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Boston Public Library 

Task Force Report 


Mark Fortune, Chief Consulta/ 
June, 1961 / 

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Boston Community Development 

Task Force Report 


Mark Fortune, Chief Consultant 
June, 1961 


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An aspect of total community development 

I) Foreword 2 

1) A New Approach Needed 2 

2) I'Vhat Constitutes a Plan 1). 

3) Relationship to Urban Renewal and 

Citizen Participation 6 

II ) Stap;es of Planning 7 

1) Fact-Pinding 8 

2) Goal-Setting 

3) Proposals 


II I ) Further Considerations 2l|. 

1) Additional Aspects of District Planning 21). 

2) Operations at City Level 26 

3) Staff 29 
k) Carrying Out Plans 32 
5) Continuity 35 

IV) Supplementary Report 36 

The Social Profile as Part of a District 
Plan; by Dr, Irwin Sanders, Dean of the 
School of Anthropology and Sociology, 
Boston University, 

V ) Task Force Committee on District Community [|.2 
Development Programs 

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an aspect of total community development 


1) A New Approach Needed 

Fifty-two thousand people,,. one of the most 
densely populated areas in the country, . .high population 
mobility, , .growing numbers of newly-arrived Negroes 
and Puerto Ricans ,, .eight thousand old people, many 
sick and alone in cold-water flats ., .highest tuber- 
culosis rate in the nation, . .alcoholism, juvenile 
delinquency, crime, prostitution in generous pro- 
portions... a notorious skid row, .,18,000 arrests 
a year, making the police station one of the busiest 
in the country. 

These are the facts about the South End of 
Boston in 1961. This is not a new situation. As long 
ago as 1899, a pioneer social worker Robert Woods 
termed the South End "a city wilderness". In the 
intervening two-thirds of a century, untold resources 
of money and skill have gone into efforts to improve 
conditions. Today scores of social agencies are at 
work: settlement houses, major hospitals, churches, 
many other health, charitable and recreational organi- 

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Nevertheless, acute human needs remain; perhaps 
they are growing. The South End is indeed an urban 
"island of poverty" in our society of wealth. 

With this enduring pattern, the South 'Pnd is 
one of the areas of Boston that will be affected by the 
moat ambitious urban renewal program in the country. 
Large areas of deteriorated and substandard housing, a 
physical manifestation of social blight, are slated 
for clearance or rehabilitation. Will these new or 
remodeled buildings meet the real needs of the South 
End? When the plans for physical face-lifting are 
accomplished will the same collection of human 
problems remain? VJhat steps should be taken to 
make it otherwise? 

No one today has the responsibility to think out 
this problem, Althoup-h many are dedicated to the South 
End, each of the myriad organizations is busy about 
its own partial iob. No one is developing a total 
apToroach to the human situation comparable to the total 
approach to the physical environment made by urban 

The South End is a dramatic example of the need for 
a new approach to the human aspects of city living if 
the great challenge of urban renewal is to be met. 

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As a new approach, we propose that a social plan 
be made to meet the human needs in each of the dis- 
tricts of Boston. 'Je use the South ^'^nd as a con- 
venient example because information is readily 
available and because of the more dramatic nature of 
the problem. The planning method described for the 
South End is applicable to each District. 
2) What Constitutes A Plan? 

A District Social Plan is a set of proposals 
designed to guide the short term decisions and long 
range goals of public and private institutions which 
will serve the present and future residents of a 
district. The proposals are of three types: 

a. Proposals which set forth social objectives 
for the physical planning of a district 

Examples: Recommended population density 

Type and rental range for housing 
Recommended employment opportunities 
The recommended social fxonctions 
the district should perform for 
t'-e city (such as a stable resi- 
dential area for those who work 
dovmtown. ♦ ,a port of entry for 
in— migrants , with decent housing 
for transient men,., an area where 
one or more ethnic groups choose 
to live, with their own cultural 
institutioRS ) Etc. 

b. Physical facilities which should be part of 
the physical plan 

Examples : Open space for parks and recreation 
Settlement houses and community 


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c. Services which should be incorporated Into 

the planning of agencies serving the district 

These would be proposals for short-term and 

long-range improvements in the type, quality, 

quantity and coordination of programs. 

Examples: Relocation services 
Health services 

Religious and cultural services 
Family Co\mselling 

Programs for older adults 

The district social plan provides operating and plan- 
ning agencies with guides for their decisions both during 
and after urban renewal. It must reflect human need and 
aspiration. It must also be workable vrithln realistic 
limits and possibilities. 

The value and effectiveness of a rilan requires that it 
be the product of the combined efforts of citizens , repre- 
sentatives of agencies including planning bodies such as 
the Boston Redevelopment Authority and United Community 
Services of Metropolitan Boston, and planning personnel 
provided, under this proposal, by ABGD. 

To justify the term "plan", the proposals cannot be 
simply casual recommendations, but must be based on thorough 
knowledge of the District and its probable future. The 
plan must embody short-range steps set in the framework of 
long-range goals and, it must provide a practical strategy 
for moving from goals to implementation. 

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It must be kept In mind that nlanning is not new. 
It is vital to many organizations. The Armed Forces 
must plan on a vast scale. Business organizations 
plan ahead in order t o meet economic competition. 
Governments in most of the world carry on long-range 
planning for economic development. City planning is 
now Q commonplace means of guiding urban growth in 
Boston and other places. Planning to meet human need 
will give the social dimension its proper emphasis. 

