What do you care about most?
As a public greenspace, Franklin Park is owned and managed by the Boston Parks Department. FPC works with city officials, park institutions like the Zoo and the Shattuck Hospital, event organizers, and park user groups to encourage procedures and policies that will support passive and active use while mediating problems for the park landscape and broader community.
Special events like the fall cross country season, the summer cultural festivals, and various road races or fundraising walks can overwhelm everyday park users who are suddenly faced with hordes of people on what is usually a quiet, woodland path. Cars and buses fill the park for some of these events. Neighborhood residents must cope with noise and traffic volume not meant for the small streets around the park.
Yet, for a family coming to the Dominican Festival or a high school cross country star, Franklin Park is synonymous with their culture, their identity, and oft-remembered good times.
Overwhelmed by a lack of resources and many acres, the Boston Parks Department keeps the grass mowed and the trash barrels emptied. What else is needed? Everyday park users are urged to report maintenance needs to the Park Line: 617-635-PARK or by submitting an online report.
Did you know there are nearly ten different public safety agencies that have jurisdiction in Franklin Park? It may be one of the safest parks in Boston, but we need the presence of Park Rangers and police to help people feel safe. Eyes on the Park offers a list of phone numbers you can call if you witness problems.
As environmental advocates, the Franklin Park Coalition works for better public transit, fewer cars, and more pedestrian park use. What changes are possible? A transportation study has recently been completed that offers data and recommendations to help us work for pedestrian-friendly improvements.
How are the myriad groups and events in Franklin Park, from Fall Cross Country to Summer Festivals to baseball leagues, managed? The Boston Parks Department requires that all large athletic and special events complete a permit application in order to determine if the activity is appropriate for the park and will not conflict with other events on any given day.
Every year the Mayor and City Council develop and vote on a capital budget for Boston that includes expenditures for parks. In Franklin Park 2012 capital funds were allocated for path and entrance repairs, with the hope that this is a first installment in an effort to upgrade crumbling paths and make entrances more accessible.
FPC has advocated for a comprehensive park management plan for nearly two decades. A management plan would outline maintenance practices, policies for permitting for large events and activities, transportation and parking solutions, and long-term preservation of the park’s 200 acres of woodlands. You can read some of the early management documents and more recent drafts created for Franklin Park management:
2002 Draft Management Plan by ICON consultants
2005 Management Plan Draft developed by the Boston Parks Department