September 10, 2010


Last night I went to the Worcester Court Club to put in two miles on the tread mill.   Like it there since, I can put on the headphones and have my choice between 4 or 5 differnt channels to watch.   Last night I imagined that I would catch some pre-game hype for the Saints-Vikings.   Instead I watched Chronicle do a spotlight on Sommerville.

It was as if Paul was talking to me go through the headphones detailing the various projects going on throughout the City.  It made Worcester look pathetic and I could not help but think "why the hell does Paul not go back there?".   Truth is I have been getting the feeling that Paul is in fact going to spend less and less time in Worcester and that truly is sad. 

Amazing in this city we put the heads of CDC's on a pedestal, but a guy sinking his own private money into the City of Worcester is seen as no big deal.     Ever since Deval Patrick came to Worcester and touted Southgate Place, costig approximately $300,000, three days after a story in the Telegram detailing the Hadley apartment costing $510,000 each, I have never been so down on the City of Worcester and I can not blame someone like Paul moving back to Sommerville.


Unknown said...

Sommerville cares about Sommerville. Worcester cares about bars and parking.

Jahn said...

My wandering Friday morning mind:

1. T&G reports CM MOB is worried about loss of tax revenue due to all the foreclosures in Worc. Translation: get ready for a tax rate increase and a tax dollar amount increas on you 24% impaired market value Worcester home. Reality is that for many, many, many of the foreclosures the mortgagor bank or the owner bank continues to make the tax this story is at best minimal full disclosure on foreclosure. Shame on you Michael and the T&G for lack of in depth investigation before running with a story.

2. Does anyone ever notice how when crime stats drop, the so called public safety industry starts crowing, thumping their chests, and smiling. Yet when shootings, stabbings, and murders make the news...mum is the word.

3. Paulie, I looked favorably on that Konnie Koffee Klatch you had. Good job.

4. Would someone please show me the in depth, DETAILED numbers as to how pushing for early retiremnt saves the city money in the long run. This early retiremnt baloney only kicks the can down the road a few years.

5. Standing T&G headline: Main South Prostitution this really news in Worcester? Like Mr. Ronald C's regular letters to the editor and like 12" snow storms in January,...prostitution in Worcester really aint news.

6. 2 months now that Massport has been in charge at the airport. Now I know the last 2months are called the summer doldrums, but Massport has known for at least 1 yr that they were taking over up on airport hill. I have yet to see any changes, addition, upgrades, new restaurants(s), RFP's, and the like. I mean even the name change to Boston Woooostaah Metro Airport and related signage could have been done by now. Massport = the 2nd coming of Jesus Christ for Worc Airport??? Once again color me from Missouri.

7. We need a public hearing, a civilian review board, and an asphalt paving expert(s) to determine what streets in Worc are in the worst condition and get re surfacing priority. This process is so loaded with favoritism, it is almost criminal.

8. To SS & TC, I expect to pick up Sundae's knews-papaaaah this fall and see from you dudes some real good, in depth dirt on some of the impropritites that pass in this city as just the usual motis operandi.

Gud weakend two awl

David Z. said...


I love Somerville and try to get there as much as possible. But I love Worcester, too! I have thought the same thing about Paul especially when he recently seemed to have left the blogging community. He did finally post to explain his absence (traveling).

I missed the Chronicle piece about Somerville but I did watch the one about Worcester. If you lived outside of Metro Worcester and watched the Chronicle episode about the city, you would have said to yourself, “this is a city that is hitting nothing but homeruns!” Let’s face it, these Chronicle stories are nothing but Chamber of Commerce puff pieces.

