It’s a Nice Day for a Tent City


Photo courtesy of Peter H. Dreyer

When walking through Copley Square, it’s not easy to miss the Tent City Apartments on Dartmouth Street, but did you ever stop to wonder how it got its somewhat unusual name?

It was actually named in memory of the Tent City built by the Back Bay community in the 1960’s in response to the urban renewal plans of the Boston Redevelopment Authority.

These plans caused mass displacement of poor tenants with no relocation as their homes were bulldozed to make space for a parking lot.

To peacefully fight for the inclusion of affordable housing in the urban renewal plans, displaced residents pitched tents for four days over the location of the parking lot, which earned them important media attention.

Now, the Tent City Developments stand in place of the parking lot and house several hundred mixed-income families. The name is meant to remind Bostonians of the impact they can make when they work together towards a common goal.


If you want to work with the Boston Cares Community to help those in need of food and shelter:

We want to know:

What cause would you pitch a tent for?