Allston Casting Call on Saturday

Extra! Extra! Robert DeNiro close to signing on to Hub film - BostonHerald.com

Boston Casting is holding an open call for age 18-plus Screen Actors Guild members from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday. Non-union talent will be seen from 2 to 4 p.m. Bring a photo and resume to 129 Braintree St., Allston.

Former Mexican Health Minister To Lead Harvard School of Public Health

The Harvard Crimson :: News :: Former Mexican Health Minister To Lead Harvard School of Public Health

"..."In these and other leadership roles, he has emerged over the course of his distinguished career as one of the most thoughtful, insightful, and eloquent exponents of the power of public health to change lives for the better," University President Drew G. Faust said in a letter to the school community.

While the School of Public Health is often considered one of the best in the country—its masters of public health degree is the most selective program run by any school at Harvard—Frenk will face a few significant challenges as dean.

For example, the school has outgrown its rented office space in the Longwood Medical Area, and so one of Frenk's biggest tasks will be to plan and preside over a move to new facilities in Allston."

Revilatizing Allston-Brighton

Last year, Brighton Centered blogger Mike Pahre noted that City Council candidate Alex Selvig was advertising on the Google search engine to direct people to AlexSelvig.com.

Now someone associated with the Charlesview Apartments is using the same approach and paying money to Google every time someone clicks on their sponsored link, which informs us that Charlesview is "Revilatizing Allston-Brighton".


Not only are the people responsible for this bad spellers, they are also surprisingly secretive. The charlesview.org domain is registered to domainsbyproxy.com - a company whose purpose is to conceal the normally public information about website registration and whose slogan is "Your identity is nobody's business but ours". What is there to hide?

Brighton Based Biofuels

The North Brighton building on Western Ave (formerly known as the Citizen's Bank building) is home to Mascoma Corp, a company researching cellulosic biofuels. Today they hosted Governor Patrick for the signing of the Clean Energy Biofuels Act.

Patrick signs biofuels law - The Green Blog - A Boston Globe blog on living Green in Boston

Everett St site prep today, planting this weekend - Please join us

On Saturday and Sunday, from 9am to noon, the Allston Brighton North Neighbors Forum project to rehabilitate this Everett St slope will become reality. We will be planting trees and other plants between Lincoln and Adamson Streets to begin the conversion of this neglected urban land into a safe and attractive part of our neighborhood. Everyone is welcome to be part of this project, and tools and refreshments will be provided.

Today on the site, some much needed preparatory work is being done, courtesy of Harvard University. The old juniper bushes had some serious root systems that needed to be removed before anything new could be planted. We are fortunate that Harvard has provided this heavy machinery and work crew to remove the roots and help create a fertile home for the new plants.

Looking for adventure at the Harvard Ed Portal

The attention being given to Harvard's new "Education Portal" in Allston hasn't been as breathless as the coverage of Obama's trip to Europe, but I was surprised to see that the opening of the portal was the lead story in the current edition of the Allston/Brighton TAB.

Harvard has made the portal the centerpiece of an attention-grabbing marketing campaign via email, direct mail, meeting announcements, on the http://www.harvard.edu/ homepage, and a Harvard News Office press release. Even Harvard President Drew Faust made a visit to the portal last week.

After all this effort by Harvard to draw attention to the portal, and knowing about the wonderful resources of Harvard's many world-class museums, I was expecting something more than what I found on Saturday at the "Harvard Allston Education Portal Science Adventure". What I did find was a half-dozen folding tables set up in an otherwise empty room where kids could spend a few minutes at each of four different stations.

The Alka-Seltzer film canister rocket (put water and Alka-Seltzer and water in a film canister and watch it hit the ceiling) seemed like one of the more popular activities. Click here to learn more about this experiment from Science Bob. There were crushed cookies representing different types of soil, some balloons, and a table where different liquids (water, vinegar, iodine) and powders (cornstarch, baking powder, and more Alka-Seltzer) were mixed together.

I agree with the TAB editorial that hopes that the portal will grow "into something that will have a significant impact on the lives of A-B families". There is a tremendous need for better science education, to inspire children and excite them about the scientific world, to educate people of all ages as we live in a world touched by scientific issues in almost every facet of our lives, to help our students excel in school, and more. Last year at Brighton High, only 2% of students passed the MCAS Biology test and only 5% passed the Into Physics MCAS.

