O’Malley Proposes E-Commerce Exchange Zones in Boston

City Councilor Matt O’Malley, whose district includes Jamaica Plain, is looking to provide Boston residents with a safe, public place to conduct their e-commerce transactions.

“People can make any arrangements they could be comfortable with,” O’Malley told the Boston Globe. “This is an opportunity for them to take advantage of a safe space.”

O’Malley’s resolution, filed Monday, arises out of the increase in online-initiated transactions, which sometimes include the face-to-face exchange of purchased items. O’Malley proposes that district police stations could provide residents with a “safe, well-lit and neutral location” to exchange goods.

O’Malley told Jamaica Plain News that Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans supports the initiative. O’Malley hopes to discuss the effort with Mayor Marty Walsh soon, after which it could be implemented through signage and spreading awareness, he said.

The full text of the resolution is below.


WHEREAS:​ Online transactions using Craiglist, eBay, Facebook groups and other websites are now a commonly used way for individuals to buy goods; and

WHEREAS: ​Residents who make arrangements for an e-commerce sale may feel vulnerable meeting a stranger to make a transaction; and

WHEREAS:​ E-commerce Exchange Zones would provide residents with a safe, well-lit and neutral location to conduct exchanges of goods or money such as the sale of event tickets or other items; and

WHEREAS:​ Boston’s district police stations and headquarters include lobbies and vestibules that are staffed 24-hours a day; and

WHEREAS: ​E-commerce Exchange Zones could be created with little cost to the city;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED:​ That the Boston City Council strongly urges the creation of E-commerce Exchange Zones in police stations and other public buildings in Boston to provide residents with an alternative space to conduct online transactions.

District 6 City Councilor Matt O'Malley

City of Boston

District 6 City Councilor Matt O’Malley

  • Hugo_JP

    Would we also be able to use the police lobbies when meeting blind dates from Match, Tindr, Grindr, etc?