April, 2021 Meeting Minutes

Hello Members and Friends of Egleston Square Neighborhood Association,

Here are notes from our April meeting and other updates:

  • Police Report
  • Updates – COGDesign, KG Collective, Columbus Ave. bus lane, C. Castillo liquor license, ESNA Housing Committee
  • Discussion – 1990 Columbus Ave (Doris Bunté Apartments)

Police Report

Officer Jones presented the Police Report, including:

– 2 aggravated assaults, one at 3089 Washington St., and one at 67 Walnut Park

– 1 burglary

– 2 larcenies

– 3 vehicle break ins, one from a repair shop parking lot and 2 unlocked vehicles

– continuing investigation of BB gun shots originating at 1990 Columbus Ave.


COGDesign & Lawson and Dixwell Parks

Jess of COGDesign has 3 design options ready to share with the community.  We’ll aim for online and in person outreach, as the weather gets warmer and Covid restrictions ease up.  Gardening events in Lawson Park will resume in May, starting with the City-wide Love Your Block Clean Up on May 15.

KG Collective – retail cannabis sales at 1589 Columbus

KG Collective received its next round of approvals.  It had already been approved by the Boston Cannabis Board, and in April received votes of approval from the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council and Boston’s Zoning Board of Appeals for a zoning variance for adult cannabis sales.  KG had refined its security plan, arranged for at least 2 short term parking spaces on Columbus Avenue, and confirmed the use of the easement for deliveries; Mike and Marcus confirmed they will continue to engage with ESNA, ESMS, and other community members.

Columbus Ave. Bus Lane

William Moose of Boston Transportation Dept. met with the pastor of St. Mary of the Angels to discuss some ideas for Sunday parking.  He also gave us this update:

“The latest I’ve heard from the MBTA is that work should be completed sometime in June or July. The bulk of the remaining work will include the installation of the rest of the bus stop elements (shelters, lighting, fence on back of platform), reconstructing the remaining sidewalk ramps along the corridor that aren’t currently ADA compliant, and then finally repaving and final striping for the pavement markings for the corridor. Buses should be using the bus lanes by that time..”

Carlos Castillo & Egleston Liquor License Transfer

Carlos Castillo received approval from the Liquor Licensing Board for transfer of the license from Egleston Liquor. 

ESNA Housing Committee

Two properties received approval from the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council for zoning variances.  The ESNA Housing Committee was in support of these variances – both owners engaged in good community discussions and presented reasonable plans.

87-89 West Walnut Park – add a basement unit for rental

12-14 Ennis Road – demolish existing building (one lot is currently empty) and build 2 new 2-family homes, one on each lot, for sale as condos.

Discussion regarding 1990 Columbus Ave., Doris Bunté Apartments

ESNA would like to have better connection to the residents of 1990 Columbus Ave. and be able to offer community support.  We learned the building is owned by the Boston Housing Authority and is slated for renovation; it looks like plans are moving forward, the tenants are informed and involved, and funds have been allocated.   The recent murder in the building (December, 2020) and high number of police calls related to incidents inside and outside of the building highlight a security issue; we learned there is limited security in the building in the evening and on weekends.

Some of our discussion included:

– the building used to be for seniors only, but that changed at some point, and people with other issues were housed while at the same time federal funds for services were cut

– Urban Edge used to manage the building and provide security, so there is a good precedent for Boston Housing Authority to work with outside management

– there is respect for the property management team, and people felt Kate Bennett, head of the Boston Housing Authority, is a great administrator.

ESNA is part of the Egleston Coalition, a group of neighbors and organizations that have monthly meeting with service agencies; we hope this will be a good forum that will include the Doris Bunté Apartments management team.