Now as far as Worcester, quite frankly I’m more bullish than ever! MCPHS has an ever growing presence downtown! CitySquare is finally a reality which will reconnect our city (I was downtown yesterday and it already looks like an active construction site)! Entrepreneurs such as the owners of Armsby Abbey and Dr. Gonzo are bringing some much needed hipness downtown! The owners of Armsby are even opening a bakery downtown this fall! A native of Minnesota opening the Worcester Academy of Music on Irving Street which will bring students into our urban core along with the new Charter School that also opened on Irving Street. For those of us that remember the “old” days when many of our schools were located downtown, the students bring vitality and business to the entire area so this is a great development! I was in the “Village of Piedmont” yesterday and it is getting better and better ever day (due in large part to visionaries like Paul)! Hopefully Paulie’s NOLA Fest will continue and folks will “discover” it in droves bringing more publicity to the neighborhood! CSX Expansion ultimately bringing more commuter trains to Worcester! Market rate housing to start this fall at the former Lincoln Sq. boys club! Gateway Park which has another building going up (or soon to go up) which is already almost completely pre-leased! Worcester Airport poised to take off under Massport’s leadership! The transformation of the Franklin/Portland Street area by the Mayo Group into an urban village that is focusing on street level retail and student housing on the upper floors! And the list goes on & on…

Now that’s not to say that we don’t have issues that need to be resolved. The no-lo housing has to be stopped now. Worcester is over the 10% threshold already. I agree with you that the CDC’s have way too much power in Worcester. Our 2-tiered tax rate is destroying the commercial base in the city. The article in today’s Worcester T&G about declining city revenues due in large part to foreclosures should send warning signs to everyone that we need a much stronger commercial base I.e. a more tax friendly tax structure. Too many empty storefronts not only downtown but throughout the city. Roads that are deteriorating fast. Too many social service agencies concentrated in D4, etc. etc.

Any urban area has their share of things that need to get better but if you really think about it; Worcester is in a pretty good spot right now!!!

Bill Randell said...


Mass College of Pharmacy has been a godsend for downtown. Also agree about CSX and the airport.

The problem is housing!! Now way the people entrenched in power are going to let up on the low-no income housing. If 40B gets repealed, it will get even worse.

Right now if you think anyone is sinking hundreds of millions of dollars to build condos at CitySquare, you are delusional. They key to the future of Worcester depends now on the housing in the city core and guess what the Mayor's task force wants to tax these residential developments commercially???

Housing is just going to go more lo-no income.



Jahn said...

David, you do raise a lot of good points about things on the drawing board to be positive about.
BUT........ :)

THe MCPH taking over the hotel is in it self good, but we cant stress the need for more taxable commercial property and then tout this MCPH takeover in its totality as being positive. I mena the city treasury is probably taking around a $3/4M to $1M hit due to the loss of personal property tax, real esate property tax, and Hotel room tax that was left on the table when the hotel closed. File under: non profited again.

You may well be correct about these made for TV C of C puff stories....that begs the question however, as Bill always asks....where's the Worc C. of C.?
File under: C. of C. M.I.A.

The Worc academy of Music....great but its probably another non taxpaying non profit, but I suppose it's better than an annex of the Comm Health Link locating there. We did have a tax paying for profit school in Worc but the Indian Hill Injuns ran em out to West Boylston. File under: Another tax base scapling.

I remember the old days .....of high school thugs chillin' at the City Hall bus stop and causing problems. File under: boyz will be boyz?

If bill is correct and no one right now will build market rate condos at City Sq.......then why would they be built by Mayo on Portland st? File Under: time will tell

David, I do agree M. T. storefronts, carpetbombed streets, CDC's, & social service agencies are too ubiquitous in Worcester. GMTA ..sometimes... :) File under: Fire Jim McGovern?

Paulie's Point of View said...

I am starting to stand firm in your corner Knowtain...

Jahn said...

BTW, what is the status of the PIP shelter closing?

Will it close?


Have they reduced the size of the client population, esp in winter?

I ask b/c I see yet another house break criminal has given an address of 701 Main St.

Anyone catch that T&G piece about SMOC suing Framingham's +ss. Reading between the lines, the town might be running for cover on this one?

Paulie's Point of View said...

you rarely mention the unbearable, unlivable urban neighborhoods as if they do not exist Dave Z...........other than me as a new person to the city the past number of years to go along with the rest of the city gadflies...can you name one new face on the cityscape who has gotten involved and made some way in this city? Just one young person who has grabbed the bull by the horns and made some noise of change? Almost everyone is a fucking follower out here. I asked this very question to Buckpaxton the other day and he couldn't name one...this city is as stagnant as it comes of new fresh idea people..can you name one Pol out there that makes you go WOW...on my blog I have a pic of Somerville Mayor Curtatone with the Governor going over plans for the extention of the bike path..our Mayor in Woo does this phony bike ride to his inaugeration..when was the last time you heard him speaking about bikes or bike paths since? Instead he is out there hyping for more work based $500K many "real" workers do you know living min $500K flats-I do not:>) And not one City Councilor speaking up about this hossshite!

