Chinatown? Bay Village? They are so done

There's a Midtown Boston?

Pilotblock noticed this map in the window of a South End real-estate broker, who's replaced Chinatown and Bay Village with "Midtown" (and dramatically expanded the range of "Waterfront" and de-annexed the Seaport from South Boston).

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    Given

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    This is only one real-estate brokers map, however I definitely believe that the Seaport District / Fort Point will be regarded as its own separate neighborhood in the near future rather than just a section of South Boston.

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    Was always Fort Point before

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    Was always Fort Point before the redvelopment started. Nobody called it southie.

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    Depends

    I feel like the first time I heard it called part of Southie was when that neighborhood was trying to fight the Pats' new stadium there. Growing up it was Fort Point (or maybe no neighborhood reference and just "Northern Avenue" if you were talking about something on the water).

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    Northern Ave.

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    I never remember that area being called South Boston when I was growing up in the 60s and 70s. My parents would go to Jimmy's Harborside or Pier 4 but didn't really consider themselves in Southie, even though it kinda technically is. I still find it jarring when a newscaster at the Moakley Courthouse says "live from South Boston".

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    Tough call

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    Yes, the older buildings by the Fort Point Channel may have been called that, but the old Commonwealth Flats, where the convention center and all the new development is happening, would be too far away for that.

    The reality is that when no one lived there, no one cared, but since the people of Southie put their chair out when the Krafts tried to build their megaplex there, they have a level of dibs.

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    They definitely have a stake

    Don't get me wrong, I don't blame the folks in Southie for calling "dibs" on all of the development there. They already had a lot of cut through traffic and the more that develops there the worse it will be. My point was more about how the "neighborhood" is defined and I don't think anyone thought of that area as being part of Southie prior to the more recent development push.

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    Not true at all, I used to

    Not true at all, I used to hang out at the Channel during the day as a very young child, and after talking to old timers 60+ from Southie about the area(I work on drydock), locals have always referred to the area as a part of Southie.

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    Different perspective

    I am not going to dispute that, but I never heard of that area being referred to anything but "Fort Point" and certainly never heard of it as being called part of Southie. As I just said in another comment since Southie is already a bit of a cut through neighborhood they certainly deserve to have a say in what goes on there no matter what the geographic area is called.

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    Nope

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    I definitely believe that the Seaport District / Fort Point will be regarded as its own separate neighborhood in the near future rather than just a section of South Boston.

    It's all SoBo. The yuppies won't allow any succession.

    Also...
    - Fort Point is in SoBo
    - Seaport doesn't exist. Is the South Boston Waterfront or SoBo Waterfront which is in SoBo.
    - Lower End doesn't exist. It's the West Side
    - City Point is gone. It's the East Side.

    It's all South Boston (or SoBo for short).

    - The Original SoBo Yuppie

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    Did you mean

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    It's all SoBo. The yuppies won't allow any succession.

    Secession instead of succession?

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    You can

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    put lipstick on a pig
    polish a turd
    ...

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    Disgusting. If we don't

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    Disgusting. If we don't preserve Chinatown and Bay Village Boston's fabric will unravel. Bay Village is such a small, quaint place and it has come a long way. And longtime Chinese businesses and residents need to stop being bullied by the green greed.

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    Seems like an odd thing for a

    Seems like an odd thing for a real estate agency to do, Midtown at least. When you google Midtown Boston all you get is page after page of the Midtown Hotel.

    There was one exception, where First Boston Realty is hawking the term to mean The Financial District, Government Center and Downtown Crossing (which itself gets confusing because it combines the words Midtown, Center and Downtown all in the same web.)

    These days businesses and Real Estate professionals need to be aware of the fact that their products and names will be run through a search. If I were in the market for a condo/home and visited this agency I would be very confused because they seem to be the only people who seem to think that is Midtown Boston means.

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    Midtown Cultural District

    is a name that goes back a couple of decades, a BRA designation intended to preserve downtown theatres.

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    Real Estate agents

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    Real Estate agents play fast and loose with neighborhood boundaries all the time. Recently saw a Fenway property on Mass Ave advertised as "Back Bay."

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    Methadone Mile will be

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    Methadone Mile will be camouflaged with a name like "Innovative Art District" just to get a brokerage commission from an uninformed artist loft Buyer. LOL. I read recently about old brick buildings around MM being refurbished into art galleries and lofts.

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    Already has one

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    The sign on the corner of Melnea Cass and Mass Ave welcomes you to the Newmarket Industrial District.

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    My favorite

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    Example of this was when I found an apartment in Allston Village (up Harvard Ave past Brighton Ave) as "walk to C-line!"

    I mean, you physically can walk to the C line...but you wouldn't walk past the 57 and the B line to do so.

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    Isn't St. Botolph Street considered part of Back Bay

    even though it's closer to Columbus Avenue than it is to Boylston Street? And during its last decade or two before it was torn down, Loew's State theatre on this part of Mass. Ave. was called "Back Bay Theatre".

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    Greatly depends

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    The real estate crowd likes to call St. Botolph Back Bay and it does have Back Bay residential parking, not South End.

