BFD confiscating propane tanks nightly at Mass & Cass, city considering capacity limit

BOSTON — The city of Boston says the Boston Fire Department has been confiscating propane tanks and other fire hazards in the troubled Mass and Cass corridor on a nightly basis.

According to the city, those items are being distributed by several organizations that have been ignoring repeated requests to stop.

It was among the latest issues discussed at the May meeting of the South End-Newmarket-Roxbury Working Group on Addiction, Recovery, and Homelessness.

The City’s Coordinated Response Team Director said the city is considering enforcing a capacity limit on busy Atkinson Street ahead of the summer months.

“We’re looking at ways to enforce crowd control,” said Tania Del Rio.

Del Rio said it’s among one of several ideas being discussed to address those who have housing and continue to congregate.

“There’s nothing but human suffering out there,” said South End resident George Stergios. “Go out there and look at those people and open your eyes. It’s terrible.”

Despite the public opinion that there’s been no progress, Boston Police said violent crime is down in area by 24 percent compared to this time last year.

Police said an average of 175-200 people are congregating in the area daily.

“This is not Seattle. This is not San Francisco. The numbers that we’re talking about in Boston offer us an opportunity to try something fundamentally different,” said South End Community Forum leader Steve Fox.

The city has indicated that it’s reignited efforts to get a regional discussion started with other Massachusetts cities and towns.

The goal is to discuss some of the issues impacting communities all over the state including a housing shortage.

Boston officials said they just met with leaders from Cambridge and Somerville and will be meeting with leaders from Worcester next week.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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