Three lots in JP to remain open space

July 6, 2012
By

EGLESTON SQ.—Three City-owned lots on Dalrymple and Boylston streets in Jamaica Plain will likely remain open space, according to Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) Director Evelyn Friedman.

“The overwhelming response was for the sites to be used as open space,” Friedman said of the reaction at a community meeting held June 21 on proposals for the sites. She said about 50 people attended the meeting.

Two of the three lots are on Boylston Street. One site is already an orchard and the plan is for the other site to become one as well, according to Friedman.

Egleston Community Orchard (ECO) currently runs the Boylston Street site and has grown an orchard and garden there that boasts tomatoes, a composting area, basil, flowers, chard, kale, a path, an arbor for grapes, blueberries, raspberries, currants and apple trees.

The Commonwealth Land Trust, a nonprofit dedicated to preserving neighborhoods by offering affordable housing, would buy the two Boylston Street sites from the City and allow ECO to manage them, according to Friedman. She said in cases like this where the sites are used for open space, the DND typical sells them for $100 each.

The Commonwealth Land Trust and ECO did not respond to requests for comment.

Although attendees at the meeting agreed the Dalrymple Street site should be used as open space, they could not agree on whether to have a dog park or playground there, according to Friedman. She said the plan is for attendees to research different models for the site before DND holds another community meeting. An organization would still need to be found to purchase the property.