3) Relationship to Urban Renewal and Citizen Participation 
A plan can be made in any district, regardless 
of w hat sta^-e it is in with respect to urban renewal 
planning. This applies as well to General ImT3rove- 
ment Area such as Dorechester, In dist^^icts where urban 
renewal planning is well advanced, it may not be able 
to contribute to the initial proiects, but it should 
be valuable for later projects and cpsrtainly for 
carrying out relocation, rehabilitation and conservation. 
In districts with a lower priority in Boston's renewal 
program, the making of a s ocial plan sho'^ld be 
a partner from the very beginning of planning. 

Plans should be made ini th a high degree of citizen 
participation and should embody "grass roots" ideas. 
It is of equal importance that there be narticipation 
from those nublic and private agencies that have a stake 

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in the human welfare of a district. Without citizen 
and agency participation in the formulation of plans, 
the plans will not be sound, nor i>rill tbey have support 
for their implementation. In order to concentrate on 
the planning process itself, discussion of these consid- 
erations is deferred to the end of this report, 


Because of the comDlexity of urban life, plans that give 
the right answers cannot be made easily and quickly, TCach 
neighborhood, each District, is different. We need to 
identify and sort out many factors in a variety of sit- 
uations and to see their relationships and meaninpc. 
Consequently we propose an orderly planning process which 
can be used in different situations. This process is se- 
parated into three stages. These run parallel to similar 
steps in the physical lolanning t)rocess and at each stage 
the two kinds of planning- -physical and social — feed 
each other information and ideas 1±iat will help to bring 
about a consistent and integrated plan for the district. 

The findings of each stage are set forth in reports. 
The stages and their descriptive reports are as follows: 

Stage 1) Fact-Find ing 

a) The Social Profile 

b) The Inventory of Needs and Resources 

Stage 2) Goal-Setting 

a) The Statement of Social Objectives 

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stage 3) Proposals 

a) Long-range Plan for Social Services and 


b) Snort-range Plan for Services in Carrying 

out Relocation Projects 

c) Short-ranre Flan for Services in Carrying 

out Rehabilitation and Conservation 

These reports may be considered as guideposts pointing 

the way toward what needs to be done and how to go about 


As an example of how it might work, let us assume 

that this planning process is carried out in the South 

End. A District Planning Specialist, a staff member of 

ABCD, assigned to the .'^outh End, is responsible to the 

ABCD District Director for the development of tte social 


1) Fact-Finding 

a) THE SOCIAL PROFILE: The first job to be done 

is to get a good idea of what makes the South 

End tick. While there are many people with 

excellent personal knowledn-e of the South End, 

there is no. one place where such knowledge 

has been put down in a comprehensive and 

scientific fashion. 

The Social Profile fills this need. 

Developed by Dr. Irwin Sanders, Dean of the 

School of Anthropology and Sociology of Boston 

University, it provides a quick and tested 


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method of getting information without elaborate 
and time-cons uminp social science resesrch, 
fhe social profile is designed to un- 
cover and describe the network of social 
relationships at different levels of the 
district. For example, it undertakes to 
gain knowledge about 

1. The leadership structure 

2. The Organizational pattern 

3« '^e feeling of identification people 
have for the local unit being 
I).. How local issues arise and are met 
5« The interrelationships of the local 
area (District-Neighborhood) with the 
larger community of which it is a part. 

The Supplementary Report, prepared by 
Dr. Sanders, describes in more detail the 
social profile and the alternate ways in which 
it might be made. This first guidepost will 
provide ABCD, the Boston Redevelopment Author- 
ity, and other agencies with a bird's eye 
view of District social structure and d ynamics 
that is not no^^; easily obtained. 
secord part of the fact-finding stage is 
The Inventory of Needs and Resources , which 
ia divided into two parts, 'Tie first deals with 
existing social conditions, with an eye tovdiat 
might be changed for the better, Basic in- 
formation about the size and characteristics 


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of the population would be included, e.g. 
ethnic and racial composition and age distri- 
bution. Indices of ill-health and social 
problems would form an important part of the 
inventory. These would include, for example, 
tubercnlosis rptes, infant mortality rates, 
rates of ap^^e." ranees and committments of 
juvenile delinquents, number of public 
welfare recipients amd families receiving 
Aid to Dependent Children. 

The inventory is loaded with value 
judgements. There must be sensitivity to 
the many cultural value systems that may be 
involved, and cfsution to avoid imposing 
inappropriate standards. Determination of 
how this analysis should be made will involve 
guidance of behavioral science skills and 
consultation of experts from specialized 
fields of service, such as public health, 
mental health, and education, to mention a 

We can suggest, however, some possible 
areas of analysis. 'T'he needs of various 
segments of the population could be considered 
in terms of those services and facilities 
generally recocrnized as providing a basic 


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"floor" to which all are entitled. Where 
standards are missing, the best prevailing 
professional judgment will have to be 
relied upon. 

In the South End, S) eclal groups of the 
disadvantaged and the handicapped will call 
for special attention. These include 
newcomers --Negroes and Puerto Ricans--who 
face problems such as cultural ad^ tation, 
education, vocational training, and dis- 
crimination. They Include many youths who 
are handicapped by family and educational 
shortcomings • The aging have a gamut of 
needs — financial, heali"h, housing, leisure- 
time. There are groups whose actions society 
does not approve-- juvenile delinquents, 
alcoholics and criminals. 

The problem approach, however, should not 
be stressed exclusively. It is important to 
seek insight into unrealized strengths. The 
concept of promoting growth should be emphasized. 
It is important to seek insight into latent and 
potential strengths. Latent potentials for 
cultural expression, civic participation, and 
creative achievement are important. 

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Information could flow from various sources. 
Professionals will have cohtributions on stan- 
dards. The ideas of district residents, evoked 
throu'^h a community organization program, 
will be imtDortPnt, '^11 available statis- 
tics should be used and new coniDilai-ions or 
samnle surveys may be necessary. 

