Beacon Hill market ordered to stop letting workers park cars in neighboring alley

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today that DeLuca's Market can keep using a narrow alley off Beacon Street for once-daily trash removal, but told the market it can no longer use the space for parking cars or trucks.

At issue was a 1947 agreement between the market and the owners of three neighboring residential buildings.

The condo associations of the three buildings sued DeLuca's in 2013 to get it to stop all motorized use of the passageway, ownership of which is split down the middle between the market and the residential buildings. The residential trustees cited clauses in the agreement that limited use of it to pedestrians and hand carts.

But the restrictions on use expired in 1997 and the trustees never tried to renew them, the court said.

At the same time, the court rejected DeLuca's argument that it had been parking vehicles in the alley for so long it had gained the permanent right to park vehicles there, under a legal concept known as "easement by prescription."

In its ruling, the justices agreed with a Superior Court judge who had awarded DeLuca's the right to use the passageway for trash removal once a day.

The judge found that it is not possible to park in the passageway without interfering with others' right to pass. Thus, we agree that no party has the right to park in the passageway. The judge also concluded that a temporary stop of a vehicle in the passageway once per day to load trash for transport to another location does not unreasonably impair the King's Chapel and LLC plaintiffs' right of passage. On the record presented, we cannot say the judge's conclusion was clearly erroneous. So long as continued temporary stopping once per day does not unreasonably impede the King's Chapel and LLC plaintiffs' easement rights, this use may continue.

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    Comments

    How about

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    Growing up. Or leaving. You seem to have a lot of problems coping here, name calling, bearing false witness, etc.

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    I'm

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    unsurprisingly OK with their response.

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    Poor little thing

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    Somebody SAID SOMETHING BAD ABOUT CARS!

    Cars being sacred, afterall!

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    Nope

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    There are times when griping about cars is valid, but Kinopio is once again being a horse's ass by using a dispute about proper access to an alleyway (the residents are right, IMHO) to do his shtick this time.

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    LOL

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    See - I can laugh at your comment, too.

    And I am, unsurprisingly, OK with your response.

    Oh, and leave my height out of this. Personal attacks aren't cool.

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    Suggestion

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    How about if Kinopio counts to 10 too? His/her knee jerk anti-car, anti-driver spew is nothing but reactionary nonsense.

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    38

    "reactionary nonsense"?

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    I don't think you know what the word "reactionary" means. Perhaps you meant to say "reactive".

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    I agree with 963

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    Kinopio's act was tired and hateful a long time ago. Maybe he never got that toy car he wanted so much when he was 5 years old. According to him, all the evils of the world are the fault of cars and their drivers. LIke so many extremists he's wrong about nearly everything. He offers no useful commentary. I would feel sorry for him, but his confrontational extremist attitude makes that impossible.
    So thanks for your simple retort 963. I agree with you.

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    Wow! Looks like ....

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    ... the lazy, entitled motor chauvinists are extremely thin skinned as well! Hahaha!

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    See cybah's comments

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    We use the rear entrance to our building about 90% of the time. Neighbors have successfully petitioned the city to use police enforcement to keep people from using the alley as a delivery spot. Trash trucks are not an issue because in addition to being necessary, they are attended and don't pose a fire hazard as they can be moved if necessary in an emergency.

    It's not just an inconvenience - it can be a nuisance and even a hazard for vehicles to block narrow lanes in the city. Sounds like the courts agreed.

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    The agreement expired in 1997

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    But the condo associations didn't take the Market to court about the parking issue until 2013. So apparently neither the alleged inconvenience nor the alleged safety issues (fire dept access) weren't issues in the intervening sixteen years.

    The judge's ruling aside, it should be pretty obvious that this isn't about inconvenience or safety - it's another example of condo associations asserting their power to make life difficult for others. (because OMG people are getting FREE parking in an alley). In other words - THERE WASN'T A PROBLEM here before (as the past 20 years have proven). But we'll sue to get our way because we can.

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    Lots of possible reasons it took so long

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    1-they didn't know there was a legal remedy and got new/better info
    2-they tried to negotiate, got settlement for a while and then the market started abusing the privilege
    3-the market was fine until they had the fire and then started causing problems after being closed for a few years
    4-it took a while to get all 3 condos on the same page

    Condo associations (especially smaller buildings) rarely want to go to court. Too much money and nobody has time for this crap. If it makes it to court, probably a good reason, which is why the condos won. Hard to believe 3 condo associations would go to court over a trivial matter.

