Many deserve credit for Arborway Yard success

December 15, 2006
By

As chair of the Community Planning Committee for the Arborway Yard (CPCAY), it was with great excitement that I learned that the MBTA has included an additional $29 million in its revised Capital Improvements Plan budget for next year.

MBTA General Manager Dan Grabauskas has made good on his commitment to fully fund the design and construction of the Arborway Yard Transit Facility, and we sincerely thank him. We also want to thank former General Manager Mike Mulhern for his early commitment to work with the CPCAY and the City. This decision marks another key milestone in our effort to work with the MBTA to secure both a state-of-the-art facility and significant community benefits that will improve our community.

This most recent accomplishment, as well as all we have achieved over the past eight years, would not have been possible without the constant and strong commitment from Mayor Thomas Menino, Congressman Michael Capuano, Rep. Liz Malia, Rep. Jeffrey Sánchez, former Rep. Kevin Fitzgerald, Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, Sen. Brian Joyce, City Council President Michael Flaherty, Councilors John Tobin, Rob Consalvo, Felix Arroyo, Stephen Murphy, Chuck Turner and Sam Yoon and former Councilor Maura Hennigan.

A special word of thanks to Muhammad Ali-Salaam of the Boston Redevelopment Authority whose wise and gentle guidance and support over the years helped keep us focused and moving ahead.

More recently, Michael Kineavey and Jim Hunt from the city also were instrumental in advocating on behalf of the CPCAY and the community. Other city officials also played important roles over the years, including Vineet Gupta, Ralph DeNisco, Jalal Ghaemghami, Jeong Jun-Ju, as well as staff from the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services.

We also should not forget the critical support we received from Peter Welch of the Mayor’s Office in the very beginning of our effort to convince the MBTA to work with the community.

The CPCAY also had the strong support of many community groups, neighborhood associations and business groups that really are the foundation that makes our community so vibrant.

I especially want to thank all the past and present members of the CPCAY for their extraordinary commitment to the community and their support of me personally, spending countless hours together trying to ensure that the Jamaica Plain community benefited from this transit facility. A special thanks to Bernie Doherty who co-chaired the CPCAY with me in the first few years. From the very beginning of our work together, the CPCAY believed in the power of this community to influence the decisions made by the MBTA and others that would affect the quality of our lives.

We clearly have more work to do to monitor the design, bidding and construction process. But we need to take a moment and celebrate our success.

Henry Allen
Chair, Community Planning Committee for the Arborway Yard
Jamaica Plain

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