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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

APPROVED - $4M Bond

That's all. Congratulations Lynn. You win the following:

ORDERED that the City of Lynn authorize the issuance of a bond in the amount of 4 million dollars for capital improvements and repairs to municipal infrastructure.  
 
 Provided further that $500,000 shall be expended on a wave attenuator and capital improvements to Seaport Marina
 
provided further that $600,000 shall be expended on air conditioning in the Veterans Memorial Auditorium
 
provided further that $150,000 shall be expended on capital improvements to the Grand Army of the Republic
 
provided further that $590,000 shall be expended roof and turf replacement to Frasier Field
 
provided further that $20,000 be expended on a flag pole for City Hall
 
provided further that $350,000 shall be expended for City Hall Server and Fiber Optics improvements
 
 provided further that $250,000 be expended for City Hall front entrance steps
 
 provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for protective glass barriers for City Hall offices
 
provided further that $100,000 shall be expended for the construction of a bathroom facility at Lynn Woods entrance
 
 provided further that $225,000 shall be expended for the Lyn Commons bandstand rehabilitation
 
provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for the Lynn Commons fountain repairs
 
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for school repairs
 
 provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for field reconfiguration and improvements to Barry Park
 
provided further that $150,000 shall be expended for the Breed Park Courts
 
provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Clark St. Playground  
 
provided further that $60,000 shall be expended for Cook St. Playground  
 
provided further that $60,000 shall be expended for Frey Park playground and courts
 
 provided further that $98,000 shall be expended for Gallagher Park playground and courts
 
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Magnolia Park playground and courts 
 
 provided further that $400,000 shall be expended for capital improvements to McManus Field 
 
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Sagamore St. Playground repairs
 
 and provided further that $22,000 shall be expended for Sheridan St. Playground repairs

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Represent Tonight at City Hall - $4M Bond Up for Discussion

CITY HALL
Council Chambers
Tuesday  December 18th, 8PM

BE THERE!!!! This needs YOUR VOICE!

If Downtown is to continue the pace, we need investments in infrastructure. To make investments in infrastructure we need financing. On the agenda tonight is a $4M bond to give us many pieces of the puzzle to continue to improve the "places" that make downtown and other parts of Lynn a destination.

It is contested, and it NEEDS people like my dear readers to come forward in support for the sake of Lynn as a whole. There are many areas of the city in this bond, the largest project being air conditioning for city hall. We see how packed Tatiana's and Blue Ox are on concert nights. We know that D'Amici's has called out auditorium nights as a huge reason for picking the site they picked for their new operations. The auditorium is currently dark late May-early September and that's too many months not to have  that impact creating a destination in Lynn, contributing several dollars to the local business district and having overwhelming impact on future development and an increase in our tax base.

You'll see in this bond the Auditorium, Lynn Woods bathrooms (VERY MUCH NEEDED), The GAR museum, The bandstand on the common, and playground after playground. So much recent study has been done on placemaking in urban environments. It's in how we create "place" for our residents and business community that we will see more and more people making Lynn a home for their entertainment, leisure time. a place to visit, a place to hang out, not a place to leave when you want to do those things.

Here is what is being discussed tonight. YOU NEED TO BE THERE to voice support. It's never been more important. If we want economic impact in Lynn, we need these "places" improved. We must stand up as citizens and ask them to get the financing to get these things DONE, once and for all.

ORDERED that the City of Lynn authorize the issuance of a bond in the amount of 4 million dollars for capital improvements and repairs to municipal infrastructure.  
 Provided further that $500,000 shall be expended on a wave attenuator and capital improvements to Seaport Marina
provided further that $600,000 shall be expended on air conditioning in the Veterans Memorial Auditorium
provided further that $150,000 shall be expended on capital improvements to the Grand Army of the Republic
provided further that $590,000 shall be expended roof and turf replacement to Frasier Field
provided further that $20,000 be expended on a flag pole for City Hall
provided further that $350,000 shall be expended for City Hall Server and Fiber Optics improvements
 provided further that $250,000 be expended for City Hall front entrance steps
 provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for protective glass barriers for City Hall offices
provided further that $100,000 shall be expended for the construction of a bathroom facility at Lynn Woods entrance
 provided further that $225,000 shall be expended for the Lyn Commons bandstand rehabilitation
provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for the Lynn Commons fountain repairs
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for school repairs
 provided further that $75,000 shall be expended for field reconfiguration and improvements to Barry Park
provided further that $150,000 shall be expended for the Breed Park Courts
provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Clark St. Playground  
provided further that $60,000 shall be expended for Cook St. Playground  
provided further that $60,000 shall be expended for Frey Park playground and courts
 provided further that $98,000 shall be expended for Gallagher Park playground and courts
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Magnolia Park playground and courts 
 provided further that $400,000 shall be expended for capital improvements to McManus Field 
 provided further that $50,000 shall be expended for Sagamore St. Playground repairs
 and provided further that $22,000 shall be expended for Sheridan St. Playground repairs

