We supposedly live in one of the bluest states in the country – even our Republican governors could easily qualify as moderate Democrats in less enlightened regions. So how is it that our state, long dominated by a self-avowed party of progress, finds itself increasingly paralyzed with traffic gridlock and seemingly stuck with a ramshackle public transportation system?
The rise of Amazon and ecommerce is fast turning into an extinction level event for malls, which now face the same fate as all the neighborhood stores and shops they once shuttered on Main Street. And our own bevy of retail bazaars here in Massachusetts is hardly immune to the pressures
Developers behind the proposed Winthrop Square skyscraper thought they had their hands full when parks activists started hollering about the shadows it would cast a quarter mile away on Boston Common. But that was before they met their would-be Financial District neighbors.
You have to hand it to them: Supporters of the “Great Neighborhoods” campaign on Beacon Hill certainly picked a snazzy name for their proposal to reform the messed-up Massachusetts housing market. But the recipe for residential bliss by the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance was recently stripped of a key ingredient: rental housing.
Massachusetts is a state that prides itself on its smarts and its history, but when it comes to the debate over the future of Boston’s only public university, memories are maddeningly short and intelligence is unapparent.
Did you hear the news? There’s no housing crisis after all! In fact, we have never had it so good, with homes more affordable than they have been in 40 years, not just in Peoria and Pittsburgh, but in Boston, San Francisco and New York!
Sometimes I wonder if we’re all living on the same planet here in Massachusetts. There’s Planet Reality, of which I am a proud member. On our generally fact- and reason-based planet, we love our beautiful state.
Goodbye granite countertops, marble fireplace mantles and ornate woodwork and hello mid-century modern décor straight out of Don Draper’s Manhattan crash pad.
We are still a long way from the giddy, greedy and fraudulent days of the real estate bubble circa 2005. But some of the ingredients that came together in such explosive fashion a decade or so ago are swirling around once again.
There’s just one word to describe plans to build a bridge to reopen a homeless shelter on a real-estate-gold-mine of an island in Boston Harbor: Boneheaded.
Did one of the biggest decisions in Boston development history hinge on a tawdry deception?
Las Vegas billionaire Steve Wynn just hit a massive pothole in his long and bumpy road to opening a casino in Massachusetts.
Are you pumped that Amazon might pick Boston or even Somerville for its new global headquarters? Be careful what you wish for. Mayors and newspaper columnists, lawmakers and business executives alike are stoked over the possibility that Jeff Bezos might pick Boston for his company’s new digs and bring with him 50,000 jobs. But apparently the folks who run this town would rather tiptoe around the elephant in the living room than spoil this delightful fantasy of Boston as Silicon Valley East.
NIMBY suburbanites, rejoice: President Donald Trump has your back. The Trump administration just took a big step toward gutting a noble Obama-era initiative, one that required cities and towns across the country to submit plans for tackling racial segregation and inequality in housing.
It’s no mystery what we need to do to bring down the crushingly high home prices and rents that make life in Massachusetts increasingly difficult for all but the wealthiest few. The problem has been mustering the political leadership and willpower to do it.
We all know nothing lasts forever, and that includes real estate bull markets, which have a tendency to crash just as everyone starts believing home prices won’t ever go down again.
Maybe “corrupt” is too strong a word for President Donald Trump’s tax plan; maybe not. But the seemingly willy-nilly way it doles out rewards and punishments to various segments of the real estate world is not exactly the best advertisement for either its probity or overall vision.
Forget about all those dire warnings that home values will take a hit thanks to the GOP’s tax bill. Instead, it’s time to start worrying about already high home prices getting even higher and more unsustainable than before.
Gov. Charlie Baker’s recent push to spur construction of 135,000 new homes over the next eight years certainly sounds great in a market starved of available listings. But to stop NIMBY suburbs from blocking new homes and apartments, sweet talk alone won’t cut it.
Do we have to let our already messed up real estate market get as crazy as California’s before we take action? That should be the question here in Massachusetts – and in particular on Beacon Hill – following the passage of a sweeping housing reform bill out on the Left Coast.