Randolph : Boston's gateway suburb
Author(s)Madden, James, Jr. (James Michael)
Boston's gateway suburb
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
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In the last two decades, certain American suburbs have begun to struggle with issues traditionally thought of as urban problems and dealt with in city settings, such as failing schools, fragmented community, affordable housing, immigrant incorporation, poverty, crime, and others. These places have historically functioned as a first step into the suburbs for people arriving from the city or from abroad. In the Boston metropolitan area, Randolph is the prime example of this sort of place, a "gateway suburb." Gateway suburbs have limited capacity to manage so-called urban issues because of their suburban size, structure, resources and location. In 2007, Randolph suffered a crisis year when the state officially declared Randolph's schools underperforming, its library lost accreditation, the community suffered three brazen murders, a fatal fire took the lives of several young immigrants, and a local politician made anti-semitic remarks to the superintendent of schools. A turnaround has been in the works for the last two years, but Randolph is beginning to lose population and many of the issues underlying the 2007 crises are longstanding and unresolved. This paper will explore in depth the case of Randolph, MA to examine how such a community responds to the distress evident in the problems of 2007. It aims to develop strategies for gateway suburbs to remain communities of choice - places where families with economic means to make a choice will choose to live. Through interviews with current and former residents, this study also seeks to understand how they understand the town, and how their interpretations influenced decisions to attempt to improve Randolph, to disengage, or to leave. This in depth case study will contribute to the formation of strategies to maintain gateway suburbs as thriving communities of choice.
Thesis (M.C.P.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, 2010.This electronic version was submitted by the student author. The certified thesis is available in the Institute Archives and Special Collections.Cataloged from student submitted PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 74-75).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.