It is great if there are kids learning something from the Harvard students who are working as tutors at the portal this summer. The Harvard students and many others at Harvard definitely have a lot to offer and the Portal could one day become a valued institution.

If people reading this have been to the portal, it would be great to hear about your experiences there.

Is A/B getting better for biking?

A film crew making a documentary about bike messengers and bike safety interviewed me today. They asked how Boston has become a safer place to ride a bike and if I see more people bicycling when I commute to work by bike.

About this all I can come up with is that a few of the major roads have been paved in the past few years (Western Ave, Everett St). Some of the bike path along the Charles as also been repaved. The media is writing a lot of stories about more people biking, but I don't notice any significant difference on the roads.

What are your observations? Have there been other improvements for biking near where you live or ride? Are you seeing more bikes on the road? Are you riding a bike more now than you were a year or two ago?

Church subsidized gas?

I'm not sure why a tax-exempt organization like this Brighton church is using $500 to subsidize gas prices. NY Times columnist Tom Friedman has written about why auto companies should not subsidize gas prices and that high gas prices will eventually benefit our country because they can "trigger massive investments in renewable energy." Recognizing that higher gas prices have a greater effect on people with lower incomes, he suggests a reduction in the payroll tax to balance the burden of the increased prices at the pump.

Educating people about how to reduce their energy bills or subsidizing the cost of more efficient appliances and accessories are forms of community service that could help people's bank accounts and our environment while reducing our dependence on oil.

Crossing Storrow Drive and Soldiers Field Road

With the discussion at last night's Harvard Task Force meeting and the recent Globe Watch column about getting from North Brighton and North Allston to Herter Park along the Charles River, I thought it would be interesting to compare the level of access here with the opportunities to cross to the Charles from the Back Bay.

These two areas are comparable in their length (a bit less than 1 mile) and that they are two of the only areas of Boston where a residential area is in close proximity to the river. Elsewhere there are large institutional landowners (Harvard, BU) or industrial owners like CSX (Beacon Yards railroad).


In the Back Bay, crossings to the river (going from east to west) start at Mass Ave with the ramp that leads down from the Mass Ave bridge to the river. Traditional overpasses cross near Fairfield and Dartmouth Streets. The fourth bridge over this one mile stretch of road is the iconic Arthur Fiedler Footbridge near Arlington Street. A 5th overpass is just a 1/3 of a mile away at the end of Charles Street. As a result, one need walk no more than 1/6th of a mile to get to a bridge that provides access to the Charles.



There is only one safe option to get from North Allston and North Brighton to the river, the overpass at Telford St. Perhaps because of its awkward location and uninspired design, people seem to rarely use it. Most people, even if their trip is quite short, seem to drive their cars and park in the 200+ car parking lot (by far the largest parking lot along the river).

Western Ave and Everett St make a lot of sense for safer pedestrian connections to the river. The back of Smith Field is also a possibility and Cambridge St is an important connection to the river, either for people biking to downtown or crossing into Cambridge heading towards Central Sq, MIT, or Kendall Sq.

New overpasses could cost at least a couple million dollars and as walkinginfo.org explains, pedestrian overpasses should be a "measure of last resort". Improving the at-grade crossings would be a great place to start.

Where the dirt from Western Ave is going

Filling in the rock quarry - Saugus, MA - Saugus Advertiser

Everett St greening meeting tonight

There is a meeting tonight at 6:30 to finalize plans for the planting that will soon be done on Everett St between Lincoln St and Adamson St. The meeting is at the A/B Resource Center at 367 Western Ave.

Brighton items at tomorrow's Landmarks Commission meeting

Tuesday, July 22 @ room 900, City Hall

1) 332 Chestnut Hill Ave - proposal to demolish gas station and build 5 story retail/residential building (story from the TAB) - Design Review at 3:30, discussion and vote at 5:30

2) Proposed demolition of 3 houses at 188, 192, 196 Foster St - Demolition Delay hearing at 6:25

Getting to the Charles from North Brighton

Globe Watch takes a look at the pedestrian un-friendly western end of Western Ave where our North Brighton neighbors try to get to the Charles River.

In North Brighton, uneasy passage to river - The Boston Globe

Brighton voted the most sustainable city in the country

The story is about the "other" Brighton, but the lessons about how to make older homes more energy-efficient and how people can change habits to reduce energy use are equally applicable on this side of the Atlantic.

Trying to Build a Greener Britain, Home by Home - NYTimes.com

If you are interested in the visible electric meter described in the story, one version is the PowerCost Monitor. And the Department of Energy has some interesting data about where in our homes electricity is used.

