Order for a hearing to discuss the proliferation of electronic billboards in the City of Boston
Filed with Councilor Flynn
I’ve heard from constituents and, including from the Association of Downtown Civic Organizations (ADCO), about the safety concerns of electronic billboards for drivers, bikers, and pedestrians, as well as concerns about the impact of light pollution, environmental concerns, and the disruption of their time outside in our neighborhoods by added electronic stimuli. Time outdoors, to clear our minds without looking at screens and encountering advertisements engineered to maximize distraction, is incredibly important for our mental health and wellbeing. If we allow electronic billboards to proliferate unchecked, it could permanently change the experience of our city for the worse. I look forward to hearing from even more residents at the hearing and working with residents, Councilors, and the BPDA to ensure that we effectively regulate billboards in residential areas.
Order for a hearing regarding potential zoning amendments to be proposed by the Boston Groundwater Trust
The Boston Groundwater Trust is a crucial steward of groundwater in Boston, a shared and vital public good. The Boston Groundwater Trust has compiled a great deal of additional information about water and woodpile cutoff elevations across the City since the Groundwater Conservation Overlay District (GCOD) first went into effect, and we should update our zoning code to reflect this new information.
Order for a hearing regarding a supplemental snow removal program for Boston
During our latest Nor'easter, many constituents reached out to me because a certain crosswalk, walking path, entryway, or intersection wasn’t cleared sufficiently by a neighbor or property owner. The cases I received in real-time could be dealt with, and Public Works did a great job of clearing sidewalks and paths that aren’t on their usual route. But, other calls I received too late — such as a constituent who told us a few days ago they weren’t able to get their groceries or feel safe walking on the sidewalks near their home. The fundamental issue is that the City is currently responsible for clearing roadways (car lanes and bike lanes alike), but not for ensuring there's a clear path of travel for pedestrians, even at key intersections. For wheelchairs, strollers, and vulnerable pedestrians, this can result in an untenable situation that extends for days or even weeks.
I learned from constituents, however, about other cities and towns that have a low-cost service of plowing sidewalks when there are heavy storms. This could also provide a local workforce development opportunity, in addition to helping our neighbors walk safely to their homes, work, and essential services following a heavy storm.