Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Is your word as good as your fence?

Remember when folks living downtown, myself included, were mostly of the mindset that it was cool to have Allcare VNA remain in Lynn and Downtown but they should do right by the area by sticking with the Market Street Vision plan that the city had hired a company to draw up?

Here's the super-fast version.

The Market Street Plan called for storefronts. Allcare VNA said "No way." There was a public hearing, where much to my dismay, lots of folks thought we were opposed to VNA outright. Well, most of us weren't. A lot of people were just misinformed about our more nuanced position. We wanted storefronts. We couldn't get storefronts, but, we had some small victories.

For example, they were willing to give on the fence. We did not want a fence greeting people as they entered downtown - especially a fence around a very non-retail looking structure. It sends the wrong message, even more-so now that the Central-Exchange Arts District is in effect. Many of us were happy to hear that Allcare would drop the fence from its plans, and they built it without one. Until today...

Let's say, for the sake of discussion, the fence doesn't come out looking all that bad. What about the fact that they went back on their word, without even talking to us, first? What kind of precedent does it set for future development? Do we not trust City Council, or do we not trust Allcare - or is it both?

I'm about to head over to LynnArts for the LPS Art show and Mural unveiling. They'll also announce the new Central-Exchange Arts and Culture District - until someone's buddy gets to trample on that win - or, we put a fence around it.

Posts are in place around the entire corner for what appears to be a very generic black fence, matching the one lots of folks dislike around the Community College campus.

unrelated to the post:

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Fleeting Display of Guerilla Art and Memorial Day

Homelessness is a big problem I can only hope people more qualified than I am are trying to solve.

Homelessness among vets is a big problem that makes mostly everyone scratch their heads - I think. If you serve your country in a war, you probably deserve a little bigger safety net than your average citizen. But what do you do when a vet with psychological disabilities refuses help? I believe that's the issue with Tom, at least from what I've been told.

Attempts have been made even just to.. get him to move along to.. where ever elsewhere might be.. but within the law, the MBTA has limits to what they can do. The city also has their legal limits. Go to any city, and you'll find they've never been able to completely manage the issue. After all, you can't make people disappear. You can't make all public spaces private. Those aren't answers, anyway.

Today, Tom made an artistic statement. Maybe he was thinking about Memorial Day.

Local photographer and business owner Bob Bond manage to snap a few with his cell phone before it was gone.

Thanks, Bob, for permission to post.

Probably should read what the song is about - thanks, wiki!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

One window down...

...and hoping this opens doors to more windows.

Thanks to DTL resident Kevin Sampson, an unsightly building in Central Square is already improved after some good window washing and new drapes. He got permission from Mayo, then assembled a group of volunteers from the neighborhood. Even just the new drapes make a huge difference, but rotations of art displays are forthcoming.

This is not the first time area storefronts have been decorated. RAW decorated the windows of 33 Central, before the windows were damaged, and then through artist Jason Cruz, painted the boards. An intern at LynnArts some time ago added construction-paper and pictures to a building's windows adjacent to them, but they are now sun-faded and sorely in need of a make-over. Perhaps next time, they'll also use curtains and wires to hang paintings, photos, or even set back a curtain to box the windows for sculpture - and light it at night. This is done regularly in empty Downcity Providence buildings with the help of an active Merchant's Association and the landlords, themselves. Are you listening, Lynn landlords? The ones in PVD actually help themselves!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

They Betty Boop'd Central Square

I'm stuck inside working, but I can hear a RAWsome party going on just down Central Square from LynnHappens/LivinginLynn headquarters. The density of chalk drawings increases closer to RAW Space, and is a welcome addition of color after a dreary weather spell.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Young Beasties in 1982

Two obits in a row is not usually my style. But, here's what the Beastie Boys were like in the beginning, and they kept being punk through their hip hop years, which is what I believe made them stand out as a unique act. The beats may have brought frat-boy fans by the droves, but the punk edge they maintained as well as their more insightful sampling, kept the arty kids into 'em.