Science Complex construction update

kz1000ps stops by Western Ave, takes some pictures, talks with someone from Harvard or Turner Construction about the project, and shares lots of information.

Harvard - Allston Campus - Page 43 - archBOSTON.org

Everett St tree planting meeting on Tuesday

All are welcome to join us on Tuesday at 6:30 to finalize our design for planting in August along Everett St between Lincoln and Athol Streets. We will also discuss future additions beyond what we will do this year.

The meeting will be at the Allston/Brighton Resource Center, 367 Western Avenue (across the street from the McDonalds at the Brighton Mills shopping center).

Our planting days are scheduled for 8/2 and 8/3 (Saturday and Sunday).

Meeting w/Rep. Moran & Environment Massachusetts

Environment Massachusetts has organized an open meeting with State Rep. Mike Moran to request support for the Massachusetts Global Warming Solutions Act

Tues. July 22 12:00 pm
Massachusetts State House, Rm 544.

For more information contact Athena Laines (alaines@environmentmassachusetts.org).

Publick Theatre performances this weekend

The Publick Theatre's summer season is underway at Herter Park (at the outdoor amphitheater near the intersection of Everett St and Soldiers Field Rd). This weekend they will be performing Chekhov's The Seagull and next weekend Hay Fever by Noel Coward.

Performances run through mid-September and are a great chance to enjoy some fresh air and drama on the banks of the Charles.

Help design Library Park virtually

To help design the park to be built behind the Honan Library, the group Hub2 is organizing a set of meetings where neighbors will be able to experience a computer simulation of the park and experiment with different designs. No computer experience is needed - staff will be present to guide participants through the process.

Upcoming group design sessions at 175 North Harvard Street will be
Saturday, July 19 from 1:30- 3:30 PM
Thursday, August 6 from 6:30-8:00 PM
Saturday, August 9 from 1:30-3:30 PM

For more information contact Peter Bowne at 617-869-6720, pbowne@hub2.org

You can learn about last night's session at Gene Koo's blog
http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/vvvv/2008/07/18/hub2-engages-allston-residents-in-designing-honan-library-park/

Harvard Provost Hopes Allston Can Be “Switzerland”

Hyman Hopes Allston Can Be “Switzerland” to “Balkanized” Harvard : Harvard Magazine

Switzerland is a big improvement over Western Siberia! Swiss cheese for everyone!

Christine Heenan named Harvard VP for Government, Community and Public Affairs

Christine Heenan named Harvard VP for Government, Community and Public Affairs — The Harvard University Gazette

Ms. Heenan will replace Alan Stone in a position where she will greatly be able to influence Harvard's relationship with its Allston neighbors. In addition to being founder and president of the Clarendon Group she served as Communications Director for the Hillary Clinton for President campaign earlier this year.

Many people have suggested that a meaningful, mutually beneficial partnership with Harvard could focus on improving elementary and high school education in Allston. So it is a pleasant coincidence that, according to this profile in Rhode Island Monthly, Ms. Heenan has a deep interest in urban education and would "love to be directly involved in the motivating and educating of kids."

Amazing what can grow in a sidewalk

Lincoln St truck rental request withdrawn

Thank you to the many people who called and wrote City Hall to voice your concern about the Public Storage proposal to add truck rental to their Lincoln St warehouse. City Councilor Mark Ciommo, Dan Roan in the Mayor's Office, and the BRA joined with us to oppose the variance.

The developer, probably realizing that they were unlikely to get approval, is withdrawing the application.

There is no need to attend the hearing on Tuesday morning at City Hall.

Local earmarks in proposed State budget

Governor Patrick yesterday vetoed $122.5 million from the state budget approved by legislators earlier this month. Here are items in the Conference Committee Budget specifically mentioning A/B that was sent to the Governor.

not less than $75,000 shall be expended for the Herter Center in the Christian A. Herter Park located in Allston-Brighton section of the city of Boston for the purpose of preserving educational and cultural materials that benefit the commonwealth

$50,000 shall be expended for the Allston-Brighton Vocational Center (VAC) for the continued operation of a job training and placement center;

not less than $25,000 be expended for the Area Planning Action Council (APAC) in Allston-
Brighton to implement a Project Place Program to assist in the operation of a career development department

not less than $25,000 shall be expended for the Allston-Brighton Community Development Corporation’s continued operation of a grant program to enhance housing quality standards;

not less than $75,000 shall be expended for the continued operation of computer technology centers at the Commonwealth Housing Development, the Jackson Mann Community Center and the Power Up Center at Brighton High School

$50,000 shall be expended for the Oak Square YMCA in the Brighton section of the city of Boston

a Total Immersion program in conjunction with the probation departments of the... Brighton division of the district court, and other district courts

Boston Green Award recipient defeats poison ivy

A nice story about Allston resident Don Lubin and his volunteer efforts to remove poison ivy from Ringer Park.