The second part of The Inventory of Weeds 
and Resources spells out what services and 
facilities for people are available, and what 
jobs they are doing. The inventory should 
analyze the present cost of services that are 
being provided in a district. 

The South End, for instance, has many 
social service resources. The United South 
End Settlements, the South End Boys* Club, 
the Ellis ?'!emorial--all concentrate their 
activities here. There are branches of City- 
wide agencies : the Morgan Memorial, the 
Salvation Army, the YVJCA, and the YMCA. 
There are also municipal recreation centers, 
ten public schools, a number of churches, 
and three parochial schools, '^ere are special 
services, such as the Feighborhood Newcomers 
Program, the Center for Spanish-speaking 
People, the South End Family Prcram, and the 

.3eoiuo?. ^ucl-^BV fnoT:! vfoll biuoo nci-'Gmiolnl 

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'io snol"' •sXicf'^oo wen bne bo si; -'cf bl^'oria 5f>l:t 

SIC d^Bii^ 330v:-r'ie-3 fo iBoo j-n3f!0Tfc odd' os".r;:;n.G 

, j'^j:'-;j-.»lb 'k ill. i:;oOxvo^;T Svnl/d 

'xi5^':j erhoi- cartoon 00 XXfi--lp,-I-''£o.f.70''i sXIXrf.' srW 

orit ' t.i.j:;ia;iiKO" xjijgio-- ario : E-'ion&^y^ 

J J. '.i. vv 

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Community Service Center, There are three 
hospitals; the Boston City Hospital, the 
Massachusetts Memorial Hospital, and the 
New England Medical Center, In addition there 
are the City Health and vrelfare Departments, 
and a public housing project of the Boston 
Housing Authority, City-wide UCS service, 
such as the Boston Family Society, serve 
the District, Voluntary associations, as well, 
should be considered as resources, such as 
SENRAC and the South End Businessmen's 
Association, Understanding of the objectives, 
organization, programs, and facilities of 
these and other groups provides the factual 
background for proposals for cooperative 
action and provision of new services. 

This inventory could be carried out in 
alternate ways. It might be made by the 
Planning Specialist with the involvement of 
the various services. Another possibility 
Is for it to be made under contract by another 
group, such as UCS, 

The important contribution of The 
Inventory of Needs and Resources is that the 
various determinations of need are weighed 
against the available resources in an organized 
and comprehensive statement. Light should be 
thrown on the relative importance of needs, on 

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nl -i-'/o 'joxi'-ic-o eri blijoo Y'''-<'''*^evT.tx zi'JT 

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o no lii^jjcfxi "in 00 :fnj?.-J'2oq/r'i; eriT 
rrf J .•ff-'rj 3.?; seo'xpp^en hnB ^p^^^^o 'mo^Ci.ovn± 
r ':' "'"'CB ■• lo t'v'A:fp,nlt^<xe:foh .cx;oi:'2:^v 

"3T0 no nl 39att.ros3^' aCrffJx.cvfi Oi .; 

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relationships, and on gaps in service. Addition- 
al statistical procedures may be required 
to supioly missing information. Participation 
of agency personnel will encoura<^e agency self- 
evaluation. The section of the report dealing 
with resources might be published as an 
abbreviated "Directory of Services" for geh- 
eral distrubition in the District. 

The report should be of particular im- 
portance for urban renewal personnel in pro- 
viding greater insight into the human factors 
that may help or hinder the renewal program, 
and into the available services to help deal 
with them, 
2) Goal -Setting 

further preliminary to plan making there must 
be a third study: The Statement of Social 

The first part of this statement would 
deal with a prelection of the numbers, types 
and characteristics of the people who will 
live in the District in a period in the future — 
say ten or twenty years — if the natural course 
of events is allowed to continue. To make this 
projection the District must be considered 
in terms of its City and Metropolitan econo- 


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-f??'^ TO'i "^c^Oj'V'XeS lo 7'ir;;^-):">t !■':'■ 

•.■!-.'>.T;^jiT Q 

-;v-x T:"i!.: 3j; j'-^aq lo etf bin oils d'Ticqer? ^rPI 
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I?59?; alori Qj- 3ooxv':^9a eLCBLiyiVB odi odrix bna 

« ;j ^> '; J. -J J V.1 j _ -..1 V,. 

zea7^ , ^TeJrsvjjfi eri:'' lo xto/rioer c^q e rf:j■x^^^ Lh&b 

Ilx-r oiiw eiqonq f3ii:T lo zC'li'Rt'i.^oOB''s.Bdo ban 

-^■lijiifi: ^i-:;- aj bor-iscf ;■•!. nx .toi^'j siC enj ni e'vj:! 

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mic and social relationships. This study 
might be called an Analysis and Projection of 
Social Function for the District, 

In terms of the South End, such a 
metropolitan analysis will throw comparative 
light on its unique social role or function. 
For example, it is known t o provide a port of 
entry for Negroes and Puerto Ricans, a 
Skid Row, and convenient asco8»0'datloaas Hot 
the aging. Its population could probably 
be characterized as having generally less 
education, lower incomes, and low-le vel occu- 
pational skills. Understanding of probable . 
future trends in the distribution and charac- 
teristics of such groups in the Metropolitan 
area may throw light on social and economic 
changes that can be utilized in setting goals 
for the South End. 

