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Boston in 2017

Boston in 2017: There's a lot to look forward to, but according to nearly everyone who responded, a lot that needs to be done. Many readers were also upset by a phrase that appeared in our interview with author Rose Lewis - but she isn't at fault.

The package "Boston 2017" (May 27) made much of a billion dollars on arts, a billion on biotech, and ambitious new bus lines, but it didn't have one mention of whether anyone will be able to afford to live in Boston in 10 years. Even in the midst of a housing slump, rent and real estate prices are driving away young families, artists, entrepreneurs, and middle-income workers. What are the visionaries of today doing to solve that problem?

Harvard's new interest in the Urban Ring ("A Wheel for Our Spokes," May 27) is encouraging, but the proposed "life sciences corridor" between Longwood and Cambridge will hardly improve connectivity if it is modeled on the Silver Line. The T Riders Union clocks the average morning rush-hour speed on the Silver Line bus at an agonizing 7.3 miles per hour. It is no surprise that the Silver Line itself was left off your predictive 2017 transit map, as it should be. The bus transit aspect of the Urban Ring proposal should share that same fate.

One topic missing was water transportation. You can now hop a ferry from Salem into Boston, but there should be ferries shuttling to Boston from all around the North and South shores. If individual cities can't foot the bill or don't have sufficient individual ridership, there could be a consortium of neighboring cities. Surely a modest network could be in place by 2017.

What a wonderfully imaginative story about how Boston will look in 10 years. But aren't you forgetting one thing? How will global warming change the face of Boston? According to a study completed in 2005, in the coming century, downtown Boston can expect flooding during storms that will reach into the Back Bay and Harvard Square. What will the Big Dig look like then?

As an adoptive mom of two children, I was shocked and saddened to see Rose Lewis refer to her daughter's family in China as her "real parents" ("First Person," May 27). Does this mean that Ms. Lewis is "unreal"? Every informed and caring adoptive family knows the importance of using appropriate language, such as "birth parent" or "birth family," just to name a couple.

Editor's note: Unfortunately, the correction that ran in the paper last month was missed by some. Rose Lewis's interview was incorrectly transcribed by the writer. Lewis did not use the phrases "real parents" or "real family."