Tag Archives: Fort Hill

SEEN FROM THE HILL : OPEN LETTER TO ROSIE’S PLACE

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To Ena FoxKate Sullivansmarsh@rosiesplace.org and 34 More…
Jun 20 at 3:43 PM

Thanks Ena,

Your point and perspective is an excellent one!

There’s nothing wrong with a social service organization helping folks in need renting space in our community. Indeed, it’s welcomed if the lion’s share of the benefit belongs to us.

But the facts tell a very different story. Since the spring selling season started, prices for property in the Highland Park/Fort Hill area are up 20-25%. That gets noticed!

Many support the good works at Rosie’s Place and Pine Street. But when will we recognize big institutional expansion for what it is: an opportunity to grow an organization’s assets through investments that take advantage of escalating real estate prices, which in turn improve that organization’s business portfolio?

And expanding social services is the elephant in the room that everybody is comfortable ignoring these days. All the while, somehow it’s OK for the city to fail at educating our kids, fail to be inclusive when hiring, award lucrative construction contracts in our neighborhoods to businesses outside of the city, or fail to recognize a fair days work with a fair days wage . The sobering reality for us is our lifeline to stay and exist in this city is increasingly on social services and non-profits that have become saturated in our neighborhood in lieu of every other development plan – including sorely needed business development and a healthy TAX base.
Again, I think many of us have no problem with social service non-profits. But why gentrify possible mom and pop businesses and a host of home-grown social service non-profits that have been doing great work in our neighborhood for years?

If Rosie’s Place or Pine Street are committed to helping folks in need renting space in our community, they could support Hawthorne Youth and Community Center (http://www.catalogueforphilanthropy.org/ma/2005/hawthorne_youth_5618.htm) and the Cooper Center with badly needed funds to continue the great work each has done for decades! This wouldn’t use up sparse retail space in John Eliot Square for local business folks already feeling the space pinch Dudley (Dudley Square fixture feeling sting of gentrification: http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2014/06/17/dudley-fixture-floyd-williams-feeling-sting-gentrification-his-botanic-business-faces-closure/2DGLgqAk2a2vcPuJtCzWEM/story.html). This can be done by writing a check.

In the end, the choice for the retail space at 10 John Eliot Square will be made by voting members of the Norfolk House Condo Association. That said, this issue and discussion is much bigger than a Condo Association. We as a neighborhood should be calling on our elected officials to hear the all the concerns of the neighborhood.

Thanks again for your engagement!

—- Rodney Singleton / SEEN FROM THE HILL

ROXBURY HERE : OUR MISSION

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There is a new Roxbury unfolding in the bosom of the old Roxbury; before our eyes it is blossoming. We see it, and we welcome it.

This story is the stream upon which our new online journal sails. Roxbury Here is exactly what our name says : the voice of Roxbury spoken, written, argued, and opined direct from the hills of Roxbury; from our college; from our restaurants and real estate officers; from our schools and churches; from our immigrant communities; and from our residents both long-time and new, diverse and more so every day.

From Mission Hill to Mount Pleasant, from Fort Hill to Humboldt/Townsend, from Lower Roxbury to Shirley Street and the Prairie, we are many, many Roxburys all for one community conversation.

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Roxbury Here also sees the City of Boston as a whole, as City hall administers it and develops it. We embrace the politics of neighborhood and City, of the state and Federal Government, too, when these affect us. We will not settle only for being affected. We demand to affect ourselves as well !

So say our columnists and our reporters, whose work we urge you to read regularly.

One word more, of caution as well as innovation. The new Roxbury cannot be allowed just to push out the old. the arts projects, restaurants, innovation businesses, bureaucracies coming into Roxbury must welcome into their work and social connection those who already live in Roxbury’s many corners. Too finally has the South End, the neighborhood immediately to our north, and whence many new Roxbury-ites come, transformed entirely to expensive living. We must see to it that Roxbury life stays as income diverse as the lifestyles and origins of its people.

Isn’t this diversity of income, fashions, skin colors, and faiths exactly what makes Roxbury so intellectually and culturally vital right now ? It’s a Roxbury worth fighting to maintain — to develop on our own lines, not the plans of others upon us.

We pledge to you, our readers, that Roxbury Here will be the voice of diversity reform and of innovation in many directions. There is no turning back now. The time is at hand to put a voice to the soul of the Roxbury community moving forward.

—- the Editors and Staff of Roxbury Here

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