Meters on the Beach – Cleanliness is Priority Number One

During the past five years Revere Beach has never looked better – and it would look even better if the vast majority of the people who use the beach, who come here by automobile, picked up their trash rather than leaving it on the beach as though the beach was their private dumping ground.

At other beaches where visitors are required to pay for the privilege of using the beach, the beaches remain cleaner and unsoiled by comparison to the general public coming down to Revere Beach to trash the place for the day at no cost.

Revere Beach as the first public beach in this nation was also the dirtiest public beach in this nation for a long, long time.

In recent years, the Department of Conservation and Recreation has performed a virtual miracle on the beach, cleaning it daily of tons of trash and whatever else people leave behind.

We have suggested metering the beach before and we feel comfortable about the beach being metered in the near future.

Metering the beach will change the demographic of those visiting the beach.

People who pay to park will generally show more respect to the beach than those who pay nothing to use it and who trash it thoroughly each time.

The kind of people who come to the beach because nothing has to be paid won’t come back if they have to feed a meter.

Metering the beach will raise badly needed revenues over the course of a decade. Once the cost for the meters is paid back, money placed in the meters will become an unrestricted flow of cash revenue that might potentially be used to offset the cost for the upkeep of the beach and for improvements.

Residents who live on the beach and who do not have private parking should be given a sticker allowing for them to park either at a discount during the day or free altogether overnight.

Metering the beach improves the beach. It makes the beach cleaner.

This is what parking meters could do for Revere Beach.

We support a cleaner Revere Beach.

This is a way to insure that.

15 comments for “Meters on the Beach – Cleanliness is Priority Number One

  1. Carol in Revere
    February 18, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    I was appalled to read this column in today’s Forum. Your main argument is that metering Revere Beach would change the demographic of those using it. First, you should know by now that race, age, sex, religion, social status or wealth does not determine one’s respect for the environment or sense of civic pride and duty. Disappointing as it is, some people just don’t care. Second, there are no assurances whatsoever that parking meters will lead to a cleaner beach. You said yourself that the DCR has performed a miracle cleaning up the beach; so taxpayers are already paying for a clean beach. And third, putting meters on the beach is not going to change the demographic of those using it: many visitors access the beach from public transportation or live nearby and walk. I know: I live 2 blocks away. Parking meters will just cost a fortune to install, and then cause a nuisance for people who come to enjoy the beach.

    If the primary goal is to help clean up the beach and Revere, you should recommend readers to become more involved in civic-minded organizations such as the Revere Beautification Committee, volunteer to speak to elementary and high school students about litter and pollution of the environment, or lead others to pick up trash in the neighborhood or nearby business area. A wise man once said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world”.

    Revere Beach is the oldest public beach in America; it has been enjoyed by countless generations as it is free and open to the public. And it should remain so.

  2. Lostangeles09
    February 18, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    Really poorly thought out Editorial. Absolutely no Evidence to support their position. Where should we begin looking at all the wholes in this anectodal, and in my opinion, serverly biased piece of Editorial Writing? I disagree wholeheartedly with the premis. Anyone who thinks that meter money will somehow improve the quality of the beach envoirment is fooling themselves. At best, this idea would be a form of institutionalized racism and socio economic warefare against poorer people who may visit the beach. I have seen many well healed people from outsanding North Shore Communities throw out their Kellys Trash on the sand with as much impunity as those from the inner city. Paying a meter has nothing to do with this conduct. The two are unrelated and I defy the Editorial Writers to show otherwise.

  3. February 18, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    I’m not necessarily opposed to meters on the beach… Just because the beach is open to the public doesn’t mean that the DCR has any obligation to provide the public with a free place to put their car. Since Revere is so close to Boston, I’d personally like to see it become less suburban and car-oriented (especially the beach area that is fortunate enough to have good public transit).

    Having said that, I agree with the others that have commented that a link between a person’s cleanliness and their willingness to put money in a meter is fairly baseless. I would only support meters if there were some real guarantee that the money collected would be re-invested in the beach.

  4. Rguudkfjf
    February 22, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    the beach is and always was a dump,In the 60s and on the place was run down and littered with we recycle some what but lowlife druggies litter the beach with used needles,and the rest do not speak American.(and no ,i am not a bigot).

  5. Wendy Ratner
    February 25, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    I agree with every word of your comment Carol. This article is appalling in its form and function.

    I am shocked that someone was actually PAID to write this article. I grew up in Revere and I like to think that this city would be above including institutionalized classism/racism (implicit or explicit) in its arguments for any supposed improvements to public recreational areas, especially the keystone Revere Beach.

  6. ksseniya
    February 26, 2011 at 2:28 am

    yes, you are

  7. Ksseniya
    February 26, 2011 at 3:17 am

    What an appalling editorial.
    Installing meters on the beach may not be such a bad idea since we could really use some additional revenue. But doing so in order to “change the demographics” of the visitors?.. Somebody, pinch me! It is 2011, right?
    Demographics don’t include such categories as a nice person or a jerk, a clean freak or a slob. Demographics refer to age, gender, race, ethnicity, marital status, occupation, income, and some others. From the tone of the editorial, it is clear that demographics here refer to either income or race/ethnicity. Either way, it is pure, poorly disguised bigotry. I cannot believe the article was written by people who have enough education to be employed as “editorial staff” of anything!
    I would share some ideas on how to keep the beach clean, but I don’t believe that is the main concern of the authors.

