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Old 07-08-2017, 06:34 AM   #64
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,464
Re: Emergency Closure of Bridge to (Boston's) Long island

Originally Posted by JeffDowntown View Post
Unfortunately, not that simple. There are massive jurisdictional overlaps among bodies managing the harbor islands. It is not simply a National Park.

The Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area is managed by the Boston Harbor Islands Partnership: which includes:

United States National Park Service
United States Coast Guard
Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
Massachusetts Port Authority
Massachusetts Water Resources Authority
City of Boston
Boston Redevelopment Authority
Boston Harbor Island Alliance
Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center
The Trustees of Reservations

Lots of room for circular finger pointing.
Originally Posted by West View Post
This is a fair point, but it's not the case that all of those entities share equal responsibility for every island. The BHIP website has a breakdown of which entity has what:

For instance, the Coast Guard owns Little Brewster Island, and they handle the limited amount of visits there. I don't recall ever seeing anyone else having any authority over Little Brewster. So if anyone has a beef about how much access there is to Little Brewster, I don't think the USCG can point the finger at anyone else.

According to this site, the City of Boston is sole owner of Long Island, and that matches my recollection from other articles. So I think Long Island is the City's issue to deal with, though being an island means they get to interact with the USCG and US Army Corps of Engineers (at the very least) on any proposed alterations to navigational patterns and/or docking arrangement.

On other particular islands, your point gets more valid: DCR and City of Boston either co-own or co-manage Spectacle Island - this web site is internally contradictory on specifics - so there's plenty of wiggle room for a squabble.

On a more harbor-wide point of view, the huge array of entities makes your argument generally quite valid: it's a bureaucratic free for all, and I agree it's inherently prone to the multi-directional blame game. But when we're looking at any one island, I think we need to drill down to its specifics.
Thanks for the clarification. Sounds like a mess.
"You cannot take in a whole Boston street with a single glance of the eye and then lose your interest because you have thus taken the edge off future discovery; on the contrary, every step reveals some portion of a building which you could not see before, some change in your vista, and some suggestion of pleasant variety yet to come, which not only keeps your interest alive but heightens it and persuades you to go on."
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