By Mayor Martin J. Walsh
“We will listen. We will learn. We will lead.”
That is a promise that I made to Bostonians after being sworn in as the 54th mayor of the City of Boston. Now, almost four years later, we have put forth Boston’s first citywide plan in over 50 years — Imagine Boston 2030 — that will guide inclusive and long-term growth for our city’s future to boost quality of life, equity and resilience in every neighborhood in Boston.
Imagine Boston 2030 builds on our strengths and shares them more widely. This plan is about lifting people up, embracing our diversity and connecting people to good jobs. It’s about expanding opportunities to every corner of our city — and making sure everyone benefits from our success.
Boston is at a unique point in our history. Our population is growing, and we are expected to exceed 700,000 residents before 2030. We’ve been growing twice as fast as the rest of the nation, and we are more diverse than ever. The world’s leading employers and innovators are flocking here. We have so many positive attributions and assets, and our future is bright. To ensure our bright future helps everyone, we have to plan. That’s where Imagine Boston 2030 comes in. Through this plan, we’ll listen, learn and lead Boston to continued success.
We will listen.
This plan is the result of 26 months of listening to residents who engaged in our workshops, left feedback in suggestion boxes, attended our “Forums on the Future” events and contributed to our online engagement tools.
It has been shaped by over 15,000 voices who offered their input and contributed to our citywide plan. One Roslindale resident told us that they’d like to see “housing density close to public transit and near walkable main streets.” That’s exactly the future we see for Boston.
We will learn.
Through the engagement process, we learned what Boston residents consider to be the biggest opportunities and challenges for our future, which guided us to establish five action areas, which include: (1) enhancing our neighborhoods by strengthening the neighborhood services and connectivity, and investing in the public realm; (2) encouraging a mixed-use core that encourages a dense, walkable core in our job centers where more people live, work and gather; (3) expanding neighborhoods in key areas to guide new housing and commercial growth; (4) creating a waterfront for all Bostonians by activating open spaces, connecting neighborhoods to the waterfront, and investing in proactive climate planning and infrastructure; (5) expanding access to opportunity in the neighborhoods along the Fairmount Corridor through coordinated investments in transportation, neighborhood vibrancy and education.
We believe in the power of this plan to change our city for the better. Since we launched Imagine Boston 2030, we have never stopped listening and putting those ideas into action. This plan represents a living document that will evolve as our city evolves.
We will lead.
Our work is far from being done, but we are already well underway. We have aligned Imagine Boston with our city’s Capital Plan, so we can continue to implement projects.
Citywide, we are creating strategies to ensure that Bostonians have stable housing, support our neighborhoods with transit and green spaces, make our communities healthy and walkable, support our small businesses, and ensure our waterfront is resilient and accessible for all.
Please take a moment to view the plan at imagine.boston.gov. I look forward to building Boston’s future with you.
Martin Walsh is Mayor of Boston.