In preparing this analysis the Planning 
Specialist would deal with questions such as 
the following: H„w many and what kinds of 
people will likely live in the South End if 
nothing is done in the w ay of planning or 
xirban renewal? What changes in population are 
likely to be brought about by outside social 
and economic forces? Are there likely to be 

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.noxion;ji ^ro alorr .Xb^oc;^ f;';jT:'Ini; sjl no dTi^jI 

-O'i-'iBr'o bH'i^ no ' ctecfx'X't si b or^cr ni: '^r:;x:£0'^o sijjji.f'l 

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even more older people? Are levels of 
health and income likely to improve as the 
Metropolitan economy prospers'' Or is the 
South End likely to have an increasing 
number of unskilled workers who cannot he 
absorbed by advancing technology? Will the 
South End be even more important as a port- 
of- entry for minority groups? 

A second aspect of the Statement of 
Social Obiectives would be consideration of 
the possible ?nd desirable changes in social 
composition that might be deliberately brought 
about through urban renewal and other means. 
An example would be the reduction of certain 
population groups to provide them better 
housing elsewhere and to make room for ex- 
pansion of open space, hospitals, and schools. 
Another might be the introduction of middle- 
incoHB families with children through the 
construction of garden apartments. Another 
might be increasing the numbers of well-to- 
do individual adults and childless couples 
through the provision of high-income utility 

A third aspect would attempt to sketch the 
broad goals for the wellbeing of both people 

row beii.' lecJirfim 

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"^^ j-lJTiO hi'Uj, acrliJijB iBi.rfoj:viLfii oii) 

who remain In the District and of those 
who move in. These objectives, for instance, 
might include such matters as enhanced eamw 
lug capacity and better housing for minorities, 
increased democratic participation of all 
groups in community affairs, higher aspir- 
ations and better opportunities for teen-agers, 
and enlarged avenues to health and friend- 
ship for the aging. This formulation of 
social goals brings into the open a social 
dimension which is often unrecognizied or 
glossed over in urban renewal, '^uch goals 
could be particularly valuable in providing 
guidance for land use determinations. For 
instance, they could throw light on the ad- 
visability of providing housing of various 
types, such as low-rent public housing, 
housing for the aging, middle-income row 
housing, and high-rise efficiency apartments. 
They could give asSistsnce in the d etermination 
of community facilities. The amounts and types 
of open space and structures necessary to pro- 
vide various welfare, educational, and 
leisure time services for present population 
groups or for new ones, could be more 
thoroughly defined. 

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ioubfi »•;• ' ! sbxv 

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The Statement of Social Ob.jectlves cannot 
be expected to provide immediate assistance to 
high priority renewal pro.iects, simply because 
of the length of time it will take to prepare 
it. Such a Statement, however, will have 
other benefits. It ^^rill help In later prioritty 
renewal proiects, especially if these are the 
socially "difficult" ones. The planning staff 
employed in its preparation can offer on-going 
advice to the renewal planners on social con- 
siderations. If carried on expeditiously, 
the Statement should be ready by the time 
first-priority renewal projects involving 
rehabilitation and conservation reach the 
action phase. It would provide long-range 
goals for the social service programs that 
might be carried on in connection with 
execution of such proiects, 
3) Proposals 

Three gnidepost ret)orts are now ccmpleted. 
The Social Profile , The Inventory of Needs and 
Services , and The Statement of Social Object Ives . 
The Planning Specialist assigned to the South End 
has a good idea spelled out In black and white of 
what kind of community the South End is now, and 
vrtiat, in realistic terms, it can become. There may 

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be some missing links because of gaps in available in- 
formation. These deficiencies can be tackled in special 
studies. Social services and facilities can now be 
planned with a comprehensive and long-range approach 
geared to needs and potentials, 

LITIES: The first part of the Proposal is a Long- 
Range Plan for Social Services and Facilities. This 
spells out the specific programs of service and systems 
of physical facilities needed to achieve the goals 
previousl)y set forth. Various examples come to mind, 
Assiaming that the South End will continue t o be the 
port-of -entry for minority groups, one service would 
undoubtedly be community organization efforts to pro- 
vide growth of civic know-how and protection of cul- 
tural values. Again assxoming that the numbers of 
single aging people will increase in the South End, 
another set of programs would be needed, such as 
counselling, public and mental health services, 
and cultural and recreational outlets. If the urban 
renewal program calls for garden apartments for middle- 
income families with children, the Plan must include 
proposals for education, recreation, and other public 
and private services that will compete with svirburban 

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An important issue will be what types of pro- 
grams can be mobilized to provide rehabilitation for 
the inhabitants of Skid Row, Another will concern 
programs to rrive youth a good start or a new outlook 
toward responsible adult life. While such programs 
of service lie almost completely outside the scope 
of urban renewal as now conceived, the plon-ning of 
the physical spaces and facilities which they re- 
quire overlaps the responsibilities of renewal 
planners. Definition of needed programs of service 
can help better to define this aspect of renewal 
planning. Mobilization of social service programs 
could result in new facilities and combinations, 
A neighborhood service center where community 
organization programs, leisure time programs, and 
health and case-work services are available, is an 
example . 

A long-range plan should be broken down into a 
set of priorities indicating logical and practical 
first steps that will point toward the desired re- 
sults. In a District such as the South End, however, 
first steps are likely to be taken by the urban re- 
newal program. In such cases, two short-range plans 
are proposed, supporting urban renewal;, ^he Short - 
Range Plan for Services in Carrying Out Relocation 
Tro lects , and the Short-Range Plan for Services in 
Carrying Out Conservation and Rehabilitation Pro iects . 


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RELOCATION PROJECTS: In the South End, as In other 
Districts, substandard environment will make neces- 
sary large-scale clearance of homes and businesses. 
Relocation of families and businesses to other p arts 
of the District or of Meiiropolitan' Bos tori ''will be 
called for. Foving such families and businesses 
and seeing that families get proper quarters are 
the responsibility of the Redevelopment Authority. 
As the experience in the West End of Boston has 
demonstrated, however, there is likely to be a traumatic 
effect even though the actual physical process of 
moving is well administered. The problem of moving 
is a great one to a family which already has many 
difficulties. The security of neighborhood ties is 
broken. A strange new environment may be difficult 
to face. Small businesses forced to relocate face 
problems of their own, especially if they are marginal 
operations run by old people. 

