Following a competitive bidding process, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh on March 3 announced the selection of Boston Garden Development Corporation – a subsidiary of Delaware North – as the vendor that will work with the city to enhance Boston’s City Hall Plaza.
Boston Garden Development Corporation’s proposal calls for year-round programming of the plaza, including an ice skating path in winter months and a “beach” setup for the summer. The proposal also calls for separate activation of the different zones of the plaza, which would still accommodate all the city's previously scheduled events. Another aspect of the plan is the potential for an iconic observation Ferris wheel and a restaurant that would be run by Delaware North’s Patina Restaurant Group.
“I am confident that the City of Boston has a great partner in Boston Garden Development Corporation who will help us make the best use year-round of the space we have at City Hall Plaza,” Walsh said. “I thank all respondents for their thoughtful proposals and I look forward to the next steps as we reimagine the plaza as a thriving, healthy and innovative space.”
As the result of a Request for Proposals (RFP), which the city released in September 2015 and re-issued in February, the selection of Boston Garden Development Corporation marks the start of a three-year contract to improve City Hall Plaza. Boston Garden Development Corporation will have the opportunity to add new programming elements to complement existing activities on the plaza and add new temporary amenities.
“Mayor Walsh has a vision for revitalizing City Hall Plaza into a thriving, healthy and innovative civic space,” said CEO of Delaware North’s Boston Holdings Charlie Jacobs. “I am proud that the Boston Garden Development Corporation has been recognized for sharing the mayor’s vision and that we are fully committed to a significant investment that will transform City Hall Plaza into a year-round destination. We're looking forward to partnering with the city and exploring these proposed concepts, in collaboration with numerous local civic, arts and community organizations, to co-create and re-energize the plaza for the benefit of residents and visitors alike.”
The proposal represents a first step toward a vision for what City Hall Plaza can become, but it is not a binding contract that will determine what will appear on the plaza. The city will work with the Boston Garden Development Corporation to determine what is feasible over the next three years.