Boston Relaxes Construction Ban But Limits Work To Essential Projects

All is eerily quiet in the Seaport where construction activity has ceased. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
All is eerily quiet in the Seaport where construction activity has ceased. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

The city of Boston's ban on most kinds of construction is loosening, enabling some work to resume under new requirements that resemble rules set by the state.

Many housing projects and other developments that the state considers essential have been stalled for weeks in Boston, as the city took stricter measures against the coronavirus.

That will gradually change this month, but Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said Wednesday at a news conference that the city's relaxation is not a full-scale reopening.

"All active work is still currently limited to essential projects only," Walsh said. "All of these sites have been required to provide safety plans, a signed affidavit to the city of Boston confirming that the safety plan will be followed."

Safety plans must include strategies to maintain 6 feet between workers on job sites and adequate supplies of personal protective equipment.

Any project the state deems non-essential will still be banned in Boston.

Developers of projects with approved safety plans can immediately begin preparing job sites.

Starting May 18, work can begin on public schools, roads and residential buildings with three or fewer units, among other select categories. The city had previously allowed emergency construction work, such as utility repairs, to continue.

On May 26, all projects that the state categorizes as essential can resume.


Headshot of Callum Borchers

Callum Borchers Reporter
Callum covered the Greater Boston business community for Bostonomix.



More from WBUR

Listen Live