Social work services, if properly planned and 
brought into play, are particularly able to deal with 
such situations. The objective should be to make 
relocation a constructive ratlrer than a traumatic 
experience. This will involve sensitive and varied 
services, both at the point of departure and at the 
point of arrival of those forced to move. 

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Plans for providing such services should be 
made for clearance projects. They Involve under- 
standing of social, cultural, and ethnic charac- 
teristics, aspirations, inccmes, and emotional 
strengths and weaknesses of the families to be 
relocated. A special approach would be needed for 
small businessmen. Such information would provide 
a partial basis for providing services. Additional 
know-how could be gained from previous experience in 
Boston and elsewhere. A local agency, such as a neigh- 
borhood center, ocould play an important role. Intensive 
relocation services to prepare families and build con- 
structive attitudes might include educational and 
informational services, youth programs, commvinity 
organizations, and family counselling. For tto se 
families especially needing reinforcement, some type 
of welcoming and orientation service might be pro- 
vided at the point of arrival. 

This type of planning cannot be handled at a 
District level alone. A City-wide if not T'^etropolitan 
program is necessary. A joint study of relocation is 
already underway between the Boston Commxmity 
Development Program and the Boston Redevelopment 
Authority, The place where services are given, how- 
ever, should be the neighborhood and the district and 
this must be reflected in the district plan. 

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REMABILITATIOM: In those parts of the South End 
that will not be cleared but will be fixed up and 
saved, the urban renewal program may make demands on 
the inhabitants as disrupting to their established 
attitudes and patterns of behavior as would actual 
relocation. The neighborhood and the commxmity will 
need to be viewed with new eyes. Sights will have to 
be raised and methods of working together evolved. 
Personal problems will be more important to many 
families than poor housing or rundown neighborhoods. 
Many will have emotional problems which hinder par- 
ticipation. Family breakdown and juvenile delinquency 
will be as worrysome as the need for a better 
apartment. Puerto Ricans will have problems of jobs 
and of language. 

Such needs of people are broader and more com- 
plicated than simply better housing. Failure to 
consider them may result in the human factor slowing 
if not wrecking urban renewal. A plan is necessary 
to bring to bear services for human rehabilitation and 
conservation, at the same time that houses are being 
fixed up. Programs of community organization, family 
counselling, among others, should be focussed on the 
renewal project area. 

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This Plan should be part of the responsibility 
of the District Planning Coordinator and should lead 
toward the long-ranp;e goals for the District. 

1) Additional. Aspects of Diatrict Planning 

The preceding documents will be tangible results 
of the planning process. These documents, however, no 
matter how well prepared, are not a set of master plans 
which all must blindly follow, 1m or is the Planning 
Coordinator a master mind that relieves others from 
planning responsibility, A major significance of 
this process lies in its educational value. It spreads 
the planning idea. It provides a common background 
of information and goals within which agencies and 
citizen groups can play a more meaningful role. It 
stimulates others into research and planning of their 
own. It provides arguments for the realighment of 
present services and the mobilization of new resources. 

Thus, if properly carried on, it is a triggering 
process, the creative ends of which cannot be forseen. 

Important in achieving such results is the par- 
ticipation in the planning process of those affected 
by final decisions. We assxame that the District Planning 
Specialist is assigned to a District Team of the ABCD, 
headed by a District Director, .One part of this team 

a II ;' I ? A ?i s a,i /^.ivo o„ , " „.. 2. JLIL3 ^ ^i^r 

■;:tIr:;'^'-\ eJ" -r IlJa-r ;:,:;■ a ew!:; oof- 

' b; '-aO/jB. iiolri;-/ nlriJi^-; •i:Ii;:.':v.' i«« i 'io'lul.lo 

.■.fylfot Xy^^nlnii'Of^ si:oirf i?- ■v;nlq fSfiso ; ■ 'in 

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is the community organization staff which is respon- 
sible for citizen participation in District develoiDment 
(Report of Task Force II). An operational program is 
necessary which relates ABCD efforts in planning for 
human needs and community organization, to urban 
renewal. In the South End, as in other high-priority 
urban renewal areas, the activities of ABCD must catch 
up with urban renewal. In other districts of lower 
priority, a more ideal schedule wherein ABCF prepares 
the way for urban rene^^ral may be set up. 

It is of the utmost Importance that1±ie District 
Planning Specialist work closely with the urban 
renewal staff assigned to each District, Once his 
basic studies are made, he will have considerable to 
contribute to this staff through his knowledge of social 
conditions. This contribution will be in the pro- 
vision of information on the area, in development of 
programs needed to carry out relocation, rehabili- 
tation and conservation, and in the incorporation of 
social objectives and social services and facilities in 
the long-range urfean renewal plan. One example of joint 
action lies in the surveys required by the Redevelopment 
Authority, Inclusion of additional social data in such 
surveys would give them added value. 


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"The Planning Specialist must be in close, informal 
day-to-day comm\anicat ion with other staff and with 
citizens of the District, Formal mechanisms to g ain 
participation may be desirable, A possibility that 
should be considered are three committees that meet 
periodically: first, a professional staff committee 
composed of District representatives of the Redevelop- 
ment Autto rity and the ABCD; second, a planning committee 
of citizen leaders from the District; and third, a 
technical advisory committee of professionals in 
specialized fields, including those from the District. 

