Blog Archives

JP Observer: Shop locally at businesses that make decisions locally

May 27, 2016
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Construction of new storefront and business spaces in Jamaica Plain is now underway. And in March, the City of Boston released a report saying it wants to boost small businesses in the neighborhoods, partly by making the variance and permitting process easier for them. A common cry from the JP community since the 1970s...

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JP Observer: CPA would bring needed benefits to JP

April 29, 2016
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Riddle 1: What would likely raise millions of dollars for the three core areas of affordable housing, historic preservation, and outdoor recreation and open space in Boston through a minor property tax surcharge and matching state funds? Answer 1: The Community Preservation Act (CPA), if put on the November ballot by the City Council...

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JP Observer: You saw it here: Trump is not very popular

March 25, 2016
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In the 19 states that have held popular vote primaries for both parties so far this year, calculation of the raw numbers published on the New York Times website reveals that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has earned 19.9 percent of the total votes cast. Here in Boston he got 16.6 percent, 16.9 in...

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JP Observer: JP has experienced ‘accidental security’

February 26, 2016
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When Jamaica Plain economics are discussed these days, especially regarding housing, the phrase “accidental security” comes to mind. That concept goes a long way toward explaining changes that seem beyond our control in the neighborhood and might help us deal with some of them. No wonder we as a community feel so anxious about...

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JP Observer: Mayor comes through on housing, arts, staff

January 29, 2016
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Looking over the wish list for Mayor Marty Walsh’s new administration created by the JP Observer in December 2013, it’s exciting to note that he has accomplished a lot in major areas. The City made advances under Walsh in the critical arena of affordable housing, including for middle class people. Earlier this month the...

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JP Observer: Going national for gun control (and more)

December 18, 2015
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Some terrific people represent Jamaica Plain in the United States Congress. Oddly enough, that can be frustrating at times. When our team votes our way, but Congress itself doesn’t, what can we do? Efforts to strengthen gun restrictions in the U.S. offer a classic case. Both of JP’s representatives in the House, Stephen Lynch...

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JP Observer: Streetcars would bring joy to Hyde Square

November 20, 2015
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Although Jamaica Plain was once famous for being a “Streetcar Suburb” of Boston, service on the Arborway Line to Forest Hills was suddenly taken away by the MBTA 30 years ago this fall. Despite efforts to bring streetcars back to the E-Line of the Green Line, they haven’t been seen south of Heath Street...

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JP Observer: Simple changes can make housing senior friendly

October 23, 2015
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Jamaica Plain is such a great place to live, younger people are joining older neighbors to think and talk about how they can “age in place” in the neighborhood. A big consideration, of course, is housing. When the Washington Street/Columbus Avenue corridor study community process launched recently, several people, not just elders, commented in...

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JP Observer: JP can reduce its use of fossil fuels

September 25, 2015
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By Sandra Storey Special to the Gazette “Can JP Power Itself?” was the tantalizing title of a community gathering and potluck sponsored by JP NET (New Economy Transition) and JP Forum on July 29. Related questions were posed: Can Jamaica Plain transition away from fossil fuels? Reduce its carbon footprint? What would be the...

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JP Observer: Food pantry in, by and for JP needs support

August 28, 2015
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The historic First Church in Jamaica Plain, Unitarian Universalist, whose clock looks out over the Monument Square Historic District, also houses a unique human service effort. Seventeen volunteers from JP manage and staff a food pantry there that provides basic staples for free to other local people who are in need. The church, the...

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