At a Glance

Located just south of the Back Bay, the South End is an elegant residential neighborhood known for its Victorian townhouses and many small parks. The neighborhood was originally built on tidal flats during the mid-1800s, planned to attract the wealthy merchant class with a regular street grid, elegant townhouses, and thirty parks. Today it remains a popular residential area for with a thriving restaurant and arts scene, and is the United States' largest Victorian residential district. 

This diverse neighborhood is home to active young families, professionals, and immigrants, and is popular with Boston’s gay community. Residents of the South End inhabit a mix of historic brick town homes and publicly funded housing. The many parks, including the Southwest Corridor Path built over the depressed Orange Line train, offer green space to the area. The Boston Center for the Arts brings numerous performances to the neighborhood each year. 

The neighborhood’s restaurants, bars, galleries, and boutiques line Tremont and Washington Streets, and the summertime SoWa Open Market attracts artisans and shoppers from all over the city. Washington Gateway Main Street and the South End Business Alliance support local business owners. Cyclorama, a unique round conference space at the BCA, hosts public and private events. Major tenants of the neighborhood include Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine. 

Community Engagement Managers

The Community Engagement Managers (CEM) of the BPDA are responsible for assisting staff members with the coordination of all outreach in regard to planning initiatives and proposed development in Boston's neighborhoods. CEMs work to ensure each BPDA external process actively reflects the community's goals, in addition to being the point of contact for constituent questions. Have questions about a certain project in your neighborhood? Feel free to reach out them:


Naoise McDonnell

Community Engagement Manager

Department: Communications


Brighton, South Dorchester, Fenway, Newmarket Study Area, South End


For information about planning context, zoning, or BPDA review processes, please contact [email protected].