Each District planning program should take into 
accoimt the desirability of undertakings of various 
types at neighborhood level. These may be special 
research projects or demonstrations, V^here these are 
undertaken, they should not be considered in isolation 
but in terms of the total operations for the District, 
They should be conceived with Imagination and breadth 
for their wide learning value to the total program, 
2) Operations at City Level ; 

The District planning efforts are really field 
operations. Planning staff must be centralized at 
City level. There are many advantages t o euch centra- 
lization. Training and cross-fertilization of ideas 
are particularly vital and most easily achieved in a 


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central office. Centralization also permits most 
flexible use of regular staff, as work loads change. 
Uniform operational policies and procedures can best 
be developed from a central office. It will s oon be 
found necessary to draw upon various professional 
skills j such as experts in education and health. For 
the sake of economy it will probably make more s ense to 
combine these in a central flexible pool rather than 
to make regular assignments to District offices. The 
present organization of data and services is another 
reason for a central office. Factual data are almost 
always compiled on a City-wide basis. Their collection 
and analysis are efficiently carried on in a central 
place, according to uniform p rocedures that facilitate 
comparison of the various Districts, 

The vast majority of public and voluntary agencies 
are organized on a City basis. Policies and prograns 
are decided at City headquarters, not in the Districts, 
Many State and Federal agencies will also need to be 
directly involved, for which a central focus is again 

A close relationship to the officials of the 
Boston Redevelopment Authority is necessary at City 
level, as well as at District level, A similar close 
relationship should exist to citizen volvmteers. The 
same principles of planning guidance and stimulation, 


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rather than authoritative direction, apnly at City 
level as at District level. 

An adequate research staff must be at the service 
of the planning arm. This research is necessary to 
gather, organize and maintain the facts necessary for 
District planning. In addition, various research studies 
will b e found necessary to fill in gaps. Some of these 
may be of a long-ran f?e nature and call for new pro- 
cedures on the part of the various City and State 

General backgrounds tudies of the City and 
Metropolitan Area will be necessary as a frame of 
reference for the statements of social objectives in 
District plans. For this pur nose the Analysis and Pro- 
.jection of Social Function , dealing with present and 
future social ecology of the Metropolitan Area, is 
needed, among other studies. Detailed analyses, made 
by Professor Prank Sweetser of the Department of 
Anthropology and Sociolof^y of Boston TTniversity, now 
being published by the State Department of Mental 
Health, could provide important base lines for this work. 

Another responsibility of a central staff as an 
extension of the planning function is the stimulation 
of special demonstration projects to b e carried on 
by appropriate agencies. These may offer direct 
services as well as providing factual data and exper- 


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lence for developing new methods* An example of such 
a multi-purpose project in the South Fnd would be a 
counselling and referral service especially designed 
to meet the needs of the aging. 

Another job for a central staff is to explore 
relationships between s ocial objectives, physical 
planning, and various economic studies, such as 
those done by the Greater Boston Economic Study 
Committee and other groups. By coordinating efforts 
made in economic, physical and social analyses, it 
may be possible to work tew ard a balanced set of poli- 
cies whichw ould relate programs in each field that 
are needed to transform the p recesses of City decay 
into those of regeneration, 
3) Staff ; 

A Director of Social Planning is needed to head 
up the program. He should be responsible for the tech- 
nical performance of professional assistants and a 
group of part-tii^e specialists in different fields, 
such as health, recreation, family service. This 
central pool of full-time assistants and part-time 
consultants would be the source from which the District 
Planning Specialist would be drawn and assigned res- 
ponsibility for developing the social plan in a 
particular district. Once he is assigned to a district, 
the Planning Specialist would come under the administra- 
tive supervision of the ABCD District Director, 

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Personnel may be secured from professional 
fields such as community organization at council 
level, city planning, educational administration, 
public administration, and social work administration. 
Maturity and professional skills should be commensurate 
with the level of respomsibility. 

From whatever community professions the staff is 
drawn, it would seem that personality traits — intellec- 
tual capacity, imagination, ingenuity, skill, per- 
sistence, ability to relate t o people, and resourceful- 
neas--are as important as professional training. 
Particularly important is orientation in the planning 
approach: the ability to analyze, project, concep- 
tualize and program as a background to specific de- 

Research staff members assigned to the planning 
arm should be fully grounded in modern community 
research methods. Sociology seems the most suitable 
professional background, although it is possible that 
persons from a related field, such as economics but 
with thorough grounding in the behavioral sciences, 
might be eligible. It is important that this staff 
have s cme experience and aptitude in working with 
planners and administrators in an action program. 
Imagination in seeing research needs, a sense of economy 
in operation, and clarity in presentation are important. 
The task of "promoting" research is as important as 
actual technical performance. 

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In-service training for staff might be particular- 
ly appropriate to provide a common denominator of 
basic knowledge. Such training could be given by 
carefully prepared intensive seminars, conducted by 
university personnel or practicing professionals from 
the metropolitan area. These seminars might be open 
to other staffs, s uch a s that of the Redevelopment 
Authority. Preliminary ideas of the contents of such a 
series of seminars would be: (1) basic areas of 
interest and research methods of the behavioral 
sciences; (2) tools and processes of city planning, 
including its economic and social implications; 
(3) urban renewal procediares as developed to date; 
and (1;) concepts, methods and goals in other professional 
fields, such as education, physical and mental health, 
social work, municipal administration, and cultural 

Arrangements with local institutions of higher 
learning may be worked out for on-the-job training 
of staff and for student placement. 

