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Old 04-16-2009, 11:28 AM
 
Location: Thumb of Michigan
4,489 posts, read 6,660,356 times
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I have a few questions about Boston, (just there the other day..) and was wanting some insight on a couple of things, so please bear with me.

1. The trolley that runs up and down Route 9, does that line cater mainly to college people? (Longwood area)

2. The North End (Italian neighborhood) is nice, how are one's chances to ever settle in that particular area? Are people welcoming or not? Expensive?

3. Chinatown - Why is that part of Boston a bit run-down? Last time i was in town, it just seemed a bit tidier. You'd figure since it's some sort of tourist destination, the area will put it's best foot forward to keep the area clean.

4. Chelsea - What's up with that area? An old nulcear waste site/brownfield? I figure since it was in close proximity to Boston, that it'd be nicer. What's the story with that area? It reminds me of a bit of the section called Delray in Detroit.

5. Did they rename the Fleet Center to TD Bankworth Garden? If so, does that arena's basement double as another train depot?

Last question...

6. I was looking for the open fish market along the pier/wharf and i didn't see one. (something like Seattle's) Does Boston even have an open fish market? If so, where exactly is it.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-16-2009, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Newton, Mass.
2,954 posts, read 10,801,105 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
I have a few questions about Boston, (just there the other day..) and was wanting some insight on a couple of things, so please bear with me.

1. The trolley that runs up and down Route 9, does that line cater mainly to college people? (Longwood area)
I assume you mean the E line on Huntington Av, which is part of Route 9. The answer is, yes and no. There are a lot of schools in that area. Northeastern, Wentworth, Berklee, Harvard Sch. Public Health, Harvard Med, Mass. Art, Simmons, Emmanuel, Wheelock. A lot of students live in the Mission Hill area along that trolley line. So there are plenty of students taking the E, but there are a decent number of non-students who live or work in those areas, e.g. work in the hospitals.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
2. The North End (Italian neighborhood) is nice, how are one's chances to ever settle in that particular area? Are people welcoming or not? Expensive?
This depends on what you want. Compared to other cities or more outlying areas, it is expensive for the square footage you get, though other areas like Beacon Hill are probably more expensive. Due to its proximity to downtown Boston, plenty of young professionals with no prior direct ties to the neighborhood rent or own condos there. If you can afford it, and you want city life with less space, you could settle there.

As for welcoming, I don't think it's as much of an issue as in some other areas. I'm sure there are some longtime residents who are not thrilled with the influx of new people in the neighborhood, but people in the North End are used to suburbanites and tourists in the streets; now they're mostly used to newcomers moving in too and if you don't behave badly it's not really a problem.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
3. Chinatown - Why is that part of Boston a bit run-down? Last time i was in town, it just seemed a bit tidier. You'd figure since it's some sort of tourist destination, the area will put it's best foot forward to keep the area clean.
I don't know any Chinatown anywhere that's not a little run down. It's an old, densely packed neighborhood with a lot of people and a lot of restaurants. It's a tourist area despite, or because of, being gritty and tightly packed. I'm not sure it would be as interesting all cleaned up.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
4. Chelsea - What's up with that area? An old nulcear waste site/brownfield? I figure since it was in close proximity to Boston, that it'd be nicer. What's the story with that area? It reminds me of a bit of the section called Delray in Detroit.
The Boston area was (and to some extent still is) a major manufacturing center. Chelsea, Charlestown, East Somerville, Everett, etc. have always been industrial places. There are plenty of places like Brookline and much of Cambridge that are near to Boston and super-nice, and others that were always industrial. Kind of the same in any northern city. For example, Pelham, NY is a beautiful wealthy suburb, while Union City, NJ is even closer to Manhattan and looks much like Chelsea. Detroit has Grosse Pointe, but also Hamtramck.

