By Mayor Martin J. Walsh
Every spring, we release our Capital Investment Plan which funds the critical improvements to our infrastructure and facilities in Boston over a five-year period. It is a reflection of our priorities, and is guided by the voices of over 15,000 residents who offered input for our citywide plan, Imagine Boston 2030. Our Capital Plan funds the essentials of community life, such as our schools, streets, libraries, and parks, including climate and resilience projects. It’s a commitment to all those who call Boston home and to our future generations.
Here in the North End, we’re making investments across a wide range of projects, including parks and open space, streets and transportation, our schools’ infrastructure, and our delivery of City services.
As you may know, the North End is highly exposed to sea level rise due to the low-lying coastline. To protect the neighborhood from climate change, we’re continuing to invest in resilient open spaces like Langone Park and Puopolo Playground. We’re allocating $12.2 million to make enhancements to the playground, basketball courts, baseball fields, softball field, bocce, lighting, drainage, and plantings.
We’re devoting $2.93 million for renovations to the Paul Revere Mall, including improved site furnishings, pathways, landscaping, utilities, and restoration work on the fountain and monument. We’re funding a $1 million playground renovation for the Christopher Columbus Park and $200,000 for the design of the Cutillo Park renovation.
With an eye towards the future, we’re starting the final phase of construction for the Eliot School at 585 Commercial Street as part of our $35.6 million investment. The renovated building will provide more classrooms, supporting the Eliot School’s expansion as a K-8 School. Additionally, we’re making a $1.47 million investment to assess the physical conditions of the North End Branch of the Boston Public Library and develop and implement an improvement plan.
The City of Boston is also investing in high-quality facilities to better service our residents, including $3 million towards the design of the new North End Community Center. $2.5 million will be allocated for the reconstruction of North Square, which will include the installation of public art.
Now that we’ve submitted Boston’s budget, where do we go from here? First, to the City Council, where it will be reviewed and adjusted as necessary. After it’s gone through that process and secured approval, it will go into effect, starting in July 2020 and running throughout the next 12 months. We hope you will continue to provide your valuable input on what we as a city can do to raise up your community. If you’d like to learn more about the Capital Plan and how this budget was created, please go to budget.boston.gov.