You Said It, JP!: 2013 in Quotes

“The family homes of the better-off. Jamaica Plain. The face of Middle America. Peaceful America.”

The neighborhood as described in “Jamaica Plain,” a crime novel set in JP and written by English former police officer Colin Campbell.

“Absolutely not.”

City Councilor Matt O’Malley on whether he is too old to go sledding in Jamaica Pond Park’s Sugar Bowl, following a Feb. 8-9 snowstorm.


“It’s a colossal moment.”

Anonymous source close to Mayor Thomas Menino, on the Mayor’s choice to not seek re-election.


“Sleep in.”

Former JP City Councilor John Tobin, on what former Mayor Thomas Menino should do on his first day as a private citizen.


“I want it to help the zoo in whatever way they think [best].”

Sixth-grader Adam Crellin-Sazama, after donating $1,050 to Franklin Park Zoo, partly raised through cookie sales.


“The market is smoking hot in Jamaica Plain.”

Real estate agent Maureen McElroy of Jamaica Hill Realty.


“I started running toward the first explosion. I just jumped the fence, holding the American flag in one hand and the camera in the other.” Local peace activist and Boston Marathon bombing rescue hero Carlos Arredondo, on his immediate reaction to the bombs.


“It was a scary and tragic end to one of Boston’s most joyful events.” Harry Smith, the president of the JP Regan Youth League, on the marathon bombings. Smith ran the marathon to raise funds for that youth league.


“God help the victims of this tragedy.”

Former Hyde Square-area City Councilor Mike Ross, tweeting from the bombing scene. Ross was near the explosions but uninjured.


“I wonder how many Boston liberals spent the night cowering in their homes wishing they had an AR-15 with a hi-capacity magazine?” Arkansas state Rep. Nate Bell on Twitter, during the FBI manhunt for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of two suspects in the marathon bombings.


“You are a moron.”

City Councilor Matt O’Malley’s Twitter reply to Bell.


“We have made our decision…We appreciate your comments on this [at-grade] design.”

State Department of Transportation Project Manager Steve McLaughlin, speaking to opponents at the end of a three-hour community hearing about replacing the Casey Overpass with the Casey Arborway street network.


“By and large, the people using the bridge are fairly ignorant of what’s being planned for that area. We think it’s important that the people who use that area should know what the state has planned.”

Jeffrey Ferris of Bridging Forest Hills about the group’s Casey Arborway protests and info hand-outs atop the Casey Overpass in May.


“The JPNC is not a municipal body of the City.”

John Guilfoil, deputy press secretary for then-Mayor Thomas Menino, about the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council’s controversial lawsuit against the City and real estate developers, where the JPNC alleged it was a municipal body. The suit was rejected by a judge and later settled on appeal.


“This was as close to unanimous opposition as I’ve ever seen to anything. It was really close to wall-to-wall opposition. But the developers felt they didn’t need to work with the community.” Then JPNC Chair Benjamin Day, lead plaintiff in the lawsuit, explaining why it was filed.


“This group of eight people made a unilateral decision to sue our city…pretending to represent 37,000 people.”

Resident Rick Stockwood, who was seeking to remove the neighborhood council members in the wake of their lawsuit.


“A blank site will be transformed into a handsome building that will provide much-needed housing for individuals and families who revere the Jamaica Plain and Mission Hill neighborhoods. We are gratified it has taken a big step forward.”

Anthony Nader, developer of the “Serenity” apartment tower at 105A S. Huntington Ave, upon the project’s approval by the Boston Redevelopment Authority.


“The dedication of Avenida de las Americas celebrates the great cultural richness and diversity of our City and the Jamaica Plain community.”

Then-Mayor Thomas Menino on Centre Street and Hyde and Jackson squares being dubbed “Avenida de las Americas,” or “Avenue of the Americas,” six years after the idea was approved by the City Council.


“The Library looks forward to working with the community as we move into the design phase of the Jamaica Plain Branch renovation project.”

Boston Public Library Director of Library Services and Branches Christine Schonhart, after the City approved funding for a major renovation to the JP Branch library.


“Going forward, we envision the church as the cultural centerpiece of our Latin Quarter, a place where all residents from our neighborhood, Jamaica Plain and Boston can gather, perform, create community and celebrate individual, family and community-wide events.”

A Hyde Square Task Force press release about the task force’s pending purchase of the former Blessed Sacrament Church building.


“That was my greatest vote in the legislature.”

Then-mayoral candidate Marty Walsh on his vote to legalize same-sex marriage while a state representative.


“You can see how someone will govern based on how they campaign.”

Then mayoral candidate Felix G. Arroyo, a JP resident, who later backed Walsh and is now the City’s chief of Health and Human Services.


“I’ve been out of town. It’s appropriate to just sit back and watch the action.”

Former City Councilor Chuck Turner, on his return to Boston from federal prison after conviction on bribery charges and his choice to not get involved in the mayoral race.


“We support the development team’s plans to create a dense, mixed-use, transit-oriented development that will bring new life to a long-neglected stretch of Washington Street and introduce new neighbors to our community.”

Stonybrook Neighborhood Association (SNA) steering committee member Carl Lowenberg on the proposed mixed-use Commons at Forest Hills development at 3593-3615 Washington St.


“We’re going to fight the eviction…We’ve been a part of JP for many years. It’s outrageous what they’re trying to do.”

Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America CEO Bruce Marks, on losing NACA’s long-time lease at the Commons at Forest Hills site to make way for it.


“This is bittersweet, given the love I have for this community, the great work we’re doing, and the amazing network of relationships here, but I’m enthusiastic about this new opportunity to advocate for small businesses.”

Former Egleston Square Main Streets Executive Director Betsy Cowan on leaving ESMS for the City’s Office of Business Development.


“It’s not a big move, in terms of geography…We were in an expensive space and we needed to cut back on expenses.”

ESAC Executive Director Bill Minkle on the organization’s move to Dorchester.


“It’s great to see the community’s vision for Jackson Square becoming a reality.”

Urban Edge Executive Director Chrystal Kornegay on breaking ground for the expansion of the building at 1542 Columbus Ave.


“Annie Dookhan’s egregious misconduct sent ripple effects throughout our entire criminal justice system.”

State Attorney General Martha Coakley, following Dookhan’s guilty plea in tampering with drug evidence at the William A. Hinton State Laboratory Institute on South Street.

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