Mark Ciommo responds to the allston02134 City Council questionnaire

1) Do you support the creation of a Boston Planning Department?
I would vote in support of holding hearings to evaluate the creation of an independent planning department for the City of Boston.

2) Should height limits in the North Allston Strategic Framework be strictly applied to Harvard’s proposed buildings?
The NASF height restrictions should be adhered to. However, any flexibility built in to the framework should only be linked to community benefits and support.

3) Should City Council approval be required before a university can purchase property in Boston?
It would be great if the City Council could have influence on such purchases. It is my understanding the City Council has no authority on property conveyances. Universities should refrain from purchasing any residential property in the City.

4) What are your thoughts about a possible Charlesview relocation?
It could make sense in light of the structural and environmental defects of the current complex. However, the following conditions must be met:
1. The relocated residents are satisfied with the location and apartment amenities.
2. The abutters of the new location are satisfied that the density and impact to the neighborhood makes sense.
3. A consensus is reached that the quality of life for the residents and the neighborhood is improved.

4) What should be the future of the Speedway property on Western Ave.?
The Department of Conservation and Recreation has oversight of this property. I would work with our state elected officials to negotiate a conveyance of this property to benefit the community and preserve its historical significance.

5) How do you feel about the vacant Harvard-owned properties in North Allston and North Brighton?
All Harvard owned property should be properly maintained inside and out. There should be efforts made to have their buildings occupied by businesses that will employ our residents and enhance small business opportunities. The Task Force has formed a sub-committee to examine this issue. Harry Mattison, Millie McLaughlin, Mary Helen Black are members representing the community.

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