Downtown Crossing: Boston in the Spotlight

The historic area just east of Boston Common is on the radar once again.

Courtesy Yvonne's
OF 9

In all old cities, neighborhood fortunes rise and fall. Nowhere is this truer than in the Downtown Crossing district of Boston. A shopping, literary, and publishing center in the late 1800s, it suffered in the years after World War II. The burlesque shows and porno shops moved in and stayed until the early 1990s, when former mayor Tom Menino helped lead a redevelopment push that eventually purged the trade from the area. It’s been a long time coming, but thanks to some preservation of historic landmarks; early, visionary developments that now anchor both ends of the neighborhood; and the influx of new restaurants, bars, and theater renovations, it has arrived.