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Beyond The Big Dig
About this project

What happens to the ribbon of land being created by the depression of the Central Artery may be the most important development decision to face Boston in a generation.

The history of the downtown corridor

The Central Artery is opened for traffic.

* 1972 to 1985
Concept of burying Central Artery is created and revived.

1986 to 1990
Many visions and plans put forward for the corridor.

  * 1987
Federal grant overcomes major financing hurdles.
  * 1987
Construction starts in Charlestown.

State Secretary of Environmental Affairs approves downtown construction -- if acceptable open space and development balance is created over the Big Dig.

  * 1991
"Boston 2000" plan by the BRA and Massachusetts Highway Department designates development or open space future for all parcels. BRA and the city create detailed zoning based on this plan, known as "Article 49."
  * 1991
State Secretary of Environmental Affairs accepts the Boston 2000 plan as open space criteria.

Construction starts for the Downtown Corridor.

  * 1995
The "Consensus Plan" is adopted by city and state to locate streets and sidewalks, defining final parcel boundaries.

The Legislature names the Corridor open spaces The Rose Kennedy Greenway.

  * 1997
The Massachusetts Turnpike Authority takes over responsibility for the Central Artery project from the Massachusetts Highway Department.

Process begins to select developers for parcels targeted for buildings.

  * 2000 to 2001
Master plan for final parcels is assembled by Turnpike Authority, with program ideas, design guidelines and principles.

New concepts advanced by the city and state to create a management entity for the Downtown Corridor.


2002 to 2003
Teams selected to design final parcels.

  * 2003 to 2004
The last parcels are to be designed.

2004 to 2005
The open parcels are completed. Construction of the buildings on other parcels continues until they, too, are finished.


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