Earlier this summer Uber briefly test-marketed a water taxi service in partnership with BHC and according to their blog post on Tuesday, the program was a success. In the image below (I swiped it from Uber’s blog), arrows point to UberBOAT district destinations. The thicker the arrow, the more trips took place.
Uber’s blog shares a number of findings from this test run but the stat that impressed me was they say demand was about 7x greater than supply and remained consistent through out the trial period. Based on that stat, it would seem to me that there is a good possibility this service could return on a more permanent basis. You can read more about the trial run here in Boston in Uber’s blog post, here.
The Boston Globe reported that celebrity chef Mario Batali will open an 8,700 square foot restaurant at 11 Fan Pier in the Seaport District by the end of this year. The restaurant will be called Babbo Pizzeria and will include three bars – one each for cocktails, pizza and antipasti. Plan designs also include a large patio and private dining space. While the Seaport has seen many restaurant openings in recent years, this is one of among a handful that I’m excited about. I have high hopes and expectations for Babbo Pizzeria’s wood-fired pizzas and pastas.
The Boston Globe reported today that proponents for allowing bars and restaurants to stay open later was dealt a setback today when the provision that would have allowed establishments to stay open until 4:00 AM was not included in the State’s budget.
Although the Mayor voiced support for the provision the Globe said the Mayor “did not strenuously lobby House lawmakers to agree” and without that support it appears local lawmakers who opposed the measure won the day. I do hope this is brought up again because I do believe later hours in parts of the city make a tremendous amount of sense and would add to the quality of life in Boston. You can read the Boston Globe article here.
Source: KOHN PEDERSEN FOX ASSOCIATES
This week The Boston Globe reported that developer Don Chiofaro is reviving his effort to build a pair of skyscrapers along Boston Harbor. His previous 2009 plan to develop this real estate had been blocked by Mayor Menino, but with a new Mayor in Boston it appears that Mr. Chiofaro has come back with a new plan proposing a 600′ complex that he says will “wow”.
Source: KOHN PEDERSEN FOX ASSOCIATES
The $1 billion project, that would redefine Boston’s skyline and waterfront still needs approval, includes about 1.3 million square feet of commercial and residential space; 700,000 square feet of offices, up to 300 hotel rooms, 120 luxury condominiums and three levels of stores and restaurants.
More about this story here.
Source: Greig Lamont (c) Project of Ruins
Did you know that Boston has its own phantom of the opera; 120 year old concert theater that is 40 feet below street level? This concert hall below the iconic Steinert & Sons storefront on Boylston Street has been closed for nearly three-quarters of a century.
The “acoustically perfect” theater built by Alexander Steinert seated 650 people. Apparently world-renowned pianists and opera singers performed here up through 1942 when nearly 500 died in Boston at the notorious Cocoanut Grove. Following that tragedy subterranean spaces like Steinert Hall became subject to strict fire regulations and was forced to close.
Read more about this fascinating space and check out The Boston Globe video, here.
Don’t miss this fun block party. The DJs are always excellent and the event is well run. The party started a few hours ago so the line may be long when you get there but Boston Pride does a good job at keeping the line moving so don’t be discouraged.
Sunday, June 15, 2014 from 12 noon – 8 pm
Back Bay on St. James Avenue
$15 with proceeds going to Boston Pride Committee
See you there.
Maybe it is time for everyone to curtail their road rage and ease up on the aggressive driving in Boston. According to a recent study based on information from TomTom GPS users, Boston has the 19th worst traffic in North America; falling behind cities like San Jose, and Tampa Bay.
No doubt, the Big Dig as well as efforts to encourage ridership on the MBTA and programs like our bike sharing Hubway have all contributed to reducing gridlock. The study doesn’t mean traffic in Boston at times can’t be maddening – it merely points out that we spend less time idling or barely moving during peak hours than 18 other cities in North America; not too shabby.
You can read more about the findings, including where your city ranks, here.
I love good design and interesting architecture and appreciate everything from the traditional Victorian bowfront row houses that dominate Boston’s South End to more modern design like M.I.T.’s Stata Center (shown above).
Recently Curbed Boston created a map of what they refer to as “Starchitecture”, featuring some of the areas most famous designs from award winning architects. I don’t agree with all the selections but if you like architecture, you may want to check this out.
BDCwire reported earlier today that Johnny Appleseed (Anheuser-Busch hard cider) plans to build the world’s largest ice luge in Boston’s Seaport District on Thursday, June 19th.
Johnny Appleseed event requires you to RSVP
The luge will be open for a promotional event starting at 7 PM on Thursday, June 19th. If you are interested in attending, you *must* RSVP through Johnny Appleseed’s website (you must be 21 years or older). The website also mentions a musical act will be performing at their event so stay tuned and check their website for more details: Johnny Appleseed. Thanks to Boston Hospitality and Tourism blog for the tip.
Starting today and running through June 15, Uber users can request a water taxi from BHC to navigate Boston Harbor. The temporary offering makes me wonder if this is a test or beta run for Uber. Pricing remains competitive with a fee of $10 per person for a one-way ride plus a $1 Uber booking fee; 20% gratuity is automatically added.
Service is available starting today and running through June 15; Monday through Saturday from 6:30 AM – 10 PM and Sunday from 6:30 AM – 8 PM. Sign up with the promo code UBERBOAT14 and your first two rides are FREE.
More details about UberBOAT! can be read here.
Boston Parks is launching their summer fitness series tomorrow in Post Office Square with classes Monday thru Thursday starting at 7:15 AM and in the evening at either 5:30 or 5:45 PM depending on the class. This year, bootcamp, yoga, Zumba, Pilates, and yoga barre will all be available. For more details check the Norma B Leventhal Park page, HERE.
Starting tomorrow evening free Bootcamp and Zumba classes in Christopher Columbus Park will be hosted 5:30 – 7:00 PM. Additional free fitness classes are available at places like Sterling’s Patio near Faneuil Hall, City Hall and The Rose Kennedy Greenway.
You can look into these and other free fitness classes around Boston by visiting the Boston Moves for Health Calendar as well as Boston Parks Summer Fitness page.
When Fritz closed earlier this year many locals bemoaned the loss of such a friendly, neighborhood bar. Recent years has seen a steady decline in operating gay bars here in Boston and only a handful remain. However, shortly after Fritz’s closing rumors started to fly that the staff was looking for a new space to reopen.
Since then,when they would open has been the topic of much discussion. If you are among the curious speculating when they might open, I would strongly recommend that you check out The Cathedral Station Facebook Page at 5PM.
Source: Christopher V. Sherman
Austin-based photographer Christopher Sherman posted this beautiful photograph of a recent sunset in Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood.
He has more photos from Boston and his travels on his gorgeous website, cvsherman.com and on his Google+ page.
Last week while I was reading local blog, We Love Beantown, I stumbled upon Boston Flummox. This online game asks you – How well do you know the Boston MBTA subway?
You have 60 seconds to unscramble as many MBTA subway stops as you can. It is a fun distraction if you’ve not tried it yet – check it out.
Not from Boston? The game also exists for the metro systems in Chicago, Toronto, San Francisco, London, Manchester, Perth and Sydney. Let me know how many stops you unscramble in 60-seconds.
Many may not know that American author and poet, Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston in the early 19th Century. Poe ranks as one of my favorite authors. I love his fictional character C. Auguste Dupin who was in The Murders of the Rue Morgue - considered the first detective fiction story written.
To recognize Poe, the city of Boston will install this beautiful statue from sculptor Stefanie Rocknak on October 5. The statue will stand in Poe Square at the intersection of Boylston Street and Charles Street South.