  8. Anonymous
    March 3, 2011 at 2:09 am

    Not just that, but I can just envision the trainwreck which will become hundreds of hot-crowded-summer-day cars expiring on their meters, and either not towed away or else the towing and the cops adding to such a further, backed-up nightmare, that….forget it: OIR (Only In Revere)! 😮

  9. Patty
    March 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    This is a great idea! but why stop there?
    I grew up in Revere and enjoyed the beach in my childhood days, back then people used public transportation as well to come enjoy and destroy our lovely beach as they still do today, and parking meters wont do a thing to remedy that. This problem wont simply go away with the addition of parking meters as one might think, but is there another solution?
    Even though Revere Beach enjoys the status of being a public beach, is it also a national park? if not maybe it should be. At any rate Revere Beach is and always has been open to the general public and therefore the general public should contribute to maintaining it, and that means tax dollars should fund it. But with government funding being cut from every possible sector this is probably not likely to be a reliable source of revenue. Take a look then at what other cities and towns do that have a recreational resource, they charge people admission and parking. The people of Revere have had to bare the burden of keeping their beach clean for decades, while the general public uses and abuses their hospitality, so isn’t it time you guys changed that? Take a look at the other beaches along the north shore, they are gated off, so if you want to spend a day there you have to pay to park or even to walk in, and guess what? these beaches are clean! So I think Revere, you should drop that “public beach” status which is so overrated and do what everyone else does, build parking lots, and gates as well as meter the off street parking and charge people walk in a fee. This would also create new jobs, as well as add revenue and pay for cleanup and ultimately change the type of general public who come to visit.

  10. davidinchelseama
    March 25, 2011 at 1:04 am

    Wow. Who knew that the Revere Journal had access to a time machine, with which to locate writing staff? Apparently they set it for 1950.

  11. George Rotondo
    March 25, 2011 at 10:40 am

    I strongly disagree with the ideas of parking meters on the beach. Tax the people to enjoy Revere’s most beautiful and natural resource is something Paul Revere himself would be against.
    Additionally, how does one make the giant step that paying more to park translates into a safer environment or less “rift raft”, which will frequent the beach less? Moreover, most of the people that have been coined “undesirable/ rift raft” have made their way to Revere Beach via the MBTA not by vehicular mode of transportation. Yet the biggest question is will the revenue derived from meters on the beach be used to make the beach safer or more inviting to beach goers. John Henry the Revere City Clerk in 2009 did not think that it was worth the venture to place meters on Revere Beach. Yet the Revere Journal and its infinite wisdom think that parking meter will solve all the woes of Revere Beach. It also has full faith that DCR will grant waivers to Revere residents who live on the beach. That may be true, but what about the other 50,000 Revere residents that pay taxes, are they any less entailed to the same relief as people who live on the beach? Should the people who live in neighborhoods that abut the beach be given consideration too? I do not support parking meters on Revere Beach because we pay too much in taxes already. You may not agree with me, but you know where I stand.

    George Rotondo
    Candidate for Mayor

  12. March 27, 2011 at 10:37 pm


    I generally agree with you and I’m glad that you’re willing to challenge the good ‘ole boy network in this city, but I’m disappointed that you’ve bought into notion that MBTA access is responsible for many of Revere’s woes because it “brings in the undesirables”. That notion, like the racist/classist overtones expressed in this articles should have disappeared with a bygone generation decades ago. One of the things I would expect to find in a city leader is the ability to help change old notions like this, rather than feeding into them for political reasons.

    In 1970, what you said might be true, but it’s 2011 now and recent years have brought renewed interest in public transit. It’s no longer just a last resort mode of transportation for the “undesirables”. Most communities in the Boston area that are fortunate enough to MBTA access have really used their proximity to the T to their advantage (witness the revitalization of Porter and Davis squares in Somerville as well as many points on the south stretch of the orange line). I would hope that anyone serious about leading Revere in the future would be see the MBTA as one of our assets, rather than just another problem that we have to deal with.

    I live across from the beach, and I can tell you from first-hand experience that this idea that all of the “rif-raff” comes from the T is about 180 degrees from true. Most of the people throwing trash on the beach and making excessive noise _do_ drive to the beach and park their cars there. In fact, much of the noise comes from the overpowered sound systems in their cars. These people constitute a very small percentage of beach goers, but are large enough in number to be a problem. Do I think installing meters would change this? Definitely not. Unlike the Journal writers (who evidently learned everything they know about sociology from a 90 year old great uncle), I seriously doubt that there’s much correlation between a person’s ability or willingness to spend a few bucks to park and their behavior. I also doubt, however, that there’s much correlation between a person’s behavior and their preference for or dependence on public transit either.

    My understanding is that decisions about beach side parking are ultimately up to the DCR, but if I could influence these policies I’d personally be in favor of removing most of the beach-side parking and limiting parking on the other side of the Boulevard to Revere residents. Since Revere Beach _does_ have a public transit option, it would still very much be accessible to the public even if the majority of the street-side parking spots disappeared.

  13. Linlindada
    April 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    I live just up the road from the beach and I would love to see some meters; I for one am quite sick of seeing all that trash being thrown from parked cars all day on the beach or people who decide to take their time on the sand BUT leaving their dogs in their cars only to come back and have their dogs do their bussiness in their car and then removing the dog’s bussiness to the sand.

  14. Shardy2739
    May 29, 2011 at 1:33 am

    It’s English, you uneducated racist, not American !!!

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