Thursday, December 6, 2012

KISS - Keep it Streamlined, Silly

See... I told you I was going to be nicer with my writing.  To be honest, I don't know that the lack of city planner or streamlined permitting is stupidity. I think people are thinking about this and working towards better solutions in Lynn City Hall. I know the Chamber has been on this like a hawk. I hope progress is being made.

The City of Boston gets it. Streamlined permitting and licensing is a key to sustained economic growth. Make it difficult to do business with City Hall and business will bring the proposal to another city. Period.

The City of Boston just announced this. City Hall to go Food Truck. Permits, Licenses, Voter Reg, BPL cards, e-cards, gift cards, and more... WOW! 



I'm not saying we need a permit food truck, but it would be nice to not hear from every business owner in Lynn, and every politician that is helping a developer or business owner make progress, that permitting and licensing is a nightmare. That the rules are so vague and politicians, community groups, and residents are able to stall needed progress because they are loud. It just shouldn't be that way.  There should be clear rules, clear policy, clear process. A workflow of how to get it done and less exceptions to a stated strategy allowed.

Dukakis Center and the League of Cities did a study on Lynn and came to the same conclusion. The Metroploitan Area Planning Council is now working on a grant in Lynn and have identified a lot of issues with our land use and no clear plan (or city planner) in place to make sure the right things happen.

I recently watched this video on "placemaking." It's the urban planning term of the year. The idea of creating place, not just a building or a park, but a place people move in and out of and want to inhabit.  Interesting thoughts for a Thursday.

Kudos to Mayor Menino and Boston City Hall for being an example to urban areas everywhere.

-Corey


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Single Gem in the DOT conversation

Just listened to a few painful hours of people whining about the Blue Line. As you know, I'm a fan of those people, but come on. It's not going to even budge from where it is on the priority list until the economy is in much better shape.

I heard a single gem though in one gentleman's response while he was talking about a rumored Soccer Stadium coming to Wonderland via the Kraft family. He said put a commuter rail stop in at Wonderland. This got me thinking two things.

1. Is our system of commuter and subway broken, should it be combined. Should the Blue line simply go to Rockport by switching over at Wonderland. I know. I know. There's a million reasons someone will tell me that's assinine, but it's still a fun thought. I was just in Chicago at O'Hare airport and took their Blue Line from O'Hare 25 miles into Downtown Chicago. Sure beats the 10 miles or less ours goes now. The cost (drum roll) $2.25!!!

2. Is it as simple as a adding a commuter rail stop. People could switch over to the blue line via a short walk. There's still the issue of cost but if you added something that simple that made it dead easy for Salem, Swampscott, Lynn folk to switch over, maybe you would see an incredible increase in ridership at a lower cost for those zones.

Fun to think about. I still believe we're screwed on that until big federal money comes back in to play after an improved economy gives more confidence to fed and state government to spend on large projects like this.


I'd like to hear more about these potential roads (spurs I think they were being referred to) to improve our connectivity to Rt 1, 95 and 128. Anyone know the history of the discussion that was to have a part of 95 come through Lynn?

I'm trying to get this blog talking again like it used to. Readers are still here. Why so quiet?

-Corey

You Can't Get There from Here...

Without Major Tolls and Expensive Train Rides (that keep getting more expensive)

I expect this to be the major theme of today's discussion with the Department of Transportation. Add to that our inability to pave a road in less than a month and you have quite a list of transportation challenges in the city of Lynn. Recent wins from certain government money have improved Lynnfield Street and now Wyoma Square. Both intersections sorely needed help.  We have made extreme advances on the Ferry Project for the Waterfront due to the leadership of McGee's office, the EDIC, and many, many others. What else do you need to get in and out of Lynn?

