Boston has an additional $20 million this year to fund affordable housing, parks, open space and historic preservation thanks to the Community Preservation Act. On April 3rd, the Jamaica Plain community is invited to a public forum to share their ideas on how to spend that money. The Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation (JPNDC) organized and will lead the forum with a host of elected officials sponsoring the event and local organizations as co-sponsors. Boston adopted the Community Preservation Act (CPA) by voting in support of it in November 2016. More than 170 Massachusetts municipalities have adopted the CPA, according to the Community Preservation Coalition.
Forest Hills residents peppered a would-be developer with questions about where hundreds of car commuters will go if the LAZ Parking lot becomes a mixed-use development. There were other issues raised during a community meeting Wednesday about "The Residences at Forest Hills," but much of the discussion revolved around parking. The three-building, six-story development would add 252 apartments and townhouses plus 5,500 square feet of retail to Forest Hills' burgeoning stock of mid-rise transit-oriented developments. The meeting was held in the fellowship hall at St. Andrew Church, just up Orchardhill Road from the proposed development.
On a sun-flooded morning, hundreds of families from Bromley Heath apartments sat in overflow chairs in a crowded tent to listen as Mayor Marty Walsh and Boston Housing Authority William McGonagle renamed the development Mildred C. Hailey Apartments. Joining them was Anna Mae Cole, a friend and comrade in arms for over 60 years and former chair of the Bromley Heath Tenant Management Corporation that Mrs. Hailey (and yes she was always Mrs. Hailey) directed for 40 years. Mrs. Hailey died of cancer at the age of 82 on Nov. 18, 2015 . Walsh remembered her memorial service: "At the end Billy [McGonagle] came up to me and said, "I've never asked you for anything but I'd like to ask you to name Bromley Heath after Mildred Hailey."
Plan B went into full effect at the 6th Plan JP/Rox workshop last Wednesday as 50 protesters marched into the room clapping. Just as the emcee, Senior Planner Marie Mercurio, was concluding her opening remarks, the protesters grabbed what they called "the people's mic" to "fight not for profit but for the community." For over an hour, "Keep it 100% for Egleston," a well-organized and well-rehearsed group, listed its demands to stop the Boston Redevelopment Authority-sponsored Plan JP/Rox for three months. Plan JP/Rox is a once-in-a-generation rezoning process for the whole Washington Street and Columbus Avenue corridors in Jamaica Plain and Roxbury. The protest group, which is comprised both young people as well as adults, alternated speakers using a call-and-response format.
(Jamaica) Plain and simple -- what is the biggest issue in Jamaica Plain? At the Wake Up the Earth Festival, Jamaica Plain News asked people to name what they think is the biggest issue in JP. And several topics continued to come up. Overwhelmingly people said either gentrification or housing affordability. Other issues were named as you can see below.