By Phil Orlandella
Making exemptions for one developer could present problems
Changing a law to provide an exemption for one project has the potential of establishing an adverse and dangerous precedent that could haunt Boston neighborhoods in the future.
That’s exactly what Mayor Martin J. Walsh is attempting to accomplish with lawmakers for the proposed Winthrop Square project. (The Shadow Law)
Many people are not opposed to the project, which will certainly benefit the city in many ways, especially cleaning up a condemned piece of property (a four-story parking garage), and making room for a more productive establishment.
If an exemption is provided, how does it prevent other developers from attempting to do the same elsewhere, and if refused, will there be lawsuits filed? How will the wording of the law be constructed to change and prohibit it from happening again?
This is a state law but the city has policies that deal with shadows as well.
Could there be some sort of compromise that will make this viable project work?
Mayor an easy winner…unless
As it stands now, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh appears to be a shoe-in for re-election.
Reportedly, he has the political war chest to wage an unbeatable campaign that will take him over the top.
Being the incumbent has a measure of notoriety, and he has a high rate of well battle ready supporters.
The only possible way the Mayor will not go back to City Hall for a second four year-term is the ongoing federal probe that documents show, two top aides for the Mayor, allegedly pressuring a promoter to hire union employees.
The Mayor has vigorously denied any involvement but if the case goes to trial the potential defendant’s facing some serious federal time could make a deal and implicate the Mayor.
We’ll have to wait and see!
Licensing fees should be used for Greenway and Columbus Park
Now that the Boston Planning and Development Agency has approved two projects relating to the Municipal Harbor Plan for the Waterfront District, both the Rose Kennedy Greenway and Christopher Columbus Park should benefit from Chapter 91 license fees and used it for funding programs and maintain all of the open spaces that attract thousands of visitors and neighborhood residents each year.
The Greenway and Columbus Park are the two-major open-space areas the neighborhood have and maintenance and programs are key elements in keeping them clean, healthy, beautiful and active.