Rose Kennedy Greenway

callahan

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Does anybody have information as to what, for sure, is happening? I'm confused about how the land is going to be put to use. Are there still plans for two museums and have they been designed? Will there be a greenhouse and a YMCA built? Is there a skateboard park? Will there be outdoor art? Who is doing the landscape design? There seems to be a lot of misinformation, or very little information.
 

callahan

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So, the building was designed by Moshe Safdie. He's done some interesting buildings. I'm not sure about this one. I'd like to see more drawings.
 

BostonSkyGuy

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Speaking of the Greenway, any news on Gateway Center? It seems like the biggest on again off again project in the city right now. Every time I hear something about it its either on as planned, not happening, or having its height reduced to like 500-600'.
 

justin

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I wouldn't call it on-again-off-again since it was never on to begin with: no developer, no concrete design. All there was was a master planning exercise by the BRA. On past form, it's not happening in the next 10-15 years.

justin
 

quadratdackel

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^ I especially like the black abyss in the background. Downtown Boston needs more black abyss.
...If the RKG ends up anything like that pic, I'll be happy. My big concern is heavy, high-speed traffic to and from the highway will make this space unpleasant, but this pic makes the park kinda serene and approachable. But I'll hold judgement until it's built.
 

gravedigger4444

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I've said it before. I think the road should be put up the middle with the parks on either side.
 

philip

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Menino opposes Armenian memorial on Greenway

By Thomas C. Palmer Jr., Globe Staff | May 30, 2006

Placing a memorial donated by the Armenian-American community on the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway would open the door to other groups with causes and is ``a dangerous precedent to start," said Mayor Thomas M. Menino.

Menino has joined a chorus of influential public officials and others who don't have a direct say in what gets built on the Greenway -- the city's rainbow at the end of 15 years of urban disruption -- but have weighed in against the memorial.

Other opponents include Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy board members, who have questioned whether the park corridor is an appropriate location for a memorial.

"We could have 44 out there -- what prevents that?" Menino said in an interview. ``It's a dangerous precedent to start."

The Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, which oversaw the Big Dig and is constructing the new parks, plans to install a park to be paid for by the Armenian Heritage Tribute and Genocide Memorial Foundation. The design includes a 12-sided sculpture recalling the 12 former provinces of Armenia, a water jet and pool, and a 60-foot-diameter labyrinth of paved granite and grass, symbolizing renewal and hope.

Senator Edward M. Kennedy told the Globe that the conservancy, a nonprofit group organized to fund and maintain the emerging corridor of downtown parks, should decide whether the memorial belongs there.

``The conservancy should try to make the judgment," Kennedy said. The senator suggested a moratorium on proposals for Greenway memorials, similar to one that has been in effect since 2003 on the National Mall in Washington.

The National Mall has now become home to 19 memorials or plaques, while Greenway planners over the last decade have said they don't want to dot the new parks with commemorative monuments.

Kennedy's suggestion for a moratorium is consistent with the wishes of the 10-member board of the conservancy. At this month's meeting, chairman Peter Meade said the board hoped to go at least five years before considering proposals for groups that want space on the Greenway.

Menino said there could be another suitable place in Boston for a small park that would recall the Armenian Genocide that began in 1915. ``If there's an alternate site, I'd be willing to work with the Armenian community to put it there," Menino said.

In 2000, the Legislature directed the Turnpike Authority to study whether there was a place -- the legislation did not specify where -- for a memorial to the Armenian Genocide.

James M. Kalustian, president of the board of about 45 religious and cultural institutions that make up the Armenian heritage foundation, said their proposal fits in with Greenway parks planned for the North End and Chinatown.

``To say there's no ethnicity on the Greenway, I don't think that's a fair statement," he said. But those two parks were conceived as both public and neighborhood-oriented parks from the start, and unlike the Armenian park will be located in largely ethnic neighborhoods.

The proposed park was shown publicly for the first time at a meeting of North End and Wharf District residents last month, and Turnpike officials made clear they plan to build it on a piece of land near Christopher Columbus Park.

