Bernie Sanders weighs in on Suffolk Downs

Democrstic Party presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) weighed in on the largest development project in the city ahead of the Super Tuesday Primary in Massachusetts.
Sanders tweeted his opinion that the 161 acre Suffolk Downs development by HYM Investment should be more affordable.
HYM plans to development 10,000 units of housing with over 1,000 units of affordable housing slated for the site. This would make the Suffolk Downs development the single largest development of affordable housing in the state in decades.
However, that did not stop Sanders from tweeting last Thursday, “We need affordable housing for all instead of more gentrifying luxury developments for the few. I stand with the longtime residents of East Boston fighting displacement from the communities they have spent generations building.”
Sanders’ tweet drew immediate backlash from elected officials like Mayor Martin Walsh and City Councilor Laydia Edwards.
“Good evening this is the district city councilor from East Boston,” tweeted Edwards. “Don’t worry BernieSanders I have a plan for that.”
Edwards advocated to up the affordable housing at the site from the mandatory 13 percent to at least 20 percent.
Mayor Walsh tweeted, “Thanks, Sen. Sanders, but there’s much more to this story. In East Boston we’ve listened to hundreds of residents over the past two and half years to help shape a project that will create over 1,000 units of affordable housing, thousands of good jobs, and open spaces on abandoned land.”
In a statement HYM’s founding partner Thomas N. O’Brien said, “That’s why our plans for Suffolk Downs will create the largest amount of affordable housing ever created by a single project in Massachusetts. The project includes 10,000 new housing units, with 20 percent affordable overall, while creating 14,000 union jobs. And by redeveloping a shuttered horse racing track, we are adding to the communities of East Boston and Revere without displacing a single resident.”

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