I watched that Chronicle piece last night Dave and noticed so many new faces that I have never seen doing stuff in Somerville..and I have the two biggest events in the city and folks pay to attend them:>)

We could fit everyone doing stuff in Woo in one big room in my house...well we might need two cause I have gotten bigger this summah:>)

Jahn said...

Paulie, I got a nose better than Buddy had for some things and methinks you got youse a sweetie in Summerville. you aint foolon' me.

Paulie, the vast majority of bike paths follow old RR beds. Where in lords name is Worc. going to find teh real estate to lay down a bike path? If Worc. had abandoned RR rights of way we would not have Union Station, commuter rail , and new freight yard being built. Then we'd really be dead.

My point is that bike paths often exist where RR tracks have been pulled up due to lack of industrial commerce in an area. Luckily the tracks still pass through Worcester. Cape Cod Bike path being a perfect example. Yes some new paths are built, but the only ones I have seen come with new highway construction. Maybe we could start with a bike path from Oread Place to City Hall :)

Luckily the tracks still pass via Worcester. You know, I wonder to myself if there are any stops in Worc where the RR actually still picks up freight?

Hey about a bike path around Greenhill park. We can use the proceeds from the current auction of the Green family's estate auction to fund it and we can dub it Joe's Greenway

I reiterate, I told both you boyz last fall thsi Joe Obrien was going to be a socialist disater for Worcester and I do not think he's going away anytime soon. Mcgovern crowns him may to be and all teh Worc. city employees follow in lock step with their votes. I recall i was roundly criticiazed for jumping too fast on Joe and not giving the man a chance. I repeat my self again, but I was surprised that 2 guys who are more in tune with Worc & more politically savvy then I ever dreamed of could not see through this Jim Mcgovern clone.

Paulie's Point of View said...

I was with a Leominster gal for sometime...been hangin with a Somerville gal the past few months but she lives in Salem, NH and doesn't mind traveling to Woo...I have been in the south for the past 17 days..just got back in to the office yesterday...

I have two new projects in Somerville..well one new one and working on another but only reason I have been out of the city..I aint going anywhere..last thing I have ever done is let chumps push me:>) I got the video to porove it:>)

I like my house I am living in..I have some nice friends out here and I enjoy this banging:>) We are winning..I just told Bill that Firewood Cafe on Chandler Street does not happen without the key hardwork the past seven years of the Chandler Street Business Association..

Paulie's Point of View said...

you learn by mistakes..that Suttner story on how he got that house opened my eyes and the same with Haller..these guys are doing nothing but preserving their turf and dreams..

but I digress for a paths are now being placed on roadways-go to Cambridge someday..I would have liked to have seen one on Chandler and the repavement..shite we never even got notified that Chandler was being done over this summer....hip hip hooray for our D4 leader and the Mayor..more great leadershiop communication to it's minions or maybe they did not even know:>)

Sprout said...

I got married in Somerville...

Paulie's Point of View said...

I love you Sprout:>)

Unknown said...

Hey Paul (and Bill),

I live in the Village of Piedmont, too! And I love where I am. I live across the street from some movers and shakers - Nat and Mihoko of the Saori Weaving Studio, who have brought more arts events to Worcester. I see some energy in the city, though I do agree that CDCs seem to be too powerful yet don't do much productive with their power. One example is the Green Island Neighborhood Center (at Crompton Park), managed by South Worcester Neighborhood Improvement Corps. The energy I see is from individuals - me, you guys, the Canal District Alliance, PSNNC...

Anonymous said...

WOW! Thirteen postings and not one scolding from Paulie for Bill using the headline 'Slumerville'. All that cornbread on the Southern roadtrip may have softened up Paulie!

Harry T