Community Real Estate

Resident Group Wins Round One in Long Wharf Restaurant Case

A group of ten local residents challenging plans to locate a restaurant on the end of Long Wharf won the first series of court motions against the City and State. The court denied dismissal motions by the City’s Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) and the State’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Notifications of the court rulings were dated October 13, 2010.

The BRA said in their filing that “there are no facts alleged in the Complaint which demonstrate Plaintiffs are aggrieved … Further, there is no private right of action under Article 97 and a request for declaratory judgment under M.G.L. ch 231A is not an independent statutory basis for standing.”

Edge of Long Wharf (Photo by Matt Conti) – August 2009

The ten residents, as plaintiffs, claim the BRA-owned space on Long Wharf is “public waterfront parkland” and therefore protected by State law Article 97 which states that “agencies shall not change the control or use of any right or interest in Article 97 land” without approval by the State Legislature. In addition to Article 97, they cite “errors of law” in the DEP decision regarding the protection of views of the water, compliance with the Municipal Harbor Plan, the water-dependent use zone, and the proper public purpose requirement. Potential issues raised by the residents include excessive noise, damage to public open space/parkland and impairment of scenic quality on the wharf.

The plaintiffs are listed in the legal memo as Sanjoy Mahajan, Victor Brogna, Stephanie Hogue, David Kubiak, Mary McGee, Anne M. Pistorio, Thomas Schiavoni, Pasqua Scibelli, Robert Skole and Patricia Thiboutot.

3 Replies to “Resident Group Wins Round One in Long Wharf Restaurant Case

  1. I think it is wonderful that the "North End Ten" would take this legal action in order to keep our open spaces open. The BRA should not be encouraging a restaurant to open on public land. Nicole

  2. I am in complete support of the legal action undertaken by this group of North End residents. Public land on Boston waterfront needs to be preserved for public enjoyment… and not be "divested" expediently to private interests under city guise.

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