Part of Centre Street in JP to also become Avenida de las Americas

The Jamaica Plain Gazette reports on the new signs, going up six years after being approved by the city council along Centre between Hyde and Jackson squares.



    Free tagging: 


    If I said to someone "I'm

    If I said to someone "I'm going down to the Avenue of the Arts," I'd get a blank stare until I added, "Huntington Ave." That's what I imagine will be the reality of this second name.

    Also, call me scrooge, but who is paying for these signs?

    If in 20 years

    you haven't accepted that diversity is a good thing and stopped using words like "pander" to refer to groups other than yours having input in the community, can we put an "asshole" sign on you?

    Honoring diversity requires respecting difference

    So the person who was sarcastic about what to call the area in 20 years has a differing opinion. They do have right to have an opinion whether it is shared or not. But trying to shame them by ridiculing them with personal insults? The purpose of shaming is to shut a person down, to censor them and hope that they will disappear. That is the opposite of diversity.

    Last time I checked honoring diversity requires respecting people who disagree - even about diversity.

    You get to have an opinion

    You also get to be ridiculed if your opinion is a foolish, racist, or otherwise stupid one.

    Free speech means you get to express your opinion - it doesn't make all opinions sacred ... even "religious" ones.

    Sorry, but "ignorant-American" is not a protected group.

    Amen Eeka. Some people will

    Amen Eeka. Some people will find a problem with anything. I am Boston born and bred and the child of two Latino immigrants. Yes, little things like this do give me a sense of pride in my city for acknowledging our presence and contribution. It's sad but not surprising to see folks consider it pandering. Oh well.

    Where is Boston in this

    To me, the generic "Avenida de las Americas" doesn't speak to Boston. If we must pander to ethnic pride, why not use our local sensibility and name it after a significant Hispanic Bostonian? That was the thought process in naming Melnea Cass Boulevard, a prominent Bostonian in the Black community. Avenida de las Americas is a long, cumbersome name devoid of local roots and will soon be forgotten.

    Oh go hug a tree or something

    It's not like they renamed Kneeland Street "Shanghai Avenue". Why not give the name to, I don't know, a place where Hispanics actually still live, like East Boston, instead of a place they have long been priced out of. This is PANDERING by bleeding heart liberals, pure and simple.

    Plenty of Hispanics still live in Hyde Square

    The Hyde Square part of Jamaica Plain is still very Hispanic. In particular, as of the the 2010 Census, the census tracts around that stretch of Centre Street was majority Hispanic. It's true that more Hispanics live in East Boston and I don't really know how housing prices are moving relative to other neighborhoods, but it's not like Hyde Square has been totally whitewashed.

    Firstly, the majority of

    Firstly, the majority of Chinese in Chinatown, at least while I was growing up, hailed from Taiwan and southern regions (Canton province, Hong Kong, and thereabouts), so naming Kneeland St. to Shanghai Ave. wouldn't do much (something more relevant, for example, might be Kowloon Ave. [plus, how badass does a street called "Nine Dragons Avenue" sound?]). There seem to be more mainlanders these days, but even so every major part of China is so different from the next that it still might not make any sense to name it for Shanghai unless there has been some significant contribution to local culture from that region (which I don't personally recall there has been). Additionally, Kneeland Street is more than just Chinatown. It might make more sense to rename Beach St. (Hey, there's an idea!)

    Secondly, there are still a great many Hispanic residents of JP. Most of my street (and in fact, neighborhood) is Hispanic. You could almost divide JP in half - on the northwest side you'd have the gentrified portion, and the southeast end is the "Hispanic portion" (for lack of a better term). JP is far more than a single street. Furthermore, Hispanics live in many neighborhoods of Boston. This could also very well happen in East Boston down the line (waaay down, if the six-year lead time is any indicator).


    The use of the word "pandering" implies that those being pandered to are of a lower societal or moral stature, or are otherwise distasteful, which may lead one to infer that someone accusing another party (political or otherwise) of pandering may him- or herself consider the recipients of said pandering (panderees, if you will) to be of such stature, or believe him- or herself societally or morally superior.

    JP in 20 years...

    ...will be the phase 3 gentrifiers who have moved in pressed up against the few Caribbean Latinos who remain - most likely in the projects and a buffer of house around them.

    JP is the stronghold of the Cuban-Dominican-Puerto Rican community. Eastie has your Salvadorans and Colombians. Sprinkled about are other Central Americans and South Americans. I'm not sure where you could put an "Avendia de las Americas" where it wouldn't be out of place in a decade. The entire city is gentrifying faster than you can say market rebound.

    I'm still wondering where people are moving to. Brockton? Lynn? Quincy? Aren't parts of those places gentrifying too? And what do you call the opposite of gentrification?


    Or on a more local level, Springfield? Worcester? The South End fifty years ago? Any neighborhood or city or town that has lost whatever economic engines that once drove it. Think of any place where big fancy houses have been carved up into cheap apartments, where stores are closed up, once solid buildings are derelict or abandoned. It does happen and then often it cycles around--the people living in the South End now are essentially, for better or worse, the same people that the neighborhood was originally developed for...

    Re Hyde Square, trying to define or label a neighborhood with a sign seems silly to me, but I also really dislike the notion that in twenty years it'll still be some kind of yuppie-hipsters vs. Latino borderland. I know plenty of Hispanic yuppies--all kids of immigrant parents from the DR, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Colombia. It's the notion that some people seem to have of permanent disenfranchisement or poverty endemic to one particular group that's truly disturbing.

    It's 6th Ave

    As someone who used to live in New York, I can attest that *no one* ever referred to "Avenue of the Americas". Only tourists. True New Yorkers always call it 6th Ave.

    I hate to say it, but someone has to

    I think an anon (as opposed to me, a pseudo anon as I cannot figure out how to sign on) got into trouble saying this in a different way, but I have the feeling that naming things like this is a bit of "jumping the shark". The North End is my main example. Somehow it got to be known as Little Italy, by tourism people decades after the Italians showed up, and now it is more yuppified than anything else, with a bit of the flavor of the old. For someone like me, that's sad. Same with Southie and the Irish, without a stupid nickname.

    I certainly don't begrudge the Hyde Square/Jackson Square Hispanic community anything, but how many residents of the old "Jamaica Spain" are now living in Roslindale or Hyde Park?

    Sorry to be the downer in the matter.