Boston Green Award recipient defeats poison ivy - The Boston Globe

Bike rentals in Boston a la Paris?

The astounding success of the VĂ©lib’ bicycle rental program in Paris is the focus this story in the Times. With 20,600 bikes, 1,450 rental stations, 27.5 million trips in its first year, and 120,000 trips a day, it is staggering how popular this program has become.

Boston is also thinking about bike rentals and I think this could be a wonderful part of the transportation solution for Harvard's campus expansion. City Councilor John Connolly has filed legislation and the Mayor's administration is also working on it. You can read a note from John and comments from others over at the Blue Mass Group website.

Greening Boston's taxi fleet & Browning A/B and some land use obersvations

How ironic that George Bachrach, president of the Environmental League of Massachusetts, has a column in today's Globe about the environmental damage caused by gas-guzzling vehicles. On Tuesday he will be in front of Boston's Zoning Board of Appeals seeking a variance to allow people to rent gas-guzzling vehicles from the Public Storage warehouse on Lincoln Street in Brighton.

The greening of Boston's taxi fleet - The Boston Globe

As the commenter mentions, in the abstract the idea of renting trucks when people need the extra capacity is much better than people always driving that are much bigger than what they need to drive most of the time. In the same vein, storage facilities are better than people buying houses big enough to store things that they only rarely need to access.

But just as Allston and Brighton already have more storage facilities than we need, we also have more truck rental businesses than we need. We also get more air pollution than the average neighborhood from the cars and trucks on the Mass Pike, Soldiers Field Rd, etc. And Lincoln Street is a particularly dangerous street which doesn't need any more truck traffic.

And finally, from an environmental viewpoint, makes no sense to put storage warehouses (which people visit rarely) in our urban centers. Using this land for housing and commercial space, to let people live closer to their jobs and reduce commuting distances, would be preferable. Housing for something like 75 people could have been built on the 1.2 acres used for the storage warehouse on Lincoln St. If those people worked in nearby job centers in Boston or Cambridge (and especially if they were able to walk, bike, or take public transportation to work) we would following best practices recommended by many sustainability experts. The Urban Land Institute's paper Growing Cooler: Evidence on Urban Development and Climate Change is a great overview of how compact cities with housing and jobs in close proximity are key to significant improvements in our environment.

Learn to be a better bike rider

MassBike: The Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition has some upcoming classes in Boston on July 23 and 27. Click the link to get the details.

Harvard Education Portal & Pool details

Here is some more info to follow up posts from earlier this week:

The portal at 175 N Harvard St will be open 3-6 in the afternoon, Monday-Thursday.

Movie night at the portal on Wednesday, July 16. Finding Nemo at 5:30, Gattaca at 8.

Science Fair @ 3:00 on July 26 at the portal.

Blodgett Pool open 5-8 in the evening, Monday-Friday through Labor Day. Get a membership card at the Ed Portal (proof of North Allston / North Brighton residency required).

It can get boring sitting in traffic...

Man Fell Asleep At Brighton Stoplight, Officers Say

A different scene at the Kells tonight

Boston Guerrilla Queer Bar - guerrilla queer bar

The Guerrilla Queer Bar team plans to descend upon an unsuspecting straight bar once a month (tonight its the Kells) and turn it into a gay bar for the night.

Mary Lyon School may add a pilot high school

District to vet 2 pilot school plans - The Boston Globe

Want more trucks on Lincoln St?

If not, you might want to write the Zoning Board of Appeals and ask them to deny the request by Public Storage at 156 Lincoln St to add truck rental to their business.

The hearing is Tuesday morning, so letters need to be mailed ASAP to:
Board of Appeal, 1010 Massachusetts Ave, 4th floor, Boston, MA 02118
You can send a fax to the Board of Appeal at 617-635 2918. It is also important to let our City Councilor Mark Ciommo (mark.ciommo@cityofboston.gov) and our neighborhood coordinator in the Mayor's Office (Daniel.Roan@cityofboston.gov) know how you feel about this. They tell me they haven't yet decided if they will support or oppose this request, so your feedback can help make a difference.