Chelsea has been trying to make improvements and has gotten better in some respects in the last 10-20 years. In the early 90's it was totally bankrupt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
5. Did they rename the Fleet Center to TD Bankworth Garden? If so, does that arena's basement double as another train depot?
They did, but it's Banknorth, not Bankworth. Fleet was bought by Bank of America, which didn't feel like paying for the name anymore. So they found a new bank, TD Banknorth, to sponsor, and returned "Garden" to the name. Just a couple of days ago they tweaked the name again and it's going to be called just the TD Garden or something like that. Whatever. Most people here just call it the Garden and leave it at that.

Underneath the Garden, as it has been for decades, is North Station. North Station is the terminus for the commuter trains to northern suburbs and the Amtrak Downeaster train heading to Maine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
Last question...

6. I was looking for the open fish market along the pier/wharf and i didn't see one. (something like Seattle's) Does Boston even have an open fish market? If so, where exactly is it.
There's nothing quite like Pike Market in Seattle, but the are fish markets around. For example, out near Boston's World Trade Center east of downtown is the Yankee Lobster Fish Market, and there's a decent new fish store right in the heart of the North End too.
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Old 04-16-2009, 09:13 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
4,730 posts, read 10,942,054 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
Underneath the Garden, as it has been for decades, is North Station. North Station is the terminus for the commuter trains to northern suburbs and the Amtrak Downeaster train heading to Maine.
Small correction to an otherwise excellent post that I could no way improve upon: North Station is technically behind as well as below the "Garden." The commuter-rail and Amtrak lines arrive and depart from the north side of the concrete box at ground level. Underground are the Green and Orange Lines of the MBTA, which once ran on elevated tracks above Canal St. Orange Line trains were rerouted from the el which crossed the river along North Washington St in 1975. In 2005, the Green Line to Lechmere was also "depressed."
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Old 04-19-2009, 07:22 AM
 
Location: Thumb of Michigan
4,489 posts, read 6,660,356 times
Reputation: 2522
Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
I assume you mean the E line on Huntington Av, which is part of Route 9. The answer is, yes and no. There are a lot of schools in that area. Northeastern, Wentworth, Berklee, Harvard Sch. Public Health, Harvard Med, Mass. Art, Simmons, Emmanuel, Wheelock. A lot of students live in the Mission Hill area along that trolley line. So there are plenty of students taking the E, but there are a decent number of non-students who live or work in those areas, e.g. work in the hospitals.
That's really something to be able to not worry about driving to and from school. Being able to jump on a quasi-train and be done with it would make going to school (and work) a whole lot easier.


Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
This depends on what you want. Compared to other cities or more outlying areas, it is expensive for the square footage you get, though other areas like Beacon Hill are probably more expensive. Due to its proximity to downtown Boston, plenty of young professionals with no prior direct ties to the neighborhood rent or own condos there. If you can afford it, and you want city life with less space, you could settle there.

As for welcoming, I don't think it's as much of an issue as in some other areas. I'm sure there are some longtime residents who are not thrilled with the influx of new people in the neighborhood, but people in the North End are used to suburbanites and tourists in the streets; now they're mostly used to newcomers moving in too and if you don't behave badly it's not really a problem.
That area reminds me of the (once) italian enclave that settled by the Ford Complex in Detroit. It too was along a river facing north that bend/curved with the land; also with little stores that dotted the inside of the neighborhood complete with fancy brick homes and apartments and a bocce ball court(now gone), among other things.



Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
I don't know any Chinatown anywhere that's not a little run down. It's an old, densely packed neighborhood with a lot of people and a lot of restaurants. It's a tourist area despite, or because of, being gritty and tightly packed. I'm not sure it would be as interesting all cleaned up.
Point taken. I'd figured if people wanted "gritty", they'd go to the "ghetto"!
It's definitely an interesting neighborhood, that's for sure!



Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
The Boston area was (and to some extent still is) a major manufacturing center. Chelsea, Charlestown, East Somerville, Everett, etc. have always been industrial places. There are plenty of places like Brookline and much of Cambridge that are near to Boston and super-nice, and others that were always industrial. Kind of the same in any northern city. For example, Pelham, NY is a beautiful wealthy suburb, while Union City, NJ is even closer to Manhattan and looks much like Chelsea. Detroit has Grosse Pointe, but also Hamtramck.

