No Fisher College Expansion

I, the undersigend oppose Fisher College's proposed expansion plans.

Fisher College is planning to roughly double the number of students living on the block of Beacon Street between Arlington and Berkeley (see map on reverse) by: Relocating students from a dorm in Bay Village Converting three historic Brownstones currently housing Boston residents to dorms Converting existing administrative and classroom space on Beacon St. to dorms Moving administrative offices and classrooms to Arlington Street Expanding 118 Beacon into what is currently Back St. parking. Fisher already exceeds the neighborhood's carrying capacity, strains city services, and causes major traffic congestion for thousands of Boston commuters. Traffic More than 16,000 vehicles use this block of Beacon Street daily according to DOT. Fisher frequently disrupts traffic, narrowing Beacon Street and causing backup that can extend all the way back to the state house as well as block egress from Storrow Drive. Large Greyhound-size buses double park mid-block as long as 45 minutes to pick up and drop off Fisher students for every athletic practice and game, as well as orientation and other activities. Delivery trucks serving the cafeteria and vending machines double park daily. Commuting students are picked up and dropped off all day long. Students jaywalk day and night because the campus is on both sides of the street. Because students compete for scarce parking, workmen and other delivery trucks must double park. Density/Parking This is an historic neighborhood with limited space and aging sewer, water, and electrical systems. Historic brownstones now house 80+ students creating an unsafe situation. Fisher parks 20+ vehicles on both sides of Back Street. There is no loading dock for deliveries, no room for additional staff or student parking. Security/Noise Neighbors have noticed increased drug use by students outside of Fisher's video cameras, spilling onto the adjacent parks and public spaces including the Fiedler Bridge, the Boston Public Garden, and further down Beacon Street. In good weather, there is often street noise late into the night. Smoking/Loitering/Trash This is a residential neighborhood with children walking to schools, the Esplanade Playspace, and the Public Garden. In warm weather the sidewalk becomes almost impassable with students hanging out and smoking since they have nowhere else to go. They discard butts, food wrappers, cans and other litter around the neighborhood -- usually only picked up on Fisher property.



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    Bella Ertik, United States

    1 year ago Comments: I’m opposed to Fisher’s expansion on Back Bay. Here are the main reasons: • Basic civil rights: The permanent residents and the Fisher College share a place on Back Bay, Beacon street in particular. The expansion of the college should not be a unilateral decision of the Fisher college authorities. Permanent residents’ rights should be respected and their needs should be taken into account. • College needs: the college is expanding and will continue to do so. Additional 48 new dorms will not dramatically improve the dorm situation, as overall college needs are definitely bigger. Even if this would temporary improve the current situation, the college will need more in the near future. Allowing just one other building to be erected would present opportunity and means to continue expanding in the area, not only for the College but other student-oriented small businesses as well. Evidently, Back Bay area cannot expand. Therefore, the college should solve this problem by looking for a better solution (e.g. bigger and modern dorms in other parts of the city which are still able to accommodate more than 100 students • The quality of life of the permanent residents is already affected and will be more affected with the expansion of the college: o Neighborhood: Equilibrium of peaceful and respectful cohabitation of the permanent residents of Beacon street and students from the Fisher college is already broken. These students stay in dormitories temporarily, while the rest of us have made decisions to permanently reside in this neighborhood. We don’t want to come home and feel as if we reside on the student campus. We already feel this way as a community, and we don’t want this situation to worsen. o Noise level: There is currently a problem with students on the streets, walking in groups, chatting, laughing, drinking celebrating etc. This is acceptable in a campus environment, but Back Bay neighborhood is not that. We cannot live with open windows, even with closed windows it is not always calm and therefore it becomes difficult to rest or work from home during the day or night. Assuming an increased student presence, the noise level would only increase and further impose on the pre-existing residents. o Lack of parking: Other streets have parking places for the permanent residents. We have parking meters along the street. It is already difficult to bring home food, furniture, any heavy bags etc. Additionally, there is no place for handicapped people to park. Aside from the students who will likely use more parking, there are also staff to worry about. All buildings and residencies that cater to students require maintenance, custodial staff, food, equipment, repairs. These additional cars and people should also be taken into consideration. • The value of the properties: the value of our houses will be affected as well, as no one would want to live on the student campus. It must be kept in mind that in purchasing these homes we MADE A CHOICE regarding the specific neighborhood we wish to reside in, and the specific environment and atmosphere we want to be part of. Imposing on the formed community of Back Bay would wear and tear the fabric of what this neighborhood means and the environment we have created through change. To accommodate more students, there would be cheaper businesses and low-income services. The values of homes will certainly decrease. Therefore, there are other circumstances to consider. What if some of us lose job, became bankrupt or ill or handicapped? We will be completely ruined with the inability to sell our properties at least at the price we bought them, not to mention that it would be even more difficult to live in the environment of such a neighborhood.
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    LeeAnn Coleman, United States

    2 years ago Comments: -
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    Sonia Kowal, United States

    2 years ago Comments: -
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