Lincoln Street, with its existing traffic, is already too dangerous. In June 2004 a bicyclist on Lincoln St was hit by a car and killed near the intersection with Franklin St. In February 2005 a car crashed through the brick wall on Lincoln St near the intersection with Everett St. There have been other deadly accidents on Lincoln Street in the past and there have been many more accidents where cars have gone off the road and damaged property.

Two years ago when the developers of the storage warehouse at 156 Lincoln St sought community support and zoning relief there was no mention of truck rental. To the contrary, they told the community that they were creating a low traffic use. They should not be able to go back on their promise just a few weeks after completing construction and opening for business. Truck rental is not a low traffic use. People driving to our neighborhood to rent trucks, driving out of our neighborhood in the rented truck, returning the rental truck, and leaving our neighborhood in their personal vehicle creates 4 vehicle trips for each rental. This is not the "low traffic" use we were promised.

There are several businesses in Allston and Brighton that already offer truck rental. In my opinion, the residents of Allston and Brighton don't need more trucks in our neighborhood on an already unsafe street.

Upcoming zoning and licensing hearings

45 Harriet St - Extend living space into the attic, erect a full dormer, and renovate
156 Lincoln St - Change the legal occupancy from a storage facility to a storage facility and truck rental use

14 Ridgemont St - Create off street parking for two vehicles

95 Everett St - Change the legal occupancy from a garage and spray booth to an adult education center.

Harvard University (1320 Soldiers Fields Road) - Change the legal occupancy from offices to offices and research labs, and renovate

Blanchard’s (99-103 Harvard Ave) has petitioned to amend the description of the licensed business- From – With entrance at 103 Harvard Avenue, rear door to alley for stock two rooms on street floor, cellar for stock; employee lounge and office; office on second floor.To – With entrance at 103 Harvard Avenue; in three rooms on street floor with employee lounge and office; rear door to alley for stock; delivery /receiving area with door at south side of building; cellar for stock; tasting room and office; office on second floor.

More info at http://www.cityofboston.gov/ons/pdfs/allstonbright.pdf

Harvard pool access for community members

Taking a step towards the summer athletic facility memberships that Boston College offers to community residents, it was a pleasant surprise to learn at last night's Harvard Allston Task Force meeting that Harvard will open its swimming pool to its neighbors on evenings during the summer starting on Monday. To participate, go to the education portal at 175 N Harvard St (bring proof of residency) to get a membership card that can be used at the portal and pool.

Harvard Allston Task Force meets tonight

Tonight's meeting will focus on adult education and workforce development opportunities. The meeting will be from 6:30-8:30 at the Honan Library and will be preceded by a meeting of the Construction Management Subcommittee from 5:30-6:30.

A/B Green Space Advocates summer picnic - July 16

The Allston/Brighton Green Space Advocates are having their annual potluck picnic on Wednesday, July 16 from 6:30-8:30 at the Honan Apartments, 57 Everett St. All are welcome to attend and learn more about projects to make Allston and Brighton greener. After dinner there will there will be a tour of the St. Anthony's Church property to discuss an upcoming project. RSVP to Kate Jordan at 617-787-3874 x216.

Vertical sculptures installed today at Lincoln St Green Strip

ABNNF meets tonight

6:30 - 8:30 pm @ the Allston/Brighton Resource Center - 367 Western Ave

Agenda
- Holton St Corridor update
- Everett St tree planting design
- Public Realm discussion to prepare for July 23 Community-Wide Plan meeting
- Overview of community survey coming later this summer

Smith Field vandalism


History of public access to the water

A few years ago, the Globe wrote this long and glowing profile of Vivien Li, executive director of the Boston Harbor Association. According to their website, "The Boston Harbor Association (TBHA) is the leading harbor advocacy group working to promote a clean, alive, and accessible Boston Harbor". I agree that making the harbor more accessible is great, and it is just as great to make the Charles more accessible.

Another interesting reference is The Massachusetts Public Waterfront Act, also known as Chapter 91.
The Commonwealth formally established the program in 1866, but the philosophy behind Chapter 91 dates back to the earliest days of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, most notably in the Colonial Ordinances of 1641-1647.

The Colonial Ordinances codified the "public trust doctrine," a legal principle that dates back nearly 2000 years, which holds that the air, the sea and the shore belong not to any one person, but rather to the public at large.

