Boston humming as appeal of life in city booms


The century’s first decade has brought a historic surge of newcomers to the city, most settling downtown. They carry fresh expectations — and pose real challenges

By Casey Ross | The Boston Globe | March 3, 2013

Susan Mai’s Beacon Hill apartment is a postage stamp of a place. The kitchen isn’t much bigger than the bathroom, and entertaining friends is a bit like playing Frisbee in a phone booth.

But for all its drawbacks, Mai says she couldn’t be happier. She walks to work at a local publisher, eats out five times a week, and thinks of Boston Common as an ideal front yard.

“It hasn’t crossed my mind to ever want to leave the city,” said the 25-year-old Mai, who shares the 450-square-foot apartment with her boyfriend. “I’ve never thought of our place as too small. I really don’t need a big kitchen or a garden.”

Mai is among the thousands of young professionals whose devotion to urban living is causing Boston to grow at its fastest rate in decades. The influx has spawned a sweeping transformation of the city, with new residences and office buildings filling the skyline and reinventing commercial districts that once felt hopelessly time-worn. Read More

For some empty nesters, city living is just right

From The Boston Globe

By Jenifer B. McKim | The Boston Globe | August 19, 2012

Five years ago, Lois and Ray Siegelman decided to leave their spacious four-bedroom Colonial home in Concord to start anew in a three-bedroom Charlestown condo with stunning views of Boston Harbor.

In doing so, the Siegelmans gave up space for convenience, and suburban quiet and familiarity for adventure and city living. And now they have followers.

“People thought we were pioneers,’’ Ray Siegelman, 67, said of his friends and former neighbors from Concord. “Now there are a whole bunch of folks who have moved to Charlestown or the North End.”

And more to come, apparently. Linda and Dennis Chateauneuf followed the Siegelmans, moving into a two-bedroom in Charlestown last month from a 5,200-square-foot house in Concord. Now every time Chateauneufs see friends from Concord, Linda said, they get peppered with questions about the move. Read More

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