted, “No Stopping Boston Police Special Event” on effected roadways.

Due to increased public safety concerns, those who plan on visiting the Boston Common on Saturday August 19, 2017, are strongly urged not to bring backpacks, large bags or strollers. For those who choose to bring these items, please be advised that they may be subject to search, and there will be no storage area designated to leave the belongings.
In order to provide a safe and peaceful environment, the Boston Police Department has determined certain items be prohibited from the Boston Common.  Please see the list of prohibited items below:
  •          Firearms, knives, weapons, sharp objects, shields or fireworks
  •          Pop up tents or canopies
  •          Cans, glass containers, pre-mixed beverages or alcoholic beverages
  •          Wagons or pull carts
  •          Coolers
  •          Drones
  •          Pets (excluding certified service animals)
  •          Grills, propane tanks or open flames
  •          Bicycles
  •          Flag poles, bats, clubs, sticks (including signs attached to sticks)   
  •          Any athletic equipment or other item which could be used as a weapon

The Boston Police Department expects all who will be attending events on the Boston Common to act respectfully and responsibly. The Department intends to provide a safe and peaceful opportunity for people to exercise their Constitutional rights. Violence or property damage of any kind will not be tolerated. Anyone engaging in illegal behavior is subject to arrest and prosecution to the fullest extent of the law.  

It's A Festiv(al) Time Of The Year

updated 8.18.17 at 3:00pm: Today's South Boston Italian Pride is cancelled and will be rescheduled at a future date. 

Show your pride at the South Boston Italian Pride event on Friday, August 18th and at the Fort Point Festival on Sunday, August 20th.

Join neighbors and friends at Medal of Honor Park (aka M Street Park) on August 18th from 4-7 p.m. There will be free food and entertainment, a magician, balloons animals, a bounce house, and more. 

In 1897, the park historically known as Independence Square was set aside by the City of Boston for public open space. In 1981, the first memorial honoring Vietnam Veterans in the nation was constructed at Medal of Honor Park. Each September a ceremony to rededicate the memorial is held.

This year the park underwent renovations including improvements to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial plaza, ornamental fencing along East Broadway inspired by Victorian era fence removed in 1899, new play equipment, water play, site furnishings, lawn improvements, pathway and infrastructure upgrades.

If you haven't visited the park, this is the perfect time to bring your family, friends and enjoy the free festivities.

Closer to home is the 2nd Annual Fort Point Festival on Sunday, August 20 from 12 - 5 pm.

The Friends of Fort Point Channel invite you to a day of music, beer, games, artist vendors, dance performances, workshops, community groups, sponsored giveaways and more. The street party and festival takes place at Thomson Place and Stillings Street, which will be closed to cars for this community event featuring a Trillium Beer Garden, music by LoVeSeXy (Boston's premiere Prince tribute band), and a cornhole competition by Boston Cornhole. 

Stop by the PLAY section on Stillings St to dance your heart out at the Kids Jam Dance Party led by Urbanity Dance, get up close and personal with Boston Fire Museum touch-a-truck, view the universe through #popscope‘s solar viewing telescope, find your zen with yoga from The Monica Method, and build the fort of your dreams with our giant building blocks. 

The Festival is free and open to the public. From noon to 2pm, the Trillium Beer Garden will host EAT, a 2-hour ticketed tasting session featuring the best bites from Fort Point's favorite restaurants with the opportunity to purchase select brews from our Trillium Beer Garden. After 2 pm, the Trillium Beer Garden will open to the rest of the Festival for excellent beer for sale and music, Purchase your EAT Tickets today.

For more festival information visit the Friends of Fort Point Channel.

originally published 8.14.17

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Groundbreaking For Martin's Park: Fort Point's 1st Universally Accessible Park

Mayor Martin J. Walsh, Governor Charles D. Baker and the Richards Family invite you to groundbreaking ceremony for Martin's Park at the Smith Family Waterfront (next to the Boston Children's Museum) on:

Wednesday, August 16, 2017
1:00 PM
64 Sleeper Street
speaking program starts promptly at 1:30 PM

The event will include "a mini kids construction site", light refreshments and an opportunity to hear from the many people who helped make this park happen.The park is dedicated to Martin Richards, who lost his life in the Boston Marathon bombings but whose short life continues to inspire us all.

Martin's Park Design

The Boston Parks & Recreation Department engaged the community continuously 
throughout the design of Martin's Park. The first meeting held Feb. 10, 2016, focused on types of play, constraints of the site and anticipated project schedule, At the second meeting, April 11, 2016, the discussion centered on goals, the expanded site boundary and showcased a conceptual park plan.The final concept plan came to the community on October 30, 2016. 

Since then numerous city and state agencies have been hard at work to advance property transfers and permitting in the meantime. On August 4, 2017 Boston City Council received the Mayor's order to transfer City land to the Parks Dept. for Martin's Park. The project went out to bid in May and MacKay Construction was awarded the contract. MacKay was the contractor for Menino Park in Charlestown.

Please join the neighborhood and the community for the long awaited
Martin's Park Groundbreaking on August 16th. 

