State begins to crack down on property owners who think they can just shut the Harborwalk

WGBH reports on how the ICA is promising to behave and let the public continue to stroll along the harbor on land that's supposed to be open to the public even on nights when it charges guests $20 to mingle at exclusive parties there.

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    Conservation Law Foundation

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    Based on the linked article, CLF is the impetus driving the state Dept of Envrionmental Protection crackdown, and it has filed a lawsuit against the DEP and a developer to stop access closure elsewhere. Good on them.

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    Yep

    I'm glad they exist as a motivated, funded organization for this kind of reason.

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    "Just Ask"

    The last sentence shows how spineless the state intends to be:

    The ICA responded with a written statement saying the museum has and will continue to provide public access during ICA events, and that they’ve met with security staff to make sure public access is maintained.

    In english, this means walkers will need to specifically ask security about continuing on their walk and security will likely escort the walkers through the party. It will technically be "open" but only to those who know the password ("I'm on the harborwalk") and for people who have no intention of lingering.

    It's a sham. No group should be allowed to do anything along the walk which prevents free and open public access. No passwords, no questions, no private parties, no limits. Unless it's physically unsafe to be on the walkway the public should have unrestricted access 24/7.

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    Dubious

    That's a whole lot of dubious reading between the lines. The ICA statement is throwing the security under the bus for any past problems with public access. That's all. Not sure where you're getting the idea from that quote that the public will be escorted through the space...

    Security

    They didn't say that they would stop closing off the harborwalk, only that they'd "Talk to security". Someone made the decision to close the walkway for that $20 members-only thing and it wasn't their security department.

    If they were serious they'd simply apologize and pledge to never close off the walkway again. Security guards wouldn't enter into it.

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    Let's get out the paint

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    Make a big painted line that makes it clear what is public and what is private.

    Maybe some chalk if you want it to wash away.

    This started years ago with

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    This started years ago with the addition of a few more tables every year. It's now completely blocked. The Aquarium also blocks it off for weddings, etc. Annoys the hell out of me. It's public space as in not private.

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    Harbor Hotel

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    Though I've never experienced complete blocking of access, the way they impede the flow through there is more troublesome to me than what ICA did, because it is every day during the summer, not just for special events. It really makes it seem like you are in the way walking through, and it seems to get worse every summer. I have no idea if what the hotel is doing is against the access rules, but it feels like it should be.

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    Aquarium should be on the target list as well.

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    My family and I have been turned away several times from the harborwalk by the aquarium because aquarium sells a private wedding ceremony on their patio then tries to block people from the public portion.

    Thank you to CFL for working to keep public space open. Public officials have failed in this effort.

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    They closed Yawkey way for

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    They closed Yawkey way for the red sox. You can't walk there either. It's a public street.

    Close

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    They didn't close it, they sold it. Not to the highest bidder, but to the only bidder they allowed.

    Anybody have an update on the status of the lawsuit from the other person that tried to bid?

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    Not Chapter 91

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    Chapter 91 is very specific to water front and tidelands.

    Even if there's (supposed)

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    Even if there's (supposed) construction blocking the Harborwalk after the ICA, the public should be allowed into the dead-end section of the walk adjacent to the ICA. Including during private parties.

    As of this past Friday (8/11

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    As of this past Friday (8/11/17), the ICA is still shutting down the public space for private events, while claiming the whole area "closed for construction."