Photographs by Ken Richardson AIRBNB, LIKE THE draw of ride-hailing apps to car owners, started with the premise that your home can make you a little extra money by renting out rooms to travelers looking to save a few dollars. Empty-nesters, they said, could rent out junior’s bedroom now that he’s moved out and put(...)
Phony host names on rental site mislead as to who the owner is
THIS STORY IS A SIDEBAR TO THE MAIN STORY: THE AIRBNB GOLD RUSH IS ON. ANTHONY WAS A popular Airbnb host. His 88 units in Boston, including about half in the North End, drew more than 2,000 mostly positive reviews over a 15-month period. “We had a fantastic stay in Anthony’s place,” wrote Carol from(...)
Transit ridership is declining as ride-hailing apps gain steam
Illustration by Peter Horjus ONCE A MONTH, the MBTA’s Laurel Paget-Seekins jumps on a conference call with her counterparts at half a dozen transit agencies in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, New York City, and Washington, DC. They are all worried about the same thing. Why are fewer people boarding their buses and trains(...)
The state's landmark ed reform bill turns 25 this year. It launched Mass. to the top of the class -- but has not been the 'great equalizer' some hoped for.
Illustration by Kyle Webster THIS YEAR MARKS a significant milestone in the state’s rich history of leadership in education. It was 25 years ago that Massachusetts officials came together to pass the landmark Education Reform Act of 1993. With a huge infusion of new funding, much of it directed at districts educating lots of students(...)
Pent-up demand is finally being realized in state’s second-largest city
PHOTOGRAPHS BY MARK MORELLI A correction was added to this story. MARS IS THE LIMIT for robotics engineer Kevin Harrington. Harrington, 32, wants to build a machine that would harvest the sun, soil, and atmosphere of the Red Planet to produce food, building supplies, and robots for human colonies in the future. “Let’s say we(...)
Yvonne Spicer says she’s undaunted by new challenges—a good trait for the first person to serve as mayor of Framingham.
Photographs by Frank Curran YVONNE SPICER, like a lot of her fellow Framingham residents, freely admits that she voted against the charter question to make the state’s biggest town a mid-sized city. But once the measure passed by the thinnest of margins, the former teacher and vice president of the Museum of Science did what(...)
Is legal marijuana a blight or boon?
Photographs by Michael Manning THE PRESIDENT OF THE LAWRENCE CITY COUNCIL had already issued a stern warning against booing. City resident Steven Gil was at the podium, struggling mightily to make the case at the hearing in early October that allowing marijuana businesses in the city would be a good thing. “Please don’t shut the(...)
Michael Botticelli’s personal experience informs his approach at BMC’s Grayken Center
You’ve shaped drug policy at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, at the White House, and now as executive director of the Grayken Center at Boston Medical Center. But it seems like the most important item on your resume is the fact that you’re in recovery from substance abuse yourself. That’s not an uncommon trajectory.(...)
Evacuees face language, culture, economic barriers
ON A CRISP morning in November, Veronica Perez and Limarie Rivera, both self-evacuees from Puerto Rico, borrow a car from Rivera’s cousin and make their way to the New North Citizens’ Council in Springfield. New North is one of nearly two dozen welcome centers around the state designated as a first stop for people coming(...)
Wellspring gives workers in Springfield opportunity to be owners
WELLSPRING COOPERATIVE IS PREPARING to launch its third business in Springfield, a greenhouse that will grow fresh greens and herbs and sell them to supermarkets and institutions in the area. The greenhouse, built on a brownfield in the eastern part of the city, will use hydroponic gardening (think plants growing in mineral nutrient solutions rather(...)