Related Posts

originally published 8.7.17

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

A Construction Update To The Neighborhood From GE


We wanted to send you construction update on GE Innovation Point. As with any construction project of this scope and complexity, we have been periodically reviewing the schedule and budget. The original accelerated schedule of constructing the buildings simultaneously over two years would have added a premium to the construction cost. Based on this review, we have decided that it makes more sense and is more cost-effective to construct the campus in two phases.

The first phase includes the renovation and build out of the two brick buildings (North Point). Construction there is underway and the buildings are scheduled to open in the first half of 2019.  At the same time, we will be doing the work to enhance the public Harborwalk and public dock.  The green bridge will also be renovated during this phase.

We know that the public space improvements were important to the local community and completing those in the first phase highlights our long-term commitment to the neighborhood.

Following the completion of the brick buildings, the second phase of construction will begin, which includes the new 12-story building (South Point) and public open space. We expect the construction will take approximately 24 months and estimate the building to open in mid-2021.

We knew that coming to Boston was the right decision for GE, and as we approach the one-year anniversary of opening our interim HQ on Farnsworth St., we couldn’t be more excited to be here. The City and Commonwealth have been tremendous partners, and along with our construction partners and neighbors, we appreciate their support as we’ve gone through the design and permitting process. We love the look of the campus and being part of the Fort Point Channel neighborhood.

We are committed to Boston and look forward to moving to GE Innovation Point, which will be a hub for innovation and the industrial internet.

Please check our website for ongoing updates to the construction schedule. We will schedule a community meeting at the end of August or early September on the updated construction plans of the first phase of this project. 

Peter F. Cavanaugh
GE Ecosystem Transformation Leader

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Tuesday, August 08, 2017

South Bay Harbor Trail Meeting Wednesday Night

The  Boston Transportation Department will be holding an informational meeting on the South Bay Harbor Trail on: 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017
6:30 pm
Mass Bay Credit Union
147 W 4th Street
South Boston, MA 02127

This meeting will focus on the progress we have made based on the comments received at the previous meeting. All are welcome to attend. 

For more information on the South Bay Harbor Trail click here.

Monday, August 07, 2017

Fort Point Landmarks August Meeting


Thursday, August 10, 2017
6:00 PM
Boston City Hall - Piemonte Room (5th Floor)
After 5:30 pm, enter and exit City Hall at the Dock Square entrance on Congress Street 
(across from Faneuil Hall).

Subject of the hearing will be applications for Certificates of Design Approval on the agenda below, review of architectural violations and such business as may come before the commission, in accordance with Ch. 772 of the Acts of 1975, as amended.from Faneuil Hall).

Floodproofing historic buildings.


1 7.1 283 FPC 22 Boston Wharf Road (continued from 6/201 7)
Applicant: Peter Cooke, T-Mobile Northeast LLC
Proposed Work: Install telecommunication equipment on the roof of the building.

Applicant: Michaela Hughes, Friends of Fort Point Channel
Proposed Work: Install banner signs on street lights.




David Berarducci, Susan Goganian. John Karoff, Lynn Smiledge. Vacancy
Altemates: Thomas Rodde, Vacancy

PLEASE NOTE NEW FOR 2017: Applications are now accepted on a rolling basis. To be added to an agenda, an application must be determined to be complete by staff fifteen (15) business days prior to the public hearing date. Incomplete applications cannot be added to a public hearing agenda.

originally published 8.1.17

Friday, August 04, 2017

Boston City Council Looks At Martin's Park, CPA Committee, Community Choice Energy & More

City Council President Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. The Boston City Council considered the following items and more at their August 2, 2017 meeting:

Martin’s Park: The Mayor submitted an order to transfer certain city-owned parcels at Sleeper Street and Seaport Boulevard to the Parks Department for the design and construction of Martin’s Park.  The park will be open to the public and dedicated to Martin Richard, whom we lost in the Boston Marathon bombings but whose short life continues to inspire us all.  

Enhanced 911: Mayor Walsh filed two requests to accept and expend grants from the state for training and certification of 911 telecommunications staff and for providing enhanced 911 services. The grants were assigned to the Public Safety & Criminal Justice Committee for a hearing.

Community Preservation Committee: The Council voted to pass an amended ordinance creating Boston’s Community Preservation Committee. After the successful Community Preservation Act ballot referendum in November, the 1% property tax surcharge has been added to tax bills starting in July. Before these CPA funds can be disbursed to projects, state law requires that the local legislative body pass an ordinance to define the composition and procedures of the committee that will make recommendations on how to allocate the funds. In our ordinance, the Committee will have 9 members: 5 appointed by the Mayor and 4 by the City Council--all for staggered 3-year terms. Of the seats appointed by the Council, one seat requires expertise in open spaces, housing and/or historical preservation, one seat requires expertise in development, business, finance, and/or construction, and two are at-large seats; all must be city residents who do not work for the City. The ordinance also includes requirements for transparency and community engagement. The Council will post the positions through the City website for anyone to apply, and a Council subcommittee to be set up will vet the applications and make recommendations to the full Council for a confirmation vote.

