MBTA opens spaces in several subway stations to retail use - but not popcorn sales

The Boston Business Journal reports the T has some space in several stations (Back Bay, Forest Hills, Harvard, Alewife, North Station, South Station, Airport and Malden Center) it's looking to rent for retail use.

The Journal notes there are several prohibited uses, including the sale of tobacco, scratch tickets and popcorn.

Popcorn? T spokesman Joe Pesaturo says the T has had enough with popcorn because it attracts pigeons and "too much of it ends up on seats and floors of subway cars."

Ed. note: Dunkin' Donuts HAS to rent one of the Back Bay spaces - the walk between the two current Dunkin' stands is really just too long.

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I'm betting he's

By on

I'm betting he's grandfathered if still there. Ditto for the hot dog/popcorn guy just before the Forest Hills platform at Downtown Crossing.

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So you can't sell tobacco,

By on

scratch tickets, or popcorn if you want to lease space from the MBTA.

Funny, the newsstand at North Station sells all three. And it's been in business for far less time than the popcorn guy at Government Center.

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North Station

If you mean the ground-floor railroad station level of North Station, I think the landlord is the TD Garden, not the MBTA.

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My understanding is that

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the Garden leases the waiting area to the MBTA, who then leases the space to vendors.

And gusee what - popcorn attracts piegeons just as well in a commuter rail waiting area as it does in a subway station.

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No Popcorn

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Popcorn vendors are not being kicked out but there is no grandfather clause. Anyone who has sold popcorn in the past can no longer do so, but according to the MBTA it shouldn't be a problem for them because they can still sell water, soda, candy, hot dogs, etc.

I have been getting popcorn from the lovely man under North Station for years now. He is concerned because everyone loved his popcorn and very few people are coming to him now for snack alternatives. Despite the fact that I rarely if ever see popcorn messes on the Green or Orange lines, this man will probably have to relocate or lose his business now.

Just another little "F you" from the MBTA.

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Yeah popcorn is still sold in

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Yeah popcorn is still sold in a few places (I think you can stil get it at the cart on the southbound Orange Line platform at Downtown Crossing). Reminds me of the days when you could buy peanuts at the Public Garden to feed the squirrels.

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You can buy peanuts at the

By anon on

You can buy peanuts at the Public Garden to feed the squirrels... people do it all the time. Mr. Frosty sells them.

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Back in the '70s there were

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Back in the '70s there were coin-op peanut dispensing machines (like the old-timey bubblegum machines) right at the edge of the pond. Apparently you were supposed to be feeding the ducks a la Make Way for Ducklings, but I always fed the squirrels.

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The Harvard popcorn guy

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For several years there was a vendor selling popcorn in the main lobby of Harvard station, after the current station opened in the 1980s. I still remember his very vocal pitches -- "Get your fresh popcorn here!" etc. He seemed like a nice guy; my wife and I both enjoyed his humor, but we never bought anything from him because we aren't popcorn fans.

An important part of his pitch was always, "Don't worry if you don't have time to get some today, because I'll be here every day!"

Then one day he wasn't there. We still wonder what happened to him.

This has to be at least 15 years ago, maybe more.

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The T is a flea market

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Booze is sold daily at Clarks in South Station
Popcorn is sold at Braintree
Cigarettes and lottery cards are sold at Quincy
Drugs are sold at Harvard Station daily
Sex is for sale at Back Bay
Knives are for sale at Forest Hills
Green Cards are for sale at Maverick
Counterfeit Passes are sold everywhere

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Mmmm... Park St. Pizza

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Anyone remember the pizza sold on the Eastbound side of the Green Line tracks at Park St, circa late 60s and 70s? That was amazingly good; it was hard to pass through that station late in the day without succumbing to the urge to buy a slice.

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How about

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a cupcake store?

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