BASK IN A SKY-HIGH GARDEN Mayor Tom Menino expected fierce competition when he challenged developers to design a 1,000-foot tower. Instead, he only got Steve Belkin. No matter, because construction on Trans National