    On the other hand the Neighborhood Assn of the Back Bay defines the border as Huntington plus the Prudential complex. Historically it's my understanding that the railroad yard split the Back Bay and South End before the pike and the Pru which puts it in the South End.

    As someone points out, these are very unofficial borders so I guess you live where you think you live.

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    also, Back Bay Station

    is several blocks south of Huntington Avenue. This did not start with the Orange Line relocation of 1987, as two previous railroad stations on the same site were also called Back Bay.

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    Sorta, but maybe not. The

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    Sorta, but maybe not. The couple of few blocks of residences south of Boylston/Dalton down to Christian Science, and east of Mass Ave were redistributed to be in the Back Bay a few years ago for voting purposes but nothing else (like the Back Bay historical/hysterical district). I still vote west of Mass Ave in the no-man's zone that is East Fenway (technically West Roxbury, I think?, and that neighborhood is serviced by USPS with an obsolete name, Astor). The area west of Mass Ave between Huntington, Boylston, and the Fenway is a shadow neighborhood claimed whenever it's advantageous to the cause.

    And my area is a bizarre little place, Saint Germain and Clearway. It's almost easiest to call it part of the Prudential/Christian Science complex. (Especially since Christian Science owns much of the land under these buildings.) Quirks like this are why I love this town.

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    I lived on Albermarle (a cul

    I lived on Albermarle (a cul-de-sac between St Botolph and the SW Corridor) back in the mid-90's, and all the cars had Back Bay parking permits (not that parking permits are necessarily the definitive indicators vs. culture/feel). I didn't have a car, so I didn't actually deal with the city myself--but I remember noticing it on cars parked on the streets. I only lasted two years there before the price of that little studio went beyond my means, and now that I think of it, I haven't really been around that area since then to say whether it's the same situation. But at least back then, the city considered it Back Bay, although the neighborhood feel really shifted over that one little block between Huntington and St Botolph.

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    Neighborhoods are hardly

    Neighborhoods are hardly anything official--especially in the world of real estate, which deals in smaller sub-neighborhoods anyway. Something as big as Dorchester or Roxbury isn't going to tell you much about the local block you are looking to live on. I also felt that Southie lost the "South Boston Waterfront" to the "Seaport District" long ago, at least culture-wise, regardless of what kind of map someone creates.

    Even official gov't agencies have somewhat different definitions of official neighborhoods:
    http://www.cityofboston.gov/neighborhoods/
    http://www.bostonredevelopmentauthority.org/neighborhoods

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    Neither the map nor the list

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    Neither the map nor the list in the links have entire neighborhoods deleted, merged, then renamed.

    Many neighborhoods have fuzzy borders (on what side of Ringer Park does Allston end?) or may splinter (is Mission Hill a part of Roxbury or JP or its own neighborhood? I'll go with the latter) but Chinatown and Bay Village are distinct neighborhoods. However, Chinatown is Chinatown and Bay Village was a mostly gay neighborhood for years, so my bet is a real estate agent trying to wrap both neighborhoods in a straight white family friendly package came up with the second definition of "Midtown" in three years.

    And as someone pointed out above, there definitely are "official neighborhoods." Try painting your townhouse purple on Beacon Hill if you doubt that. Or park in the North End with a Fenway parking sticker.

    Sorry if I'm not being generous, but it's been a long month and I'm exhausted with watching a city I love being bleached

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    You misinterpreted what I

    You misinterpreted what I meant--I was speaking with respect to the real estate business and how things are viewed much of the time.

    And the point of the two agency links was to show that the BRA has split South Boston into two neighborhoods. Plus I thought the two links would maybe be interesting to people in general, outside of this topic.

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    N'hoods

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    N'hoods are really fuzzily defined and there have been a lot of discussions/arguments on here as to what parts are part of what. And like the English language, I like the fact that the n'hood definitions are elastic - responding to people's needs. There really is no one definitive definition of the "real" n'hoods (there are though, as you pointed out, the definite boundary lines of the BRA's n'hoods, as well as other entities' maps).

    The one time that flexibility is irksome is when it's being done by a realtor for lamely crass marketing purposes. "If I call it 'Back Bay' or associate it with a new, 'hip' n'hood that nobody has ever heard of and sounds vaguely New Yorkish, I can get $50K more for this crap-ass condo!"

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    My apologies

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    I thought you were speaking for yourself, not a take on realtorthink.

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    Zip Codes

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    This wasn't just a realtor making up neighborhoods. The names and labels, maybe they did, but the map is very clearly zip code-based. For example, 02116 (Boston, and considered the Back Bay zip code) includes all of Bay Village and parts of the South End between the Orange Line and Tremont St. 02111 (Boston) is Chinatown, Leather District, and parts of the Financial District/Downtown. 02121 (Dorchester) actually includes a fair amount of what is considered Roxbury, including Grove Hall.

    Based on their zip code map (and remember realty stats are mostly zip code-based), they had to pick names for each zone. How do you do that fairly when they cross neighborhoods?

    I think the blame here is actually on the Post Office and their somewhat arbitrary zip code boundaries.

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