Mayor Marty Walsh and neighborhood kids cut the ribbon at the reopening of the JP Branch Library on Saturday, May 20, 2017.

JP Branch Library Wins Boston Preservation Alliance Achievement Award

Adding something new to something old to the Jamaica Plain Branch Library has been a wild success, aside from the Copley Square main branch, it is most used library in Boston. And recently the Boston Preservation Alliance honored the South Street branch for its renovations. "On this, the 40th Anniversary of the Alliance and the 30th year we've awarded projects, an emphasis on neighborhoods which percolated up from our nominees collectively exemplify what is central to Boston's success: historic places working in harmony with new construction throughout the city's neighborhoods," says Boston Preservation Alliance's website about the awards. Renovations of the library originally built in 1911 starting in 2015 and the library reopened May 2017. The Boston Preservation Alliance described how the renovations successfully mixed the new with the old:
The new addition reinstated a prominent entry sequence to the library, but the rest of the building needed a major update as well and this was completed with the utmost sympathy to its history.

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Developer Says Parents Don’t Want to Live Near Train Tracks, Wants to Decrease 3-BRs, Add More 1-BRs, 2-BRs

A public meeting will be held on July 19th to discuss a developer's proposed plan to alter the approved project at 143-171 Hyde Park Ave. to decrease the number of three-bedroom units and add more one-bedroom and two-bedroom units. The Boston Planning & Development Agency received a request by JP Parcel U LLC to change its already approved project on June 20th, 2018. The BPDA previously approved the project, located between Hyde Park Avenue and the train tracks by Forest Hills station south of Ukraine Way, in three phases in December 2014. Both Phase A and B are approved for 24 units, including six two-bedroom units and 18 three-bedroom units.

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CPA $ Recommended for Affordable Housing, Olmsted Park and Franklin Park Bears Frieze

Boston is recommending that Community Preservation Act funds be used for 35 projects across the city, including for affordable housing in Jamaica Plain. "The Community Preservation Act is a new tool that will help take our work on affordable housing, historic preservation and open space to the next level," said Mayor Marty Walsh via press release. "I am proud to recommend these important projects for funding approval, which represent a wide range of needs and will build strong neighborhoods throughout our city." The city previously called for applications for projects that require less than $500,00 to begin construction by this fall. The recommended projects were broken into several categories: historic preservation, affordable housing, recreational use and open space, and blended historic preservation/recreational use and open space.

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Video: Fisher Cat in Allandale Woods!

A recent video taken in Allandale Woods captured amazing footage of a rarely seen fisher cat hanging out in a tree. Fisher cat in Allandale Woods from JamaicaPlainNews.com on Vimeo. "I was climbing up a hill in Allandale Woods with my big yellow lab mix dog Juno. Juno got excited and started snuffling around the ground and I heard something scurrying. I looked up and there was the fisher cat in the tree," Amy Brubaker told Jamaica Plain News.

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Ground Broken for 47 Affordable Apartments at 61 Heath Street

Two local development corporations held a groundbreaking on May 31st to celebrate the beginning of construction for an apartment building of 47 affordable units. The 56,290 square foot, 4-story, apartment building at 61 Heath St., is a joint venture by the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation (JPNDC) and the Back of the Hill Community Development Corporation (BOTHCDC). “This is the fourth joint project that BOTHCDC and JPNDC have undertaken and we are excited to be bringing new life to part of the neighborhood that has lain fallow for over 40 years,” said JPNDC Executive Director Richard Thal via press release. The apartments are being built on vacant land on the Jamaica Plain and Mission Hill border near Jackson Square, which is adjacent to the Mildred C. Hailey Apartments. Through the years the site was occupied by tenement housing, residences and light commercial and industrial uses, including a bakery and a tin shop, said the JPNDC from research using Sanborn Maps.

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