Voter Registration in the City of Boston: Councilor Zakim filed a hearing order to examine ways to change our voter registration process to guarantee more ballot access, including eliminating voter registration deadlines, allowing same-day voter registration, and moving to an automatic opt-out system. The matter was referred to the Special Committee on Civil Rights for a hearing. 

Net-Zero Carbon Requirements and Incentives: Councilor O’Malley called for a hearing regarding the benefits of net-zero carbon requirements and incentives in future construction in Boston. Given that more than half of Boston’s greenhouse gas emissions come from buildings, instituting such requirements would help the City meet its goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. The matter was assigned to the Environment and Sustainability for a hearing.

Community Choice Energy: I was proud to introduce an order in partnership with Councilor O’Malley authorizing the City of Boston to adopt Community Choice Energy, following our hearing order from January and working session in April. The adoption of a green Community Choice Energy plan would allow the City of Boston to surpass state renewable energy requirements and bring energy decisions into local control. This would be the first step in a state-defined process with community oversight. Our order includes specific language with stipulations to seek bids for at least 5% renewable sourcing about state standards for the default option and pricing for an opt-in of 100% renewables. 98 cities and towns in Massachusetts have already adopted community choice energy. The matter was assigned to the Environment & Sustainability for a hearing.

Safe Disposal of Home Generated Sharps: Councilor Essaibi-George introduced an ordinance to provide safe disposal of home-generated sharps. More than 20,000 improperly discarded sharps were collected by the City of Boston in 2016. This ordinance would require all retailers and distributors of sharps for home use to collect and properly dispose of used sharps at no additional cost to the consumer. The matter was assigned to the Government Operations Committee for a hearing.

Reminder: Summer City Council meetings are in Faneuil Hall while the Council Chamber undergoes renovations for universal accessibility.

For complete notes on Boston City Council meetings, visit or sign up to receive these notes automatically each week by email. 

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Boston Wharf Co Sign Shines Again

The beloved and iconic Boston Wharf Co. Industrial Real Estate sign is back. The sign, one of Boston's most visible icons and a defining feature of our Fort Point Channel Landmark District, had not brightened the skyline from atop 263 Summer Street for the last couple of weeks.

The Fort Point Neighborhood Association with support from the Fort Point Channel Landmarks District Commission and the Boston Preservation Alliance learned that a timing device failure caused the sign to go under repair. Earlier this week, it switched on with a few letters out. The sign should be completely repaired next week thanks to the maintenance and care provided by the property owner and property management company. 

The Boston Wharf Co. sign provides an illuminated visual gateway into our neighborhood and is a symbol of our industrial past. 

Your Friday Night Lineup

We have your outdoor Fort Point Friday night (August 4, 2017) lineup.

From 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm, CLF (Conservation Law Foundation) invites you to the inaugural Pitch A Blanket Day. Come out and celebrate the use of the public spaces along the Boston Harbor and the Fort Point Channel that are guaranteed for our public use and access under Massachusetts State Law, Chapter 91. The three chosen locations are: Intercontinental Hotel, Fan Pier Park, and the Public Green near Fan Pier. Grab your neighbors, picnic blankets, snacks, and lawn games. While enjoying a fun, beautiful evening outdoors, show that having free access to the water whether it be the Boston Harbor or the Fort Point Channel is important to you. Please let Amanda Yanchury know if you can make it. The starting point is the Intercontinental Hotel. More details.

End your evening at the A Street Park at Channel Center with a free screening of  Jean de Florette presented at 8:30 pm by the Fort Point Stage as part of their Summer 2017 Impromptu Outdoor Movie Nights. A greedy landowner (Yves Montand) and his backward nephew conspire to block the only water source for an adjoining property in order to bankrupt the owner (Gerard Depardieu) and force him to sell..The movie is rated PG and runs 2 hours. Bring a chair, picnic blanket or beach towel and sit out under the stars with your neighbors. In case of rain, click here or follow on twitter. Rain date is Tuesday, August 8th at 8:30 pm at A Street Park. 

2nd Track 61 Public Meeting Scheduled

updated 8/3/17 with July 27th meeting presentation

The MBTA will host a second Track 61 public meeting on:

Thursday, July 27, 2017
6:30 pm
Condon School
200 D. Street

Track 61 is being considered for a five year testing period of the new red line subway cars. The track runs from Cabot Yard south of the South Boston Bypass Road and travels northeast under each cross street from West Fifth Street until B Street and terminates at the property with frontage on Cypher Street. 

At the first public meeting, neighbors expressed concerns regarding: safety, the environmental condition of Cypher Street (contaminated "hot spots"), air pollution, the return of a heavy industrial use to an area of positive business and residential growth, and adverse effects on Flaherty Park, A Street Park and the developing West Second St. Park.

The first meeting took place June 29th. View June meeting presentation by MBTA. Additional information on Track 61 is available here including a link to the MBTA's notice of intent filed with the City of Boston's Conservation Commission. 

originally published 7.18.17