Neighborhood Stabilization

Comprehensive Plan II Summary

CONCEPT & PROCESS

From 1996 to 1998, the Greater Four Corners Action Coalition (GFCAC) led a two year community process to develop a comprehensive plan of development for the greater Four Corners neighborhood.  GFCAC conducted several charrettes, focus groups meetings, one-on-one interviews and a door to door survey. The plan was implemented, resulting in parks being renovated or developed, creation of new housing, an enhanced commercial district and more public transit options. There are no longer dumping grounds everywhere and Four Corners has been at the forefront of correcting environmental injustices by helping to create policies that have led to cleaner fuel buses and more environmentally friendly homes.

In 2012, since a lot of the priority projects were completed (see attachment A), GFCAC decided to conduct another planning process. They wanted to build on the infrastructure previously created and also, understand how to leverage some of the present and upcoming opportunities (Mid-Dorchester Corridor Initiative, Fairmount Corridor Planning Initiative). One of the constant themes was ensuring that no displacement occurs because of the new transit stop or the opportunities available to housing speculators due to the large number of foreclosed properties in the neighborhood. People also felt it was very important that there is a true resident led community process that occurs in Four Corners, given all the planning processes that are being considered for our North Dorchester area. It was important that Four Corners residents and other stakeholders control whatever planning impacts Four Corners.

In addition to looking at the physical infrastructure, this time GFCAC wanted to capture the social fabric as well, so focus groups were created. The three focus groups that were created were Quality of Life, Environmental Justice and youth. The Quality of Life Committee and the Environmental Justice Committee have become standing committees. Not only did they come up with priorities but also took on the task of implementation. The three top priorities for the Quality of Life Committee are, in order:

  1. Clean Neighborhood
  2. Jobs
  3. Mental Health

The Environmental Justice Committee chose community garden & fresh food, recycling and to work on the Boston Greenfest.  

The Youth Group came up with several concerns which became the basis for a Youth Conference in the fall of 2012. Among the concerns were:

  • They needed better education
  • They need to feel trusteed by the older generation
  • They felt they were being typecast as troublemakers without being given the benefit of the doubt.
  • They felt they were not able to ask others for help.
  • They were unable to understand how to rid of the feelings of inadequacy.
  • They felt like they did not have a template for empowerment; they were unable to understand how to become activists and navigators.

 The charrette process for the physical infrastructure started in August 2013 at a community-wide meeting and ended in the ratification of the plan in October, 2014 at GFCAC’s Annual Meeting. In between there were nine charrettes. GFCAC used the same boundaries as before (see attachment B) and involved over 100 residents and stakeholders. The following maps show the results.

ATTACHMENT A

STATUS OF CHARRETTE RESULTS

 1) RONALD STREET (OLD GIBSON SCHOOL SITE)
COMMUNITY CENTER OR AGRICULTURE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OR MIXED USE
BEING HELD AS POTENTIAL PARKING SITE

2) ERIE-ELLINGTON-FOWLER
HOUSING
TOWNHOUSES AND COMMUNITY CENTER DEVELOPED BY CSNDC

3) GREENWOOD STREET
BIKE TRAIL WITH BIKE BENCHES
PRIVATE LAND PURCHASED BY DEVELOPER, 3 BUILDINGS BUILT

4) ELDON STREET
OPEN SPACE, POSSIBLY BIKE TRAIL OR WALKING PATH
INCORPORATED INTO GREENWAY, PART SOLD TO MBTA FOR NEW TRAIN STOP

5) NORWELL STREET
HOUSING
TRINITY TERRACE DEVELOPED BY TRINITY CORPORATION

6) 213 WASHINGTON STREET
YOUTH CENTER
ELLA J. BAKER HOUSE DEVELOPED PLANS FOR THE UHURU YOUTH CENTER BUT TODAY IS A MEAT MARKET WHICH JUST OPENED

7) COMMUTER RAIL STOP
FOUR CORNERS/GENEVA AVENUE STOP UNDER CONSTRUCTION

8) NORWELL STREET (BY RAILROAD)
INDUSTRIAL PARK
PART OF THE LAND WAS USED FOR HOUSING. HESTER PROPERTY MAY STILL BE AVAILABLE.

9) WASHINGTON-VASSAR-HARVARD AVENUE
GAS STATION
GAS STATION WAS CREATED, NOW CLOSED. NEW OWNER

10) WASHINGTON STREET
MINI-MALL
STILL VACANT

11) BOWDOIN AVENUE
MINI-MALL INCLUDING BUSINESS INCUBATOR
STILL VACANT

12) NOTTINGHAM STREET
PLAYGROUND
STILL VACANT

13) MARSHALL SCHOOL
LANDSCAPING AND PLANTING IMPROVEMENT
LANDSCAPING, IMPROVEMENTS TO BUILDING AND BASKETBALL COURT DONE. NEW PLAYGROUNDS BUILT. STILL NEEDS WORK

14) DAKOTA TERRACE (105 DAKOTA)
NATURAL HABITAT
INCORPORATED INTO GREENWAY

15) DAKOTA- GENEVA
TOWN COMMONS
PRIVATE LAND. STILL VACANT

16) TONOWANDA-GENEVA
HOUSING OR MIXED USE
HOUSING DEVELOPMENT RECENTLY BUILT BY VIET-AID CDC

17) CLAYBOURNE STREET
EXTENSION OF MOTHER’S REST PARK
PARK RENOVATED AND EXTENDED

18) 382 WASHINGTON STREET
STILL UNDER DISCUSSION
GREENWOOD CHURCH ACQUIRED PROPERTY FOR USE AS FOR PARKING LOT

19) WASHINGTON STREET (OLD COURTHOUSE ANNEX)
OFFICE SPACE
PART OF THE CODMAN SQUARE HEALTH CENTER NETWORK. OFFICE SPACE, CLASSROOMS AND WOMEN’S GYM

20) PROPOSED LIGHT RAIL
NEW TRANSIT OPTIONS STILL BEING DISCUSSED

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