by Rick Winterson
On Thursday morning, May 17, Mayor Walsh held one of his patented Neighborhood Coffee Hours. The location was in the Flaherty Park on the north leg of B Street. This was the sixth such event, out of a total of 17 the Mayor had scheduled all across the City of Boston between late April and mid-July this year. The Mayor, District 2 City Councilor Ed Flynn, at-large City Councilor Annissa Essabai-George, and several City officials were on hand. Perhaps most important, an estimated 200 or more local residents showed up. All in all, it was quite a well-attended event.
Plans are afoot to improve upon Flaherty Park. It is currently a mixed use green space, with most of the equipment designed for young children to play on. The landscaping is already pleasant, with considerable shaded area, as well as open green space. Its area is roughly 100×100 feet, which amounts to approximately a quarter of an acre.
The Coffee Hour program began with Parks Commissioner Chris Cook welcoming everyone. He then introduced patriotic airs both sung and danced by a young student group from South Boston’s Saint Peter Academy. To open his own remarks, the Mayor mentioned that the City’s capital budget contains $715,000 for a complete upgrade of Flaherty Park. Interestingly, features of this upgrade will include professional landscape architecture, as well as a sound barrier along the streetsides and fitness equipment labeled “For Adult Play”.
The Mayor went on to list the various budgeted capital projects that will impact South Boston – upgrades for the “L”/Curley Center, a new façade for the local Branch Library, modernization of the remainder of Old Colony, a total rebuild of Old Harbor/MEM Housing, remodeling of Moakley Park and Field, and the eventual replacement of Long Island Bridge, which will cost more than $100 million.
In the prize drawing, a delighted Pauline Donovan won the Dunkin’ Donuts prize bag. Mayor Walsh and the City of Boston are to be complimented on a successful (and informative) Neighborhood Coffee Hour. As a closing suggestion, get yourself a booklet from the Boston Parks and Recreation Department entitled “SUMMER in the Parks – Programs and Events”. This booklet contains more than 20 pages chock full of hundreds of warm weather activities at Boston’s parks, camps, beaches, and sports centers. There is literally – and South Boston Online means “literally” – something, or many things, for everyone.