Returning to rave reviews again this year is the blooming garden on the corner of Commercial and Fleet Streets. The streetscape feature is thanks to the efforts and contributions from North End / Waterfront residents and the property owner at 240 Commercial Street. The space is widely viewed by neighbors that walk by the area where Commercial St. meets Atlantic Ave. In addition, many tourists pass by as they get on and off at the nearby trolley tour bus stop on their way up Fleet Street and around the waterfront.
In the past four years, Earl and Joanne Cate, the property owners at 240 Commercial Street, have invested thousands into the sidewalk garden. Earl Cate is President of Kilem Management Corp. and also a longtime donor for neighborhood non-profits, including the Saint John School.
Teddy Pasto lives and works in the adjacent Commercial St. building and has taken on the task of planting and maintaining the garden, with the help of North Ender, Sal Bartolo.
Teddy told us that his father used to take care of the raised, triangular corner garden years ago. When he could no longer do it, the city never paid it much attention and the space deteriorated into a rat-infested, overgrown eye-sore. Pasto works and his family lives in the upper floors of the building above Billy Tse’s Restaurant.
Now, thanks to these combined efforts, the corner garden is seeing its best year ever in the summer of 2014.