If we talk about the Blue Line again, what is the real issue and what are the real economic impacts to having a system that comes through Lynn and terminates in Salem. After a recent trip to Chicago, where for $2.25 I went from the city center out on the CTA Blue Line out about 25 miles to O'Hare airport past countless neighborhoods going through various stages of revitalization, it makes me wonder why our T is so lacking.

What are your transportation issues?

Talk with State Leaders and the Department of Transportation tonight at City Hall.

December 5, 2012 6-8 PM
Lynn City Hall
City Council Chambers, Floor 4
3 City Hall Square
Lynn, Massachusetts 01901





Tuesday, December 4, 2012

We Three Trees...

So, there has been some confusion. There are three tree lightings. Three tree lightings are better than one. Here is why:

Three tree lightings bring three sets of people downtown.
Three tree lightings bring more beauty to downtown.

Let's view them as three gifts to the Downtown Lynn economy instead of asking for everyone to come together and just do one. Bah Humbug to that! :-)

For those who need clarity:

TONIGHT - Lighting the tree on the common at 5:30PM and then showing Elf at Lynn Auditorium at 7PM. All Free of charge.

THURSDAY - Lighting the tree in Central Square at 5-8PM. LynnArts Holiday show and Lynn Museum shopping will be open. Ornament making at RAW Arts. Pictures with Santa by the tree (Bring a camera). FREE

THURSDAY - Lighting a tree of remembrance at All Care VNA at 5:30PM followed by an informal reception.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Tis the season

Nothing excites me more than city politics. I think that has been obvious throughout the life of this blog.  I've been purposefully quiet on that front for months now as life in Lynn has shifted to getting more done for the community and the economy of Lynn. Running a non profit and railing about the establishment doesn't go together. So what's in store over the next six months.

1. You can no doubt expect every player in the race for Mayor to be very active and engaged. Mayor Judith Flanagan Kennedy, rumored contender Tim Phelan, and you have to imagine one or two others will join this fray. Possibly someone from the massive young democrat contingent? Perhaps it's time for Walsh or McGee to have a go? Whatever happens, it's going to be another epic fight for the air conditioned office.

2. Speaking of air conditioning, you can rest assured a plan and the funds will exist in the next six months to finally air condition the Lynn Auditorium. Now very well understood as a huge source of economic benefit for the downtown, we have to have more nights and it must continue throughout the summer.  Pay attention to the public hearing on December 18th on the $4M bond.

3. City council shakeup is a sure bet. If Phelan runs for Mayor(let's just say that's a given), a council at large seat will be open.  Ward 5 will be vacant due to Brendan Crighton's recent move out of the ward. Ron Mendes has announced a run against Darren Cyr and there is rumored challenger in Ward One.

4. All signs point to a stronger business community downtown as D'amici's makes a huge investment on the corner lot on Liberty. Adding to the successful Latino Business Association on the same block, the recent opening of Bernie's and a new parking commission looking at the Andrew Street lot and others  that area will finally start to improve and better connect the City Hall and Central Square revitalization efforts.

5. Marketing has already taken a turn for the better. While Chronicle may not have depicted everyone's Lynn, it depicted a good Slice of Lynn, and that was worth more than we can imagine. Next year we will see results of a large grant to brand the Arts and Cultural District. A strategy will be developed and initial steps taken in the next six months.


A lot of work and a lot of politics ahead. I plan to take more of this approach to my writing in the coming months. I want to do more to keep you informed, tell you how I feel (this is still my blog) about issues (not people), and keep moving forward. I am actually shocked that the readerships hasn't suffered at all in the recent months despite a low level of new posts. Thanks for the loyalty. I hope to give you more to chew on in the coming weeks.

In the meantime come to the tree lightings. Dec 4th @ city hall or Dec 6th @ central square. Check lynnhappens.com for complete schedule.  Buy tickets to Kenny Rogers at Lynn Auditorium, come have dinner at the many restaurants Downtown, come to a holiday fundraiser (might I suggest December 8 HolidayXS to benefit Arts After Hours) and have a safe and happy Month of Holiday Parties.

-Corey


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