“I am a retailer – Cause to Paws – at 1386A Beacon Street – between Winchester and Centre. I am not sure if you are aware of this or not but the smell associated with the ongoing construction has become quite offensive and many of my customers and passerbys are beginning to complain loudly – commenting on their avoidance of the area.

I usually leave my door open as an incentive to people to come in as well as to get fresh air in the store – now this is impossible.

I believe the smell is coming from the soil that has been placed in the soon to be paved/widen sidewalk area – it actually smells as if you on a farm – a manure odor which is quite noticeable. I am not sure there is anything that can be done now but for future reference for the areas of construction, I think this should be taken into consideration – it is definitely hurting business in addition to the other issues associated with the construction.”


Terry Meyers
Cause to Paws
1386A Beacon Street
Brookline, MA 02446


“Thanks for the email. You are not alone in identifying the odor associated with the soil along Beacon St outbound between Centre and Winchester.

Under this contract, the Town is using a Structural Soil composition beneath sidewalks and at tree pits in commercial districts that is intended to facilitate the growth of trees in this challenging climate of an urban transportation corridor. The composition of the Structural Soil does include Organic Materials (Compost and/or Manure) and Fertilizers, both of which can produce unbecoming smells on sultry days, as was the case during that particular installation.

While the Washington Sq district received the same Structural Soil composition, it was installed in a November climate, without the heat and humidity.

I have addressed this issue with the consulting Landscape Architect, who confirms these same thoughts.”

Thanks for your query and concern,

Bill Smith

William L. Smith, RA, CS
Construction Project Coordinator
Department of Public Works
Engineering/Transportation Division
870 Hammond Street
Brookline, MA 02467
Tel: (617) 264-6480
Fax: (617) 264-6450