BOSTON (CBS) – Opponents to Starbucks’ plan to build at the entryway of Boston’s North End believe they have won a battle, but not the war. Mayor Marty Walsh Friday encouraged the coffee giant to withdraw its proposal for the store at Hanover and Cross Streets.
In a statement, Mayor Walsh said: “After hearing the concerns from residents about sustaining the culture and historic nature of the North End, I encouraged the applicant to withdraw the proposal to locate a Starbucks at the entrance to the North End. Our community process works best when we communicate effectively and work together.”
North End neighbors are now breathing a sigh of relief.
“Corporate America is not going to bully us,” said restaurant owner Damien DiPaolo. “Hopefully after this stance all the neighborhoods in Boston when they think something is wrong and not moral, they need to protect small business, they will stand up.”
For more than two and a half hours last week, North End neighbors told Starbucks they’re not welcome. Sounds like the plan is not popular with visitors to the area, either.
“I feel good supporting people who have probably been doing this for generations. I want to help them,” said Kim Duderstadt who is visiting from Florida.
Starbucks had initially stated they believed, “independent stores and small chains can continue to grow and thrive along with (them).”
There are more than 10 Starbucks within a half mile of the proposed store.
“I like the local areas. Quaint little shops and restaurants. That’s what makes this area what it is. It’s why we came back,” said Bruce Duderstadt.
Neither Starbucks nor Charter Realty, which owns the property, has responded to whether they will change direction.
This proposal was set to go before two neighborhood groups on July 9 and 12. Opponents to the Starbucks plan will still attend those in case this isn’t over just yet.