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    Using alleys for deliveries is a GOOD thing

    It's one reason alleys were built in the first place. (see Back Bay, for instance.) Much better to have the deliveries in the rear instead of double-parking out in front.

    Parking in the alleys is an entirely different issue.

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    Trucks still park in the alley to deliver

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    And it's still illegal. There are commercial spots near us on the side street and they've been warned to use those. Most are pretty good now.

    Keep in mind that some larger deliveries can leave the truck unattended for 30 minutes. Very different from someone running a grocery bag or two into the house.

    This wasn't a grocery bag

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    All the MIT frats and ILGs on Bay State Road got deliveries through the alleys. These were for 30-70 person houses holding nightly dinners.

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    You're entitlement is just as

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    You're entitlement is just as boundless. Who moves to a car-centric city and demands it be car free immediately? An entitled asshole, that's who!

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    A city built along cow paths...

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    ... was never intended to be car centric. Those of us who have lived here a long time have seen the loss of public transportation and traffic congestion along with the public health problems they bring worsen as the incoming population of car owners increases. It never fails to astound me when car owners throw a hissy fit when they think their assumed right to use public property as private storage space is threatened.

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    Cow paths??

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    Nah. There is zero evidence that Boston streets layouts are based on cowpaths. And so what if they were? This city was originally built without indoor plumbing. I suppose you think we shold all shit in an outhouse. Cars are here to stay.

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    Never going to happen. Cars

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    Never going to happen. Cars going electric yeah. Going away? Not likely. Owning a car hardly makes one lazy either. Forcing your lifestyle on others makes one an extremist however so you may want to get help with that before you grow a beard and end up living in a cave in Afghanistan.

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    However

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    seen the loss of public transportation

    Chicken or Egg?

    I drive because the T sucks ass.

    I also love to drive. And ride a motorcycle. But really, the T just stinks.

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    Car-centric

    Who moves to a car-centric city and demands it be car free immediately?

    I thought we were talking about Boston.

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    Maybe move back to Texas?

    Either that, or, maybe, read about the history of development in Boston for the 350 years before the most recent 50 years.

    Get this: some of the longer thoroughfares designed during the Victorian era were designed with zero car lanes and bicycle lanes in each direction!

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    Kinopio's Post

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    Kinopio's post is lazy and poorly written and it does not establish a coherent opinion with which a discussion can be engaged. To me, Kinopio's post seems to be a throw-away jab unrelated to the article. What about this legal decision demonstrates either the laziness or the entitlement of car drivers?

    Is Kinopio in favor of the market whose employees are parking their vehicles in an alley?

    Is Kinopio in favor of the residents who want to prevent market employees from parking their vehicles in the alley?

    Who knows?

    What Do The Neighbors Gain, Other Than Fewer Parking Spaces?

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    IMAGE(https://elmercatdotorg.files.wordpress.com/2017/09/deluca-alley.png)
    Only a single user like the market could effectively coordinate parking multiple vehicles in the narrow gangway, and still allow for the trash truck to visit. Now, those cars will need to occupy other spaces in the neighborhood, essentially reducing the number of spots available for everyone else.

    While pedestrians could walk through the passage, few would want to, as it runs parallel to Charles Street, just a few steps away. One might envision dedicated carriage and bicycle parking; which the neighborhood certainly needs more of; but that can't be done and still allow for trash removal.

    It sounds like the plaintiffs' motivation was simply: "I can't park there, so I don't want anyone else to park there".

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    You assume....

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    ... the plaintiffs want to park there or even need parking places. Perhaps they'd like to be able to exit the rear of their properties and not be blocked by cars?

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    Right of way

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    Isn't the alleyway also a right of way for the properties that abut it? It also is a fire hazard as it can be used as a fire lane.

    I'm about to get egged for saying this but..

    I find it funny that you say this Elmer, as you're totally against space savers, which is the same thing as occupying this alley with cars.

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    I agree with the need for an

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    I agree with the need for an unobstructed fire gap between the buildings.

    It would be one for firefighters to haul in hoses, etc... from the ends. The only way a fire-fighting vehicle will get down that alley is if they bring the horse-drawn wagon over from Congress Street.

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    What do they gain?

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    They gain an unobstructed alley. How is this hard to understand?

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    Why can't they provide.cots and sleeping bags for help?

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    Can can live in the back storeroom, no need to clog our beautiful neighborhood with their foul contraptions. Of course, there would have to be an early curfew so they won't be on the streets and stoops of The Hill doing deugs, drinking 40s, and making a fuss.

    I suppose occassionally they'll need to go back to Dorchester, Everett, Lynn, Quincy or some other such place. That's what public transit is for.

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