In fact, these notions date back thousands of years to the concepts of civil law in ancient Rome.

For some things by the law of nature are common to all; some are public; some belong to corporate bodies, and some belong to no one...

By the law of nature these things are common to mankind---the air, running water, the sea, and consequently the shores of the sea.

Too many geese

Some communities are "Trying Everything Against Geese", and it would be nice if the DCR was doing a lot more at Herter Park on this subject.

At some other parks, DCR has installed fencing between the water and grass to prevent the geese from coming on shore to graze.

It's not so much the geese themselves but the huge amount of waste they leave behind that would be nice to see gone.

BC Neighbors Forum story in today's Globe

BC neighbors plot new push to corral dorms - The Boston Globe

Why is a New Bedford pol ripping Community Rowing?

I think we should be celebrating Community Rowing's success creating a new facility in Brighton where members of the public will be able to learn a new sport, exercise, and be close to nature. A few million dollars of low-interest loans (not grants), in the grand scheme of the State's budget, doesn't seem unwarranted to support the efforts of this non-profit organization.

Price tag aside, $15m boathouse aimed for public - The Boston Globe

State Senator Mark C. Montigny questioned why a project with such well-heeled backing needs state help at all. "I would hardly say rowing is high on the priority list" for the state, the Democrat from New Bedford said in a recent telephone interview. Especially for a group that "thinks rowing is the best thing since golf."

It was the same Senator Montigny who wrote the following in legislation last year, so what's wrong with promoting recreational activity in a rowing shell?

"the commonwealth has a responsibility to promote educational and recreational activity as well as exercise opportunities to enhance the health and welfare of our citizens"

If Mr. Montigny or anyone else is really concerned about State money and use of the Charles River, read this 2004 story about the leases that Harvard and other universities, with a lot more money that Community Rowing, have for their private boat houses on the Charles. For starters, how about Harvard getting a 99 year lease for $500 a year to lease the Weld Boathouse?

Some people at Universal Hub think the previous paragraph is an attempt to pick on Harvard. That isn't my intent. My point is that if we are so worried about maximizing revenue and minimizing expenses along the Charles River, attacking a small subsidy for Community Rowing is not the place to start. Many institutions and organizations use the Charles River in a lot of ways for their own public, semi-public, or private benefit. The public organizations like Community Rowing, Charles River Canoe and Kayak, and Community Boating deserve public support, as far as I am concerned. Something seems out of balance to me when public canoe and kayak rentals are done from a tiny hut with a dock that barely floats, while within a mile there are multiple private, first-class, boat houses. Maybe public access to a public resource should at least be in the same ballpark as the private access to the same public resource.

A/B businesses team up for negotiation workshop

Thanks to Allston's Emerald Necklace Martial Arts and Brighton-based Vantage Partners (a consulting firm spin-off of the Harvard Negotiation Project) for the free negotiation workshop that they gave last month. We spent the evening learning and talking about theory and practice of communicating and negotiating and received free copies of two books, Getting to Yes and Difficult Conversations. The idea that has been often in my mind since the class is that good negotiation should produce a fair outcome that maximizes the total benefit received by all parties. Key aspects of negotiation include discussion of all parties needs, concerns, desires, hopes, and fears, followed by joint brainstorming to uncover multiple possible options for the outcome of the negotiation.

Too often it seems like we assume that the benefit of one group must come at the expense of the other - the better it is for you, the worse it is for me. This is like the graph on the left where the outcome is a zero-sum game. For each bit of improvement that you get I lose an equal amount (and vice-versa).

But a better approach can yield a more mutually beneficial curve like the one in the middle. Maybe even in some cases we could strive for the right-hand graph, where an improvement for one group has no negative effect on the other. For any of this to be possible, everyone involved must be willing to actually negotiate in good faith, something that doesn't always seem to happen as much as it could.


Mayor critical of BC expansion plans

Mayor calls BC's $1b expansion plan an intrusion - The Boston Globe
"Escalating a simmering town-gown feud, Mayor Thomas M. Menino denounced Boston College's $1 billion expansion plan yesterday as an intrusion into the Brighton neighborhood and accused university leaders of arrogance in pursuing development goals with little regard for residents' concerns."

242 Western Ave update

Unfortunately, what has replaced Herb Goodman's used car dealer on Western Ave adds no more value to the neighborhood than Herb's did (and the new sign is less fun).

Lincoln Street Green Strip construction update - July 1