Boston Mayor Thomas Menino says, “Boston is known for its innovation,” yet it seems that we are the city that is alway behind, always trying to catch up with other cities that seem to be evolving that much faster. (We were one of the last cities to get on the bandwagon of the bike sharing system and the last city to get food trucks). It seems that Boston is still stuck with the blue-law mentality: anything that might be modern and even fun has to be controlled at all times. (New innovations typically take awhile to get approval). We are a city of great potential, of creative and intelligent minds but it seems that we can only do so much. Everything is contained and what makes it all the more difficult, we have to be in bed by a certain time. New York City is the city that never sleeps and Boston is the city that always needs to get eight hours.
If you decide to go out in Boston, you have to keep in mind that the T stops running at 12:30 a.m. and cabs stop running at 2:00 a.m. There is a very limited number of 24-hour restaurants, fitness facilities, convenient stores, etc. (There is one fitness facility open 24-hours but is only open to women). City Hall seems to think that if anyone is doing something after hours, it must be bad. The “9-to-5 and only 9-to-5” mentality reigns supreme.
In terms of nightlife, bars usually have a cover charge and all of them close at 2:00 a.m. (Ned Devine’s in Faneuil Hall charges $10.00 and Club Royale in South Boston charges $15.00 to $20.00). The 2:00 a.m. shutdown is due to legislation, which was introduced in an attempt to reduce late-night noise, traffic accidents and violence. Alcohol sales typically stop 30 minutes prior to closing time.
Encouraging people into the city at night will support economic prosperity and will encourage businesses to develop and cater to customer needs. Boston is considered a global business center and having a 24-hour city would create more commercial activities that take place at times which relate to business hours in other parts of the world.
Boston attracts a vibrant mix of residents, visitors and businesses and evolving into a city that functions 24-hours a day, seven days a week, would drive growth in all of these areas. Regulations would of course have to be created for keeping noise and crime controlled, and by having the 24-hour cycle regulated, it would in turn promote a safe yet vibrant city as it transitions from day to night.
The future is looking bright and promising for Boston and by making a few changes here and there, we will one day become more of a global city, but for now, it looks like we will be tucked into our beds by 2:00 a.m.
By: Jonelle Flood (Marketing and Social Media intern for FBA)