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Citizen complaint of the day: The mad gatelocker of Jeffries Point returns, this time with a steel cable

Cable lock blocking access to harbor walk in East Boston

An increasingly frustrated citizen files yet another 311 complaint about the person who responds to the unlocking of the gate across the harborwalk at the end of Sumner Street in East Boston by putting in a new lock - one that required some ingenuity since whoever replaced the previous lock made it impossible to simply slap a new one in:

Thank you for removing the lock and pin in the gate to harbor walk in Jeffries Point, East Boston. Unfortunately, it is locked again. I happened to be out walking and saw it was someone going / coming from the yacht club. Can you clarify: does the gate belong to the club or the city? If it belongs to the club, I’m not sure what can be done, but if it is city property, can you please remove the lock again and connect with the yacht club to ask it remain open so the path can be accessible to cyclists, strollers, wheelchairs, & city park vehicles? Many residents I talk to are frustrated that someone keeps closing it which is why I put the 311 request in. Thank you.

The Jeffries Point Gatelocker is back.
East Boston grumpy gus locking gate to Jeffries Point walkway.



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Lock it in the open position duh


Someone could probably remove the gate arm entirely. It looks like it's just a collar on a bollard so a few people could team up to lift it up and off.


Invest in bolt cutters instead of 311.


They call him: The Gatekeeper.

I need to use that name the next time I write about this (because you know he's watching and fuming in a nearby apartment).

I also heard from somebody who filed one of the 311 complaints, who says she has a bolt cutter and she tried to use it, but she was unable to actually cut through the lock.


Next time this asshat comes out, call 911, not 311.

This nonsense is also hampering emergency access.


does the gate belong to the club or the city?

It seems pretty clear that the gate is on city land, per the parcel map/. The yacht club does own the connector between Sumner and Marginal streets, but the gate is on City property.

I guess a bigger question is: why bother with the gate in the first place if it's meant to be left open? Is it some airport security thing?


The first time Adam shared this saga with us, I posited that perhaps it was the city locking the gate to ensure that vehicles aren't driving through the park as a shortcut. You'll find gates like this at a lot of parks- there are times when the Parks Department folk need to drive in, and there are times when you don't want anyone driving in.

That said, again, if the city wants the gate closed, that's the question the 311ers should ask. If the city wants the gate open, they can lock it to the post in the open position with a lock that's hard to break as a sign that if fact the gate should be open.


Whether or not the city wants it locked, it's not the city who is doing this -- they would not be using a dial combination lock or a cable. It's some rando.


Lock Picking Lawyer when you need him? But, honestly, why doesn't the city just lock the gate in the open position? Unauthorized locks on public property seem like a safety concern to me.


I think this comes down to a philosophical difference over the default position of a gate. If there were a gate standing alone in the middle of the Sahara, there would be disputes over whether it should be left open or closed. There would probably be posts on UHub about it.


The disputants:

The Gatekeepers
The Anti-Gatekeepers
The Defenders of the Keepers of the Gate
The Gate Liberators
The Reformed Liberators of the Gate
The Women'a Auxiliary to the Associated Beneficiaries of the Tolls Once they are Imposed upon the Gate

And with recognition of the geniuses who inspire such organizational titles:

Blessed are the Cheesemakers.


My guess is that it's either a yacht club member that doesn't want residents in their park, and each time a resident figures out how to open the gate, they come up with more inventive ways to foil residents, or it's a resident who doesn't want outsiders - especially gentrifiers from wealthier parts of the city - strolling around in the park, because it would attract other outsiders to East Boston and attempt gentrify it even more.

Either way, whoever doing this is a snob.


NIMBY love lock, indeed.

This gate also needs to be redesigned to allow bike/ped/powerchair access without this noxious "gatekeeping" bullshit by someone who needs to fuck right off and get a life.


The gate is to keep vehicles out of the park. And it needs to be redesigned because you don't have to block everything to keep cars out. They could also open and close it at dusk and dawn.

But I really don't get why the yacht club would care.


For most people, the locked gate isn't going to stop them from entering the park. There's a clear entrance from the sidewalk on the north side of Sumner Street. Take a look at the entrance yourself. The only problem is if someone is in a wheelchair. I'm not going to say that's not a problem, but that's a small percentage of the population.

One way or another, this is a pissing match for the sake of a pissing match.

Rent a wheelchair.

Take it to that place.

Try to navigate that brick curb, light pole and pole without the gate open.

Then come back and tell us how "easy" that is! Try it with a common walker format, too.

Then consider that someday you will likely join the people you throw under the bus so casually because we are all temporarily abled.

UPDATE: I took a look at some emergency planning data. The three census tracts that funnel into that end of Eastie come in at around 5, 8, and 9% of residents having mobility impairments. "Small percentage" my ass. (if I find a public available source for these data I will post it - all of Boston is around 6%)


Read my comment again. The discussion question is "what did I say about how easy I think it would be for people in wheelchairs to get in?"

There's also another entrance to Porzio Park from Jeffries Street, along with the entrance on Maverick Street that is less than grand by still wheelchair compliant. They could also move the utility box as it is blocking the sidewalk. A walker could handle that as it is now. But sure, let's make people in wheelchairs go on the street, right?


"The only problem is if someone is in a wheelchair. I'm not going to say that's not a problem, but that's a small percentage of the population."

I sure wouldn't want to own those words.


There’s a 5 letter word to describe that percentage, and I used it.

But let’s ignore the other entrances to the park. Fallon Field out my way has a closed gate like this one at one entrance to the park, yet strollers and wheelchairs somehow gain access.


9% is not a small percentage.

Also, step away from Leviticus 18:22 and skip ahead to 19:14.

Nowhere a majority.

It would be nice if you had substantive replies, but you be you.


When one in ten people are excluded by your infrastructure, that's not a negligible number in my book.


Numerically, I'm right. 9% or 6% or whichever number Swirlly throws out there still means that 91% or 94% of people aren't excluded. That in theory- because, as I note, there are several other entrances- people are excluded should be an issue even if the number is 0.5%.

I visited this park once, in 1997. I have no memories of it other than seeing the snow melt after the April Fools storm. I still have most likely visited it more times than many of the people commenting on this. Door open, door closed? Whatever the Park Department wants to do they should do, but they should lock it to the open post if they want it secure.

You think it is okay to deny access to public amenities for people that you decide should be marginalized and endorse some ridiculously petty behavior because it is convenient.

I can read that just fine, honey.

I have also read enough of a certain book to know that your attitude conflicts with the professed value system of the group that you constantly tell us that you are so intensely affiliated with. Perhaps that speaks to your level of literacy?


As I noted in the comment you responded to, there are other entrances that are completely accessible. The Jeffries Street entrance is at least as close to this entrance for all but 4 addresses in the area, and for those 4 addresses, it’s a half block away tops.

It’s incredible what people feign outrage about.


I can hear what you are saying about other entrances, but your comments are very dismissive. 1 in 10 is a significant number.

I mean them