Chelsea has been trying to make improvements and has gotten better in some respects in the last 10-20 years. In the early 90's it was totally bankrupt.
Again, point taken, but Grosse Pointe and Hamtramck are not close to Detroit's core downtown center as Chelsea is to Boston. I'd figure it (Chelsea) actually being that close, the housing stock would at least be decent. I'm surprised no corporation has bought all the land and totally demolished/razed the area and build expensive condos and apartments.


Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
They did, but it's Banknorth, not Bankworth. Fleet was bought by Bank of America, which didn't feel like paying for the name anymore. So they found a new bank, TD Banknorth, to sponsor, and returned "Garden" to the name. Just a couple of days ago they tweaked the name again and it's going to be called just the TD Garden or something like that. Whatever. Most people here just call it the Garden and leave it at that.

Underneath the Garden, as it has been for decades, is North Station. North Station is the terminus for the commuter trains to northern suburbs and the Amtrak Downeaster train heading to Maine..
A typo on my part, thanks for the correction.

That's got to be neat to be able to live in Maine (full-time) and travel to Boston for work or whatnot. I absolutely love the tranist system in place in Boston. It opens up a whole wide variety of options to live your life accordingly in the New England area.


Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
There's nothing quite like Pike Market in Seattle, but the are fish markets around. For example, out near Boston's World Trade Center east of downtown is the Yankee Lobster Fish Market, and there's a decent new fish store right in the heart of the North End too.
Now that you mentioned it, i didn't walk far enough south and east on the piers/wharf to pass that area.

Darn it!

Thanks for your time!

One more question. How fast does the train from Boston to NYC actually go, provided it is with no stops (does that option exist?) in between?
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Old 04-19-2009, 07:36 AM
 
284 posts, read 1,022,554 times
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As far as I know, there isn't a non-stop train option from NYC to Boston, but the fastest time is about 3 hours 30 minutes (about $60-$100 one way depending on what time you want to leave). Or there are numerous buses with tickets ranging from $1-$15 dollars and they take about 4-5 hours.
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Old 04-22-2009, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Newton, Mass.
2,954 posts, read 10,801,105 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Grass Fever View Post
Again, point taken, but Grosse Pointe and Hamtramck are not close to Detroit's core downtown center as Chelsea is to Boston. I'd figure it (Chelsea) actually being that close, the housing stock would at least be decent. I'm surprised no corporation has bought all the land and totally demolished/razed the area and build expensive condos and apartments.

You know, Chelsea isn't really that much closer to downtown Boston than Hamtramck is to downtown Detroit-4 miles or so. The distance between Cadillac Square and Grosse Pointe Park is also comparable to the distance from downtown Boston to Brattle St in Cambridge and the estate area in the southern part of Brookline. Another thing to consider is that the Boston area is overall much denser than the Detroit area, so "4 miles" means different things here than in more spread out places.

"Decent" housing stock also means different things in Boston than in the Midwest. A lot of people moving here from the Midwest don't like what they find in Boston's housing stock, but I like it fine. I think Chelsea's had problems with schools, poverty, and crime but when I see the housing stock there it seems pretty standard urban New England to me. I'm not sure I see the problem. I had friends in Chelsea a while back and their house was quite nice (and had a great view of downtown Boston from the top floor).

While the US Supreme Court has allowed massive scale redevelopment by eminent domain (New London), that solution seems pretty heavy-handed. There has been private condo development in Chelsea and other surrounding areas, but I wouldn't recommend ignoring the people who live there and knocking down half the town to start fresh. While the town has problems, there are plenty of people there not interested in selling to developers.

These days, with the housing market and overall economy being what they are, there have been significant drops in value in condos built in "borderline" places like Chelsea, Lynn, etc. While many people priced out of more properous towns would be willing to buy an affordable place in a down-at-heel town seeking to redevlop five years ago, it seems far fewer are betting on places like Chelsea right now. A recent Boston Globe piece, however, took a more optimistic take.

Still don't want to go to Chelsea? - The Boston Globe
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