In addition to this core staff, the services of 
various "specialists" would be needed as the program 
unfolds. These specialists might be of several cate- 
gories: consultants in social research and in sub- 
stantive areas of operation or special staff assigned 
to specific programs at City or District level, such as 


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a relocation iDlanner or a public health officer. The 
methods of employing such staff will vary. In some 
cases it may be found desirable to employ them as regular 
staff. In other cases they may be "borrowed" from 
another agency. Consultants might b e employed on a 
per diem or ccntractual basis. Staff of research 
and demonstration projects could b e financed by special 

A; sufficient amount of time is needed to test the 
value of the planning function. The professional staff 
should have proper citizen and administrative support 
and should have sufficient latitude to do the long- 
range thinking required, 
k) Carrying Out Plana ; 

It is important to remember that the planning 
documents are termed "gnideposts". They d o not assume 
any final authority. In their entirety they w ill not 
come up for formal approval by any legislative or 
administrative agency. The specific programs of a ction 
will, however, call for decisions by v arious groups with 
the power to act. 

Efforts to insure that proposals are ultimately 
carried out by decision-making bodies should be built 
into the entire planning process. 

One important means of leverage will be the Review 
Committees proposed by Task Force II, Certain common 

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denominators of need are sure to be found In all 
Districts, As these are channeled upward through the 
District Directors, the Planning Specialists and the 
ABCD administration, these special committees of 
citizens and professionals will have the task of 
developing and gaining acceptance of specific programs 
which are City-wide in application but vital to the success 
of District plans. Thinking of the South End, these 
maybe in such fields as treatment and rehabilitation 
of alcoholics, provision of specialized services for the 
aging, mental health programs, and enlarged vocational 
guidance and training programs for the tinskilled. 

It is in the public sector where the great bulk of 
money for social purposes is spent. Good relations 
must be established and maintained with City agencies 
such as the Boston Housing Authority, the School 
Department, the Department of Public Welfare, and the 
Health Department, State and Federal agencies will ajlso 
be involved in District services. 

In the private sector consideration must be given 
to those fund raising organizations and health and 
welfare federations x^hich influence the spending of 
many millions each year. These include the United 
Fund, the United Community Services of Metropolitan 
Boston, the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater 
Boston Inc., and the Cardinal Gushing Charity Fund, 

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Another important potential is in the guidelines 
that could be furnished to local and national foun- 
dations. Good planning could help formulate long- 
range policies of distribution and also provide a 
frame of reference in which individual requests could 
be evaluated. 

Another way of carryino; out planning proposals 
will be through the public opinion created by citizen 
participation in District planning;. The work of 
Tast Force I-B in Roxbury demonstrates a way in which 
the needs felt by citizens can b e expressed. If 
planning proposals stem in part from these needs, a 
groundswell of public opinion can have some effect in 
producing desired changes. 

As a general rule, a most important way of gaining 
support for r)lanning proposals is the involvement in 
the actual planning of those t\ho have the power to act 
in the end. The necessity for staffs in the Districts 
and at City level to maintain good informal relation- 
ships and to work with formal advisory committees has 
already been discussed. Various specific methods for 
gaining involvement may be used. One is the involvement 
of agencies on special problem-solving projects as a 
step to bigger things. Another is joint research 
efforts to obtain data of mutual concern. Another is 
carrying out and publicising demonstration projects 

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with wide learning value, /Another is making avail- 
able grants of money for new services, with the stip- 
ulation that matching funds be provided. Still 
another is guiding agencies in the selection of new 
$) Continuity 

In its early stages this Planning Program must 
be of a n intensive and ambitious "crash" nature if it 
is to be effective in relation to the areas of high 
priority in the present urban renewal effort. De- 
tailed studies on special programs would nrobably still 
be necessary in such areas, and after a period of 
years elements of the original plan would need to be 
up-dated. Planning service might also be provided in 
districts not covered by the urban renewal program, 
such as Dorchester and Brighton-Allston. These might 
accompany s ervices in city planning, provided by the 
city g overnment, and community organization services. 

At this point it cannot be forecast how such 
continued planning would be financed in the indefinite 
future. There are various possibilities. The City 
of Boston itself could adopt this function; it 
might become an arm of UCS; it might be permanently 
supported by foundations as a guide to policies of dis- 
tribution; or a combination. It might b e financed in 
part by the Federal povernment as a condition for fur- 

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ther local grants for urban renewal and for health and 
welfare services. 

Exploration of ways to provide such continuity 
should be part of the program of ABCD, 


The Social Profile as Part of a District Flan 

Any social plan has -to be carried out through people, 
Furthermore, these people are usually organized into some 
network of social relationships. If a plan is tied in 
with these relations'! 'r>s or takes tbem into account, it 
ia much more likely to prove successful. 
What the Social Profile Uhdertakes To Do 

The social profile is designed to uncover and de.- 
scribe this network of social relationships at different 
levels of geographic complexity. It undertakes to gain 
knowledge about the leadership structure, the organi- 
zational (associations, clubs) pattern, the feeling of 
identification people have for the locality unit being 
studied, how local issues arise and are met, character- 
istic processes of conflict or cooperation, different 
social groupings and their aspirations and spokesmen, 
the value systems related to the behavior of people in. 
a given area, and interrelationships of the local area 
with the larger community of which it is a part. 

Existing quantitative information from other studies 
and from census reports can be used to give basic facts 

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about the relative size of different socio-economic 
groupings and can pinpoint some of the variables affecting 
social life in an area. ?Iowever, most of the information 
on which a profile Is based has to be collected from 
knowledgeable, people through direct personal interviews. 
This is because the profile undertakes to present not simply 
a series of statistical tables about easily measured facts 
(state of housing, delinquency rates, etc.), as important 
as these are, but It seeks to tell how the local unit being 
studied behaves as a sm.all social system. In other words, 
it tries to describe how things get done and what prevents 
programs from succeeding, A rough analogy might be made 
to the descrintion of a person by someone who knows him 
fairly well. One may give physical measurements of the 
individual, tell about bis eye color, weight, etc., but 
one does not convey the distinctiveness of the Individual 
vmtil one goes beyond these easily measured facts to even 
more Important facts such as the way the person organizes 
his work, pays his bills, treats his wife and children, as- 
pires or fails to aspire to better things, spends his 
leisure, and associates with a selected group of colleagues, 
neighbors or friends. In other words, the local community 
profile tries to describe the individuality of the local 
area by discovering and presenting the unique combination 
of s ocial traits found in that area. 

