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How narrow are your streets?

2015 March 4
tags: , , ,
by Keith E. Jacobson

I saw these two school buses trying to squeeze past each other on Mill Street last week. Do the snow piles and cars parked on streets, that are narrowed by the all snow, compromise public safety?

Two school buses try to pass each other on Mill Street.

Two school buses try to pass each other on Mill Street.

Leaf blowers ban in Newton: Discuss

2015 March 3
by Greg Reibman

Alders Norton and Hess-Mahan tell the TAB they’re seeking public input on the topic and drafting language for a proposal later this year.

For those who forget what leaves are (and after this winter that’s possible) here’s a video TAB editor Andy Levin shot last year


So go ahead public, provide some input…

A walk down Newton’s memory lane

2015 March 3
by Jerry Reilly

Here’s a slide show of Newton from days of yore complete with a Blind Faith retro soundtrack.

It was all before my time here but I still loved seeing all the period details.

Newton trivia question – What’s that promotional photo of 1970’s TV show Starsky & Hutch doing in this Newton nostalgia compilation?

Answer: Paul Michael Glasier, TV’s Detective David Starsky came from Newton and his parents lived off Jackson St  (Thanks Alison)

Open thread: Austin St. project community meeting

2015 March 2
by Gail Spector

Newtonville resident Jack Prior shared his summary, with some photos, from yesterday’s community meeting about the Austin Street project. He covers some good material here, and I’m wondering if anybody else who attended has anything to add.

I was very taken aback to learn that the photo below (lifted from Prior’s site) was on display, given that it was taken on Christmas morning. What possible purpose was there is displaying that photo? What possible purpose was there in taking that photo?

austin st

Craft Beer Cellar finds a home in Newtonville

2015 March 2
by Greg Reibman

Remember when Craft Beer Cellar abruptly closed its Newton Centre store this past New Year’s Eve?

Well according to the their website, they will be reopening in the middle of March at 14 Austin Street (near Starbucks) in Newtonville.

Live theater comes to Waban, Lower Falls, and Upper Falls

2015 March 1
by Jerry Reilly

HomePageGraphicThe Newton Nomadic Theater’s five week run of “The Turn of the Screw”, an eerie, powerful, classic ghost story, is coming to a close.

This weekend’s shows were all out of town, with two fabulous performances in a barn in Sudbury and tonight with an enthusiastic full house at the Brendan Behan Pub in Jamaica Plain.  The next two weeks we’ll be back in Newton for the final four performances. read more…

Mr. Sid’s Ira Segel dies at 78

2015 March 1
by Greg Reibman

Ira Segel, co-founder and longtime operator of the Mr. Sid’s men’s clothing store in Newton Centre, died Sunday at the age of 78,  the trade magazine Womens Wear Daily reports. The full story is behind a paybwall and I haven’t seen any other updates yet. More to come.

Answering Austin Street parking questions

2015 February 28
by Julia Malakie

Harding mechanical parking lift

It’s not online yet, but Newtonville resident Peter Bruce’s op-ed column in this week’s February 25 Tab (page B3), has some interesting statistics on seasonal parking at the Austin Street lot. In addition to receiving data back to 2012 from the Planning department through a documents request, Bruce has been doing his own counting of not just parked cars, but also of snow-covered (unusable) spaces and illegally parked cars. From the article [typing by hand here, so apologies for any typos]:

Unlike winter, however [referring to increases in summer and fall parking demand from 2012 to 2013], they will not face the problem of snow mounds shrinking parking capacity and forcing occupancy rates above 100 percent. How is that possible? Well, on recent Saturdays, snow mounds have covered eight or nine spaces in the ASL and more than 20 spaces on the right side of the Shaw’s lot. On Feb. 17, they covered 20 spaces in the ASL. Already such overcapacity has led to four to eight cars parking “illegally” in the six “tow zone” spots in regular parking rows, and outside formal spaces. As a result of high demand, reduced capacity and illegal parking, so far this winter, peak-time occupancy in the ASL has averaged 99 percent on Saturdays.

He also notes that part of ASP developer Scott Oran’s valet parking plan to expedite parking and create more spaces would be the use of mechanical lift double-stackers (illustration above).

What do you think? Would you use them? Would you even use the valets? I’m always reluctant to hand my car over to a stranger, making a mental list of what’s in the car, whether information or valuables. Then there’s not knowing how long it will take to get my car back if there’s a wait.

Perhaps there will be more information at tomorrow’s final (really, “final”?) community meeting on Austin Street, Sunday, March 1, 1-3pm at the Newton North High School cafeteria.

It seems almost unfair to bring up climate change when Josh is not able to respond, but I have to say, while this year’s snowfall may be extreme, I don’t think we should assume it’s an aberration. I think extremes of snow, rainfall, heat, cold will become more common and should be factored into decision making. “100 year storms” seem to be coming every five years or so.

Jen Price to the rescue!

2015 February 27
by Greg Reibman

Remember the story about how the Newton North debate team kept getting in trouble wasn’t able to hold onto a faculty adviser?

Well the Newtonite reports that they found one.

“I am going to be their adviser,” said principal Jennifer Price. “I have never been an adviser in my entire career at North.”



Can you recommend a good Newton restaurant?

2015 February 27
by Greg Reibman

This year’s unprecedented winter weather has been hard on all of us, including our restaurants and their employees.  With temps expected to soar in the 30s over the next few days (SPF 30 at least!), now’s a great time to give yourself a break from cooking and get out there and eat.

And here’s your chance to put in a plug for your favorite(s) Newton restaurant(s) here.

Traffic ‘debacle’ at Wells Ave.

2015 February 26
by Village 14

From NECN Wednesday

Where Newton ranks statewide on SAT scores

2015 February 25
by Greg Reibman

The Boston Business Journal has the comparative data.

Newton SATs
Tests taken 822
Cumulative SAT score 1,785
Statewide rank 12
Reading – average score 588
Statewide rank 17
Writing – average score 589
Statewide rank 15
Math – average score 608
Statewide rank 14