Civics

Hopkins Street residents redefine their community with a garden

By 
India Smith, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 15, 2014

Garden in Dorchester Honors Efforts Against Violence from Chris Lovett on Vimeo.

On Saturday, July 12, residents of Hopkins Street hosted Mayor Marty Walsh, other officials and peace activists from around the city to dedicate a parcel of city-owned land as the Steven P. Odom Serenity Garden. Graced by ancient oak and mulberry trees, the shady spot will now offer residents a gathering place and a chance to commune with nature.

According to event organizer Faylis Matos, the garden represents the shared vision of the neighborhood group Redefining Our Community, known simply as ROC.

“Often Dorchester is stigmatized as a place of darkness, a dangerous place,” said Matos. “But we won’t allow people who don’t live here to define us.”  Read more

Martin Richard Foundation seeks runners for NYC marathon

By 
Staff
Jul. 14, 2014

Team MR8 — the Martin W. Richard Charitable Foundation— is recruiting charity runners for the New York City Marathon this fall. It will be the second major race effort for the organization, named for the Dorchester 8 year-old who was killed in the April 2013 terror attack on the Boston Marathon.

Individuals who wish to “Run for Martin” can apply online by visiting www.TeamMR8.org and clicking the “Run New York” icon.  Read more

Organizing 101: New Civic Academy effort starts this weekend

One of the more intriguing initiatives of the Walsh administration kicks off this Saturday on the South Boston waterfront. The mayor’s newly branded Civic Academy will offer a class on how residents can use technology and social media to plug into City Hall. The three-hour “class” will be held at District Hall, a venue that is billed as “a civic space where the innovation community can gather and exchange ideas.”  Read more

Charter school wants to buy T lot in Mattapan Square and move there

MBTA Lot: Roughly two dozen vehicles were parked in the T’s Mattapan lot early Monday afternoon. 	Lauren Dezenski photoMBTA Lot: Roughly two dozen vehicles were parked in the T’s Mattapan lot early Monday afternoon. Lauren Dezenski photo

A Hyde Park-based charter school is in talks to buy an MBTA parking lot in Mattapan Square and build a new school next to the T trolley and bus station along River Street. While the $1.5 million sale to Boston Preparatory Charter Public School, if executed, would fill the space at an often half-empty parking lot with a new building, it would also squelch earlier hopes for using the state-owned land as the anchor for a mixed-use, transit-oriented development – something that state lawmakers say should remain the top priority for the site.  Read more

Coming soon: A 10-day red light on Morton Street

By 
Lauren Dezenski, Reporter Staff
Jul. 9, 2014

Work on a replacement bridge for Morton Street is going on this week. The roadway will close for ten days next month to fix the new span in place. Photo by Bill Forry

Bridge replacement work to shut section Aug 8-17

For ten days next month – from Aug. 8 to Aug. 17 – the well-traveled section of Morton Street above the railroad tracks and near the Norfolk Street intersection will be closed to traffic as the state lays in place a new Morton Street bridge. While rerouting plans for buses are known, transportation officials will present the detour details for all residents, businesses, and travelers at a meeting tonight (July 10) at 6 o’clock at the Economy Plumbing site at 875 Morton St.  Read more

Summertime fun secured once again

Summer kicks-off at Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester: The ZAC Foundation is running a water safety ZAC Camp at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dorchester this week.Summer kicks-off at Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester: The ZAC Foundation is running a water safety ZAC Camp at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dorchester this week.

1990 was a tough year in Dorchester. The murder rate was at an all-time high, drug-fueled gang warfare was a constant threat, and teens were dropping left and right in shootings that seemed particularly menacing for their randomness. The level of violence that we experience today in Boston is bad enough, but in the early ‘90s, it was far worse and seemed to be spiraling out of control.

It was in that environment that the Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester – then known as the Colonel Daniel Marr Club – started an ambitious summertime program aimed at keeping our kids and teens as safe as possible while they still had a fun break from school. They did it by extending their hours until 11 p.m. for older teens and arranging rides home for many of those who lived on streets that were unsafe.  Read more

$250k in state budget for Ventura Park rehab

State Senator Linda Dorcena Forry and State Rep. Dan Cullinane are shown in the playground area of Ventura Park.

Ventura Park’s playground equipment and baseball field are about to get a major upgrade, thanks to a $250,000 shot of state funding promoted by two Dorchester legislators.  Read more

In Lower Mills, re-vamp planned coming for condo complex bid

The Molly Funeral Home property, foreground, along Washington Street would be replaced with a new mixed-use development built by a new owner under a plan that is emerging this summer in Lower Mills. Photo by Bill Forry

An emerging plan to build a multi-story condominium complex along a key stretch of Washington Street in Lower Mills is getting re-vamped this week after civic and merchant leaders pushed back against an initial proposal that they said was too tall and dense for the neighborhood’s expanding business district.  Read more

Polish Triangle weighs flurry of housing plans

By 
Lauren Dezenski, Reporter Staff
Jun. 26, 2014

This building at 24 Rawson St. is to be razed along with abutting 27 Washburn St. in a joint project that will potentially create two seven-unit buildings with below-ground parking by developers James Baker and Douglas George. Photo by Bill Forry

Dorchester’s Polish Triangle is ground zero for the housing development spilling into Boston’s largest neighborhood. Case in point: At last week’s meeting of the John W. McCormack Civic Association, which oversees Dot’s northernmost village commonly called the Polish Triangle, members entertained four development proposals accounting for a total of 45 housing units, the bulk of which is within a radius of a block and a half.  Read more