News

Bowdoin St. garage permit gets legal examination

The on-going controversy over a permit granted to a Bowdoin St. auto shop reached a new level of bureaucratic entanglement Tuesday afternoon when the City’s Zoning Board of Appeal declined to rule on a permit issued by the Inspectional Services Department that allows the shop to legally operate as a repair shop.

The Board of Appeal voted to move the issue to the City’s Legal department in order to closer examine the legality of the permit and the shop’s operations.  Read more

Introducing Studio 916 on Dot Ave., one man’s gift to the arts locally

Fifteen hundred square feet may seem like an ample amount of floor space, until you hear all that William Harris wants to do with it. Harris, who spent the first 28 years of his life living on Grant Street, has returned to his Columbia stomping grounds to open a brand- new gallery and arts center.

“I’m putting my heart, my soul, and my wallet behind this project,” says Harris, who has been repeatedly warned not to expect much of a return, monetarily at least, on his investment.  Read more

Fed $, elections help push charter school

When Boston School officials tried to save money this year by cutting costs in student transportation, they met with strong resistance from parents who put more hopes in choice, even with the need for a bus ride.  Read more

Big changes ahead at St. Peter’s

The St. Peter’s Convent has been for sale for several years.The St. Peter’s Convent has been for sale for several years.
A community meeting to discuss new educational programs headed to Dorchester turned into a forum over the future of St. Peter’s Church last Wednesday night, July 15 as parishioners and community activists believe the moves could be are precursors to the eventual closure of the parish church.

“We’re here to stay,” at St. Peter’s Church, parish administrator Fr. Jack Ahern told the Reporter last week. The Boston Archdiocese recently began renovations of the church basement, which Ahern says is an investment on the part of Cardinal O’Malley in the parish and the Bowdoin St. neighborhood. “I’m not going to spend close to $200,000 putting bathrooms and elevators in the lower church because we want to close it next year,” Ahern said.  Read more

Aggressive push to sell Blue Hill Ave proposal

By 
Alex Owens, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 23, 2009

AloisiTransportation Secretary James Aloisi had his Charlie Card at the ready as he boarded the 28 bus in Mattapan Square on Wednesday morning. The main bus route from Mattapan to Roxbury had one more commuter than usual Wednesday morning as state Secretary of Transportation James Aloisi Jr. rode the Rt. 28 bus and spoke with riders about controversial changes he has planned for the Blue Hill Ave. corridor.

Accompanied by state senator Sonia Chang-Diaz, Aloisi ate breakfast at Brother's Café in Mattapan Square before hopping on the bus for the ride to the Dudley Square Silverline station. “I don’t think people have paid attention to this neighborhood for a long time, so people are a bit skeptical, when we come in with this big idea,” Aloisi said.  Read more

Bayside Expo Center sets stage for return

The new owners of Bayside Exposition Center have hired a Virginia-based firm to book and manage shows and other events at the largely dormant venue on the Columbia Point waterfront. The Ballantine Managament Group, owned by a man who once worked as Bayside’s executive director, has begun booking consumer shows — including September’s Boston Home Show.  Read more

Local church preaches and prays a little differently

Most Dorchester residents don’t necessarily equate prayer with free fruit beverages, but at least one local house of worship is thinking outside the box and beyond the altar to take their message to the streets in unorthodox ways.  Read more

Menino makes pitch for more charter schools

Mayor Thomas Menino’s proposal to convert city schools labeled underperforming into “in-district” charter schools would be a boon to Dorchester and Mattapan, city and business officials said this week.  Read more

Police: Sudan Street residents chase down, capture burglar

Boston Police report a Sudan Street resident awoken by a loud noise early Tuesday morning went downstairs to find a man standing there.  Read more

Mt Washington Bank Acquired by East Boston Savings Bank

Mt. Washington Cooperative Bank has been acquired by Meridian Interstate Bancorp, Inc., a holding company which owns East Boston Savings Bank, the Reporter has learned. Under terms of the purchase, the two banks will retain their identities, with Mt. Washington becoming an operating division of Meridian Interstate headed by Edward J. Merritt, current Mt Washington President and CEO.  Read more

Police: Dorchester teen in Roxbury bar before he opened fire

Boston Police officials told the Boston Licensing Board today that Charkeem Hyatt, 19, of Dorchester, was in Packy Connor's Pub on Blue Hill Avenue before a disagreement spilled outside and he opened fire, shooting another man and three women who got in his way.

The board today reinstated the bar's license following an emergency suspension - but ordered the bar to close at midnight, instead of 2 a.m. Two of the board's three members said they would consider sterner action if the hear testimony from witnesses that Hyatt was in the bard early Friday.  Read more

Dorchester teen charged in incident that left four shot outside troubled Roxbury bar

Boston police report arresting Charkeem Hyatt, 19, of Dorchester, following a shooting spree outside Packy Connor's Pub on Blue Hill Avenue early this morning that ended, police say, with officers and Hyatt exchanging gunfire.  Read more

Ten free events to fill out your summer calendar

Classic park, classical music: The Boston Landmarks Orchestra returns to Dorchester Park for a free concert on Sunday, Aug. 9.Classic park, classical music: The Boston Landmarks Orchestra returns to Dorchester Park for a free concert on Sunday, Aug. 9.You say the summer doldrums have got you down? Cheer up now: There’s plenty of fun to be had in the neighborhoods this month and next, especially now that monsoon season seems to have passed. And as the late, great John Belushi might have said: “It don’t cost nothing.” Here’s a sampler of free, outdoor events that will fill out your summer calendar. Tell ‘em the Reporter sent you.  Read more

