The management team for the proposed retail marijuana business that wants to go into the old Milky Way spot on Centre Street will be speaking at two neighborhood groups in the next week. Core Empowerment's leadership has been performing its due diligence to inform the public about its proposed retail store/social justice museum. Representatives have been meeting with neighborhood groups, including the Jamaica Plain Business and Professional Association in October. "Things have been going well. We continue to get local support for the project, so we're thrilled by the reception," said Core's Chief Operating Officer Tomas Gonzales to Jamaica Plain News.
The once-in-a-generation planning effort that goes by the name "Plan JP/Rox" has started to produce specifics about what our neighborhood will look like. "We've listened to you. Now it's time to respond to you with your ideas wrapped up into planning policies," announced senior BRA architect John Dalzell at a packed Saturday morning workshop, the fifth in a series which began in September 2015 to plan the future of the Washington Street corridor from Forest Hills to Jackson Square. Because there's so much information to digest, we've broken down this report into several posts. You can read about overarching concerns here in this story.
"Connecting people with places" was the theme of the fourth workshop in the Plan JP/Rox held on Thursday at English High School. Of all the workshops in of the planning process this was most egalitarian; low income or high income, hotel maid or money manager, everyone uses the sidewalks, the streets or some form of transit to get to work, to school and home. It was also the most interactive and personal; over 100 sat around tables and marked on maps how they get around their neighborhood to their special places or how they got to that night's meeting. "Mobility. Getting around.
State Senator Sonia Chang-Díaz, while adamant that she did not use her influence to cut through city red tape on a disputed renovation of her Forest Hills home, said Monday her architect admits he drew up the addition to be too tall. The revelation came amid a detailed conversation Monday with Chang-Díaz and her husband, Bryan Hirsch, on the back patio at 3-5 Bremen Terrace. Next-door neighbor Brian Wells sued the couple in April, claiming the project they'd proposed to the neighborhood wasn't the one actually being built. The parties agreed to a settlement in June. The case was scheduled to be heard by the city's Board of Zoning Appeals on Tuesday morning. The settlement, among other points, calls for Chang-Díaz and Hirsch to chop 14 inches off the existing roofline, which would result in an overall shortening of the house by seven inches.
Mayor Marty Walsh has launched the first city-wide planning effort since 1965. As anyone involved with the politics of development knows, these days projects pretty much get considered one-by-one. The effort will ramp up over the next few years, leading to a blueprint for what the city should be like in 2030. The city has a fancy new Web site devoted to the effort. If you Tweet, the city wants folks to use #ImagineBos.
JP Centre/South Main Streets and the Jamaica Pond Association are hosting a series of meetings to discuss what vision the community has for land use along the corridor. How many stories should most buildings be on the stretch from Eliot to Pond? These issues will be front and center at a community meeting on Monday, 7 p.m., at First Baptist Church, 633 Centre St. On Thursday, the JP Centre/South Main Streets Spring Business Breakfast will tackle the same concerns. Here's how organizers describe Thursday's meeting:
"Do you own, manage, or work at a business in the JP Centre/South Main Streets district?
The would-be developer of 632-638 Centre St. plans to withdraw the proposal he has before the city's zoning bureaucracy. Instead, Andrew M. Zuroff plans a project that fits within existing zoning rules. In city lingo, that's "as of right." Zuroff had floated razing the one-story building 632-638 Centre St.
UPDATE: The developer is withdrawing his current plans. ~~~~~
A major change to central JP that would bring rare residential units to the Centre/South business district has started its way through the city's bureaucracy. The plan would raze the one-story building 632-638 Centre St. and transform the plot into a four-story mixed use development. The building's owner, CBG Realty LLC, is scheduled to argue for variances from zoning rules on Tuesday at City Hall.
After hearing horror stories from City Realty tenants, a JP advisory board unanimously denied approval to a project the company aims to build at 38-42 Hyde Park Ave. The Brighton-based real estate company would like to tear down a former martial arts studio and put a three-story mixed-use building in its place. Negotiations with Forest Hills neighbors had made progress, according to the Gazette. But that was before City Realty began facing significant push-back on two separate properties across the neighborhood in Egleston Square. There, the owners of seven local businesses have been given eviction notices.
Good morning, JP and welcome to your first workday of September. Here's your Morning Memo for all things Jamaica Plain for Tuesday, Sept. 2. Centre/South Main Streets First Thursday Artwalk Preview: Looking forward to Thursday, it's another First Thursday Artwalk along the Centre/South corridor. Dozens of artists and musicians will be hosted at the neighborhood's businesses from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. that day.