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Methods Used 

The methods chosen are those which, through long 
experience, have been shown to get the job done quickly, 
economically, and with a fair degree of accuracy, fhe 
methods are the following; 

1, Careful background orientation t hrough study of 
existing reports, census data, conversations with 
people from outside familiar with the area being 

2. Interviews with 25 - ^0 local informants whose 
names have been purposely turned uo in the inter- 
viewing process, (Each informant is asked to 
name eight or more others whom he considers key 
leaders in the area,) 

3» Interviews with informants who may not have been 
listed as key leaders but who can provide neces- 
sary information about different segments or nelgh- 
borhoods. Since our method brings to light the 
existence of these segments and neighborhoods, it 
is relatively easy through inquiry to discover 
those with most knowledge about them, 

I|., Careful analysis of the interview data and other 
Information according to a pre-designed scheme 
based on social systems theory. This helps one 
classify, categorize, and interpret data in such 
a way that one is avrare of the dynamic aspects 
of the local unit being studied, 

5, Preparation of a report which is designed to high- 
light the characteristics significant for under- 
standing the social traits of the area (leader- 
ship, organizational pattern, issues, etc.) and 
their relevance to the social planning which is 
proposed. Also, the implications of these find- 
ings for community organization can be spelled 
out. At the first draft stage of the report, it 
is again checked with selected individuals from 
the local area to assure greater accuracy and the 
avoidance of terms which might unintentionally give 
offence. Yet, the report has t o be specific 
and vivid if It is to measure up to the require- 

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The methods described here make it clear that this 
is not a public opinion poll or an extensive survey, each 
of which has its own purposes to serve. This profile is a 
description of why things are as they are as viewed by per- 
ceptive leaders and as the data are fitted into a sound 
theoretical scheme of analysis. Throughout the process 
cross checks are built in. These have been described in 
other writings and need not be t aken up here. 
The Problem of Geographical Levels in a Metropolitan Setting 

The interview materials will afford insight into at 
least three levels of associational life: the Boston 
area, the District level, and the neighborhood level. The 
unit on which the profile would be most likely to concen- 
trate, however, would be the District. V/e would start 
out treating each of these as though it were a social unit, 
although we would probably find that some were not socially 
viable although they might s erve useful planning needs. 
We would then discover the various neighborhoods within the 
district and undertake to characterize each of ihera brief- 
ly in terms of the same categories used for the district. 
At the same time, we would c ollect information about the 
way people thought the District was tied in with the larger 
Boston area. For example, in our search for district 
leaders we would quickly find that some people mentioned 
were important in the district because of their connections 
in City Hall or at the State House; we would find others 

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mentioned because of their strong neighborhood following. 
Our theoretical approach enables us analytically to work 
at these different levels without cm fusing the issue; in 
fact, we should emerge from the study with Interesting 
observations about these various levels, though the focus 
proposed here is upon the District. 
Who Would Conduct the Study 

For such a streamlined method to sucdeed, those doing 
the interviewing have to be aware of the theoretical scheme 
being used and also sensitive to the side comments made by 
informants, because these are dictated after the interview 
and become part of the data analyzed. At 1b ast two arrange- 
ments are feasible, each with its own advantages and dis- 

1, An interviewing team c ould be brought in from the 
Research Institute of the Department of Sociology 
and Anthropology, Boston TTniversity, to do each 
profile desired. The method of approaching the 
District would be worked out with the Boston 
Community Development Program, as would be the 

2, Interviewers could be s elected from the staff of 
the Boston Community Development Program, then 
trained and supervised in the field work. The 
analysis of data could else be done in consultation 
tA th such a staff after additional training and 
under close supervision, but a trained sociolo- 
gist would be required full-time during the ana- 
lysis period, 

A Suggested Proposal 

Without obligating itself in any way to profiles 

for all eleven districts, it might be wise to authorize the 


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preparation of one profile. In the light of this experience, 
decision can be taken as to whether or not these are essential 
steps in the formulation of a social plan for each district. 


*:j-oi':!::fpJ:b doss =so1 -ciBia leloon a lo aorrrBlyfft'ro'j; eiio rA a-co^t-s 



Victor Bynoe, Board Member, Boston Housing Authority 

C. Raymond Chase, Associate Director, United Community 
Services of Metropolitan Boston 

P, Douglas Cochrane (advisory committee). President, 
United South End Settlements 

Daniel Cronin, Deputy Director, Boston Welfare Department 

Father John V, Driscoll, S,J,, Dean, Boston College 
School of Social Work 

Herbert Gleason, Board Member, United South End 

Settlements and vice-president, Boston Citizens 
Committee for Better Schools 

Richard Green, Chief Planner, Community ReneiiJal Planning 
Section, Boston Redevelopment Authority 

Dr. B, R, Hutcheson, Director, Division of Mental Health, 
Massachusetts Department of Mental Health 

Mrs, Alan Morse (advisory committee). Chairman, Mayor's 
Committee on Housing for the Elderly 

Frederick Taylor, member and former president of the 
Recreation, Informal Education and Group Work 
Division of United Community Services of Metro- 
politan Boston 

Chief Consultant, Mark Fortune, Director of Cambridge 
Community Services 

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