Builder outlines plans for a four-story apartment building in Fields Corner

By 
Mike Deehan, Contributing Editor
Jul. 16, 2009

Plans for a new housing development on Adams Street were presented by the Boston Redevelopment Authority at a neighborhood meeting on Tuesday evening at the Kit Clark Senior Services Center in Fields Corner. The proposed building would be built at the corner of Adams and Dickens streets, at 252-254 Adams Street and would stand four stories tall. The building would provide 15 individual single and two bedroom units.  Read more

One-day Irish Festival in the works for Adams Corner

It’s earned a reputation as the center of Irish Dorchester and remains one of the region’s most identifiably Irish-American enclaves. Adams Corner is likely to cement that image this fall as residents and merchants work to stage a one-day Irish Festival over Columbus Day weekend.
A committee of civic leaders has been working on the festival idea for months— and this week went public with a website and initial details for the October 11th event.  Read more

Future of Franklin Park Zoo remains in limbo

By 
Mike Deehan and Gintautas Dumcius, Contributing Editors
Jul. 16, 2009

A fiscal tug-of-war between Governor Deval Patrick and the Legislature over the future of the Franklin Park Zoo has left the institution’s fate in the balance and some in Dorchester talking about the zoo’s significance to the community and wondering about the effect of it being permanently shuttered.  Read more

Thai boxing at Uphams Corner

By 
Mike Deehan, Contributing Editor
Jul. 16, 2009

Kickboxing in Uphams: Colin Dwyer, a native of Adams Corner, worked the heavy bag at Boston Muay Thai Academy on Monday. Photo by Mike DeehanKickboxing in Uphams: Colin Dwyer, a native of Adams Corner, worked the heavy bag at Boston Muay Thai Academy on Monday. Photo by Mike DeehanTucked in the back of retrofitted factory space and set at the end of a labyrinthine series of hallways and staircases, the Boston Muay Thai Academy in Uphams Corner has been training beginner, amateur and professional fighters the ways of Thai boxing since opening its doors in 2004.  Read more

Communities of color seen as key to mayor’s race

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, Contributing Editor
Jul. 16, 2009

It was a scathing editorial: In a 624-word April harangue titled “Change is coming,” the Bay State Banner, a local paper chiefly focused on the region’s African-American community, ripped into Mayor Thomas Menino. The author, Melvin Miller, took the incumbent to task after the Boston Redevelopment Authority tabled a Roxbury project that memorialized a local arts educator, Elma Lewis.  Read more

Produce with side of art at Ashmont Farmers' Market

By 
Chris Harding, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 16, 2009

“Hey, you want some art with those artichokes?”
Last Friday, a 9 foot-tall papier-mâché giraffe made by kids in the Dot Art greeted customers who flocked to the opening of the brand new farmers market in Peabody
Square/ Ashmont Station. The copper-and-gold spotted herbivore seemed to indicate that the weekly bazaar was the place to feed the spirit as well as the belly.
Market organizers —which included St. Mark’s Area Main Street (SMAMS)— looked to other successful ventures for ideas on which vendors to invite.  Read more

Suspect in Milton bank robbery nabbed on Gallivan by BPD

Cycle crashes after police chaseCycle crashes after police chaseA suspect in a bank robbery in East Milton this morning was apprehended after a chase through the neighborhood ended in a crash on Gallivan Boulevard. A passing motorist shot a photo (left) of the suspect's Vespa scooter, which crashed in a parking lot in front of storefronts across from St. Brendan's Church.
Eyewitness accounts say that the suspect weaved through sidestreets in the Cedar Grove neighborhood before the pursuit ended. The suspect —identified by Milton Police as 35 year-old William Donovan— was arrested as he tried to evade capture behind the Muffler Man building next to Toohig Park. The events unfolded just before 10 a.m. on Wednesday.  Read more

Neighbors celebrate new-and-improved Byrne Playground

By 
Alex Owens, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 14, 2009

Jammin' at Byrne Playground: Photo by Alex OwensJammin' at Byrne Playground: Photo by Alex Owens  Read more

Peter Meade to lead new Kennedy Institute on US Senate

Peter MeadePeter MeadeDorchester native Peter Meade will be the founding president and CEO of a newly created institute named for Senator Edward M. Kennedy that will be housed on Columbia Point. Meade, a close friend and ally of the state's senior senator, is presently the managing director of the Boston-based public relations firm Rasky Baerlein.
Meade tells the Reporter that he will take charge of the non-profit Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate next month. The institute will eventually be housed in a new building that will be built on Columbia Point, close to the existing John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum. The institute will be part of the UMass-Boston campus and will be built on four acres of land owned by the university.  Read more

Patrick: Override of Zoo cuts would undermine health care

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, Contributing Editor
Jul. 13, 2009

If the Legislature decides to override his veto of funds for the Franklin Park Zoo, Gov. Deval Patrick said his plan to keep health insurance coverage for 30,000 legal immigrants will be endangered.  Read more

Flames cook charged with stabbing another cook

Boston Police say a cook at Flames, 663 Morton St. in Mattapan, ended an argument in the kitchen Saturday afternoon by plunging a knife into another cook's stomach.

The victim was taken to a local hospital and is expected to recover. Wellesley Clarke, 55, was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

Man arrested for January murder of 16 year-old

A 20 year-old from Dorchester has been arrested for the broad-daylight murder of a 16 year-old last January, Boston Police announced this afternoon. In a statement, the BPD says that Marques Kersey has been identified as the "person responsible" for the shooting of 16 year-old Torey Evans on January 16, 2009. Kersey is currently being held at the Dedham House of Correction on an un-related charge. Evans was shot to death outside of 2092 Dorchester Ave. at approximately 3:30 p.m.  Read more