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Should ZBA Approve 'Little Wanderers' Sale?

Do you want preservation or development in Jamaica Plain?

Yesterday’s Boston Globe column about developing in Jamaica Plain sparked an online discussion among residents who appear to go against the column's rationale.

Globe columnist Adrian Walker reported the historic Home for Little Wanderers has been in the process of packing up shop and moving to Walpole, bent on profiting from the sale of the rundown property on at 161 South Huntington St.

Walker writes the community is totally against the sale and eventual teardown, which would result in expensive rental apartments with a percentage designated affordable housing – between 30 and 40 units, according to the column.

However, members of the Facebook group “We Are All Whole Foods” disagree with the notion that JP residents are opposed to change.

The Boston Zoning Board of Appeal will determine whether to approve variances of the project a meeting today. 

The discussion evokes shades of the Whole Foods controversy, but is Jamaica Plain now in favor of development?

How do you want the ZBA to decide? Leave your opinion in the comments.

Jen November 13, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Bret, am I mistaken or are you sitting on a submitted article right now that provides a full compendium of opinions for and against the proposed development, that were expressed during the formal public review process? I know that you will have been plopped down here by AOL with a responsibility to attract the readership numbers that justify the ad sales that make the Patch business model viable for its investors. Is it your intent to do that primarily by stirring up antagonisms among the people who live here?
Maura November 13, 2012 at 07:38 PM
Jen, what is your objection exactly? The Patch has always been a pot stirrer. This article is no different but you should be used to that by now if you read the Patch regularly.
Liza Frise November 13, 2012 at 08:15 PM
what is the Home's burrent worth? $100 million? Huge endowment. seems like their committment is to increasing their assets as opposed to providing relevant services in the city where the need is greatest.
Jen November 14, 2012 at 03:39 AM
Maura, my objection is to manufacturing controversy that doesn't comport with the actual story. Using 1 Globe article plus comments and 1 Facebook page as sources strikes me as a weak effort level and a disservice to readers. The debate about the proposed development at 161 S. Huntington did not center around a conflict between pro- and anti-development sources -- people and organizations opposed the specific project for a diversity of specific reasons. So the piece mis-informs people about the specific issue. It also gives the odd and mis-informing impression that a formal public development process involving dozens of people and organizations, and a scattering of social media comments, are of similar import.
Rich P November 14, 2012 at 05:29 AM
Great post!

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