Opinion » Letters

A Boston Boom, but not for everyone

Wednesday Jan 9, 2019

As someone who was born and raised in the South End/ Lower Roxbury neighborhood along Harrison Avenue back in the days before gentrification came in and changed housing patterns, and not so much for the good. I did notice that public meeting notice by the Boston Planning & Development Agency concerning the Alexandra Hotel. I remember this building quite well back in the days of my youth. I had friends who lived in what was then a very large apartment building. It didn't have historic value and was only an old building to me.

Thinking about that building, I also remembered the old opera house abandoned for my then lifetime at the corner of Washington Street and Worcester Square. They both seemed like ghosts of the past. Today, the opera house site is now upscale condos and I see that the Alexandra Hotel seems to be headed in the same direction.

The public notice in the South End News talked about a 150 room, 12 floor boutique hotel with most likely expensive restaurant and café space on the ground floor and a rooftop eatery.

Growing up in my old boyhood neighborhood, things were always tough for working class families like mine. As the building boom in Boston continues, it has become a bust for low-income and working families.

Doesn't anyone care about working class folk anymore? Our Boston Boom is not booming for many of us but only for those who can afford the high life. Boutique hotels, expensive restaurants, what about the rest of us?

We are becoming a city of housing extremes. The very rich and the very poor. The rest of us just keep getting squeezed out of out future in Boston.

God forbid, developers think about ordinary folk and that goes for our elected officials too.

Sal Giarratani
East Boston