With Boston Mayor's Departure, Evaluating His Imprint on the City

With longtime Boston mayor Thomas Menino's announcement that he will not seek re-election, Paul McMorrow assesses the five-term mayor's impact on the shape of the city.

While the construction cranes that dot the city's burgeoning Seaport district may be the most visible signs of the changes to the city made during Menino's time in office, McMorrow argues that the mayor's biggest impact has been on the relationship between Boston's neighborhoods and downtown development.

"Menino became the first modern Boston mayor to straddle both these worlds," McMorrow says. "For all his efforts to cast himself as an urban mechanic focused on the nuts-and-bolts minutiae of city government, Menino relished the role as city-builder as much as [former mayor Kevin White] did."

"Menino found a way to tie massive downtown construction projects to the brand of small-ball, neighborhood-level politics that enabled him to dominate Boston for 20 years. Instead of making downtown development a zero-sum game, he seeded the benefits of downtown construction throughout neighborhoods."

Full Story: Menino made development work outside downtown

Comments

Prepare for the AICP* Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
AICP CTP Storefont Display

The first online AICP* CTP exam prep class

Are you ready to take the AICP* Certified Transportation Planner exam?
Priced at $245 for May exam!
Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

New! 4th Edition of the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs just released.
Starting at $24.95
Woman wearing city map tote bag

City Shoulder Totes - New Cities Added!

Durable CityFabric© shoulder tote bags available from 9 different cities.
$22.00