Neighbors for Neighbors

Do stuff with and for your neighbors

I just got this email sent out by Curtis Stillman (proprietor of the lovely Stillman's farm and the twice weekly JP Farmers Market). Apparently, Bank of America is being a VERY bad neighbor and towing people who either park in the lot while at the market or those who both use the bank and the market. Please read the email and maybe there is something the group can do like put some pressure on BOA that they need to be accepting to the community and be good, not bad neighbors. Perhaps send them some strongly worded letters and emails. If you are a customer of the bank, please express your discontent! The JP Farmers Market is something precious and exceptionally special!!!!

From Curtis Stillman:

Bank of America is towing with a vengeance - be careful!

It was only a year and a half ago that Bank Of America informed us we could no longer use the parking lot for the farmer's market that has been there for over 11 years. Swift action from the community saved the day. We would like to alert you to another situation that seems to be escalating. We are cautioning everyone to be very careful.

All summer our customers have been under the constant threat that their cars could be towed - which we understand (to a point). Parking is a big issue in the city, we get it. Subsequently, the parking lot was almost empty on many occasions this summer. Today there is a man who stands in the parking lot, writing down license plate numbers and telling people when they come out of the bank, they cannot shop at the market.

Thankfully, we have not been asked to relocate, but the current situation seems ominous.. Of course, we do not want to cause any inconvenience for patrons of the bank - we know what a nightmare parking can be, but we are concerned for the market patrons, who may also be attempting to take care of their banking. Please be aware of the situation and if you have any thoughts, we would welcome your email. Again, we are thankful to be accommodated in the parking lot, but we are concerned about the future of the market, as well as the unfriendly approach of towing mutual customers. I do not know if Steve Poole is still the bank manager, but I suspect the bank is only responding to negative comments about the market or market shoppers...perhaps if they hear some positive comments, the farmers' market can return to a low-key community activity.

Bank of America
677 Centre Street
(617) 522-4800

Be well,

Glenn & Genevieve Stillman

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Comment by Claudia Dunne on November 22, 2010 at 10:12pm
It would be great if you/we could post a link to BOA so that we can email them. BOA tried to do this when they first moved into the community and through public complaint boa backed off. Lots of people use the parking lot when in jp center.
Comment by Mary Hannon on November 20, 2010 at 8:52pm
on another note. I think there are other places that would work and people would get use to the shift in location. Like the Loring-greenough house. the plans for the Monument area are exciting and controversial but if it creates less of an island with more usable community space it may be perfect (way in the future). What's sad is that BOA contributes 25k toward JPCentreSouth main streets for our events and yet they decided to tow the community out of their lot.
Comment by Mary Hannon on November 20, 2010 at 8:44pm
I think that BOA is just horrible with their behavior. I've pulled my accounts. Here's what i think might be a solution: they should consider meters. If the parking spaces created revenue they may be interested in letting people use the lot. I've lived in JP for 25 years and that parking lot was always been a useful lot to have and use without a problem until the last year. I'm sure that people would be willing to pop $1. in the meter and do their shopping. It would be a win-win.
Comment by Edward W Wagner on November 19, 2010 at 4:55pm
I think that CSA shoppers and Mr. Stillman have something else they should worry about much more. It's called Senate Bill 510:
First they came for our doctors, then the came for our food.
Comment by Julia Mathis on November 19, 2010 at 9:21am
Thank you for posting this. I have been using the BofA parking lot for the farmers market so I am saddened to hear that BofA is not being neighborly. I can see their point during the week, I don't see the problem with parking there on Saturday. I guess I'll have to now park at the parking lot behind Costellos.
However, I think the BofA location is too hidden anyway. It would benefit the farmer's marker to be in a more visible location with more foot traffic. Maybe in front of the Loring-Greenough House and the Library?
Comment by Quinn on November 16, 2010 at 7:42pm
I love Stillman's, am a loyal CSA member and always get my Thanksgiving turkeys from them. But I loathe that BofA location (and BofA in general). I hope we can relocate to a public park or something. I don't know if there are regulations against selling things in spaces like Franklin Park or the Southwest Corridor parks. But that would be so much better.

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