... Deveney out as Registrar of Motor Vehicles ...... DeLeo: "For those who rely on the MBTA the system is in crisis" ...... Walsh, other mayors ending June with four-day climate conference in Honolulu ...... Polling shows division, strong feelings over supervised injection sites ...... Former US Transportation Secretary LaHood helping lead examination of MBTA safety record ...... Branches advance temporary budget while annual plan remains holed up in conference committee ...... Enviro groups lament end of electric vehicle rebate program ...... Amid council uproar over prosecutor nominee, Baker asks to keep psychology expert Bonner on Parole Board ...... Vineyard Wind moves proposed sites of three wind turbines nearest to Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard ...... Coonamessett River restoration project in Falmouth nets $360,000 federal grant ...... Galvin to display "original copy" of Declaration of Independence on Fourth of July ...... Tax revenue growth in fiscal 2019 could surpass revenue estimate for 2020 budget ...... South Shore lawmakers to discuss non-binding air quality monitoring ballot questions ...... Senate Revenue Working Group to hold open meeting June 25 in Lawrence with Commissioner Harding ...... DEP hits Southbridge landfill operator with $136,500 penalty for odor, waste discharge violations ...... Ethics Commission outlines conflict of interest case against Norwood Selectwoman Helen Donohue ...... Laws passed this year: conversion therapy ban, transpo bond, cap on kids lift ...... June 25 DPU public hearing planned on lost gas reporting requirements ...
Latest Headlines:
House:
ADJOURNED 'til Thursday at 11 a.m. (informal)
Senate:
ADJOURNED 'til Thursday at 11 a.m. (formal)
DOWNTOWN PLAZA BACKED BY BID, MILLENNIUM SEEN AS "TRIAL FOR THE CITY" .: The State House News Service

DOWNTOWN PLAZA BACKED BY BID, MILLENNIUM SEEN AS "TRIAL FOR THE CITY"

By Chris Triunfo
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE

BOSTON, AUG. 27, 2018.....The Boston Transportation Department on Tuesday opened a newly built public plaza in Downtown Crossing.

"We are creating a space that is a new front-door," Chris Osgood, the city's chief of streets, said during the opening ceremony for the plaza at Tontine Crescent. "This will be a new plaza for everybody to enjoy. Our streets are not just places that connect neighborhoods, they also connect neighbors."

In early August, traffic barriers were erected along a swath of Franklin Street, beginning at Arch Street and culminating at the Millennium Tower plaza, reducing traffic to one lane. The barriers were part of a temporary trial to study new traffic patterns that would arise from the lane reduction.


Chris Osgood, Boston's chief of streets, attended the plaza's opening ceremony. "We are creating a space that is a new front-door. This will be a plaza for everybody to enjoy," he said. [Chris Triunfo / SHNS]

Now, the barriers are bordered by a new bright green bike lane that surrounds public art, seating space and potted plants. Last summer, a less developed version of the new plaza appeared on the road for one day as a pop-up concept, where locals could come sit and enjoy the space while engineers observed the plausibility of such an installation.

One year later, the city has teamed up with the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District (BID) Corporation and Millennium Partners for the construction of the plaza. Despite this being the second iteration of the public space, it is not final. City officials are calling this a temporary plaza with the potential to become permanent in two years.

Joe Larkin, Millennium Partners' local principal, said that it will serve as "an interim plan to see if all the logistics work out. If it passes the test, we would love to go permanent."

Rosemarie Sansone, formerly a member of the Boston City Council, now serves as president and CEO of the Downtown Boston BID. To her, BID's involvement in the development of the plaza represents a much larger goal.

"Whenever you add activity to any block in the city, where people can sit and enjoy, you activate the space," Sansone said. "This is not only a trial for Tontine Crescent, it's a trial for the city. It's the first step of many."

Also of importance to the city and its collaborators is the impact the plaza will have on local business.

"Hopefully this is only the beginning of how we work together with the community to grow," said Transportation Department commissioner Gina Fiandaca. "This plaza reimagines our streetscape, and the work done to harness the support of the community was an important part of the process."

Among the businesses flanking the plaza on the sidewalk is The Merchant Restaurant. General manager Tena Reynolds used the opening ceremony as an opportunity to give out samples of iced coffee and tea.

"This is just amazing," Reynolds said. "It's nice to see the street finally getting the attention it deserves. I have nothing but high hopes for its success."

As city officials and private collaborators addressed the public, Reynolds' four year-old daughter, Bella, made her way back and forth from the store to one of the plaza's tables with cups of iced tea. When asked about the new public space, she smiled and said, "It's so pretty."

END
08/27/2018


Serving the working press since 1894
http://www.statehousenews.com


 
 
State House News Service