``It's going there," said Fred Yalouris, director of urban architecture for the Big Dig. ``The only question is the design, and what the inscriptions are."

Supporters, including state Representative Peter J. Koutoujian, say that the park would display the names of accomplished Armenian-Americans, as well as those of the former provinces.

Koutoujian and others have emphasized that the park will recall the struggles of other groups as well as Armenians.

``It will be as universal in its message as possible," Donald J. Tellalian of Tellalian Associates Architects & Planners LLC of Boston, the lead designer, said this month.

The park would cost about $4 million and is to be funded and maintained by its sponsors. That would save the Turnpike and conservancy considerable amounts of money.

But US Representative Michael E. Capuano, whose district includes the North End and Chinatown sections of the Greenway, said he also was concerned about fairness in the consideration of proposals by groups representation.

"We should put every one of these projects under the same criteria," said Capuano, who joined Kennedy last week at the groundbreaking of the Greenway park in Chinatown.
 

lexicon506

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I actually wouldn't mind a few monuments along the greenway. Especially in the wharf district parks, between the New Center and Boston Museum. That large swath of park is nothing but grass and pavement. I'm scared that no one will end up using them seeing that they are in the median of a busy road and have nothing of note. A few monuments would give people something to go to and look at, attracting people to those parks. Who goes to the national mall for any reason other than to see the monuments?
 

castevens

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I want something big. A "Saint Louis Arch", a "Space Needle", a giant monument that is good looking and identifiable.

Hey. I can dream
 

lexicon506

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^What we need is a World's Fair in Boston. That will probably get us something good.
 

quadratdackel

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lexicon506 said:
Who goes to the national mall for any reason other than to see the monuments?
The Mall is huge. People play soccer and ultimate frisbee there. Of course, they're locals, not visitors. Visitors may only go for the monuments. That brings up a fair question: is the RKG for visitors or for locals? Presumably it's for both (like the Mall), but I see it more as a little open space for everyone downtown who otherwise wouldn't have any than as yet another tourist attraction. Hopefully the RKG will at least be able to support a little in the way of sports, but I'm concerned it's too small and too high-traffic. And monuments might not attract people much- think Comm Ave in Back Bay, an even narrower median and full of monuments. People might enjoy the monuments while they're on a stroll there anyways, but I don't think the monuments a draw. Of course those monuments are much smaller than the Armenian proposal, so maybe it's a bad comparison. Ultimately, I'm fine with monuments in RKG, as long as they don't interfere with other uses too much.
 

Ron Newman

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It's not going to be quite as open as this, because I believe a National Park Service visitor center is going onto part of one of the Wharf District parcels.
 

callahan

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lexicon506 said:
I actually wouldn't mind a few monuments along the greenway. Especially in the wharf district parks, between the New Center and Boston Museum. That large swath of park is nothing but grass and pavement. I'm scared that no one will end up using them seeing that they are in the median of a busy road and have nothing of note. A few monuments would give people something to go to and look at, attracting people to those parks. Who goes to the national mall for any reason other than to see the monuments?
I know that there is a budget for art to be bought for the park. There will be art. What kind of art is anotherquestion.
 

justin

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I would like more of that empty space filled with buildings, and monuments are detrimental to that goal because the `consecrate' the space (like the murder park on Beacon Hill). Once it commemorates something truly grizzly, there's no moving it. The lot where the Holocaust memorial now is would have been a great site for a Flatiron-style building that would define the edge of Congress St. and close in the Blackstone block. As it is, that area continues to suffer from space leakage.

justin
 

Ron Newman

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The Holocaust Memorial parcel was originally proposed for an office building that would sort of mirror Center Plaza. You can see it on some of the really old maps that are still displayed around that neighborhood (maybe in the GC T station). I assume that it ended up as a memorial when the BRA couldn't find a developer, but I don't know for sure. (Any building there would have been very narrow.)
 

Scott

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That brings up a fair question: is the RKG for visitors or for locals?
Imo, visitors... even the Boston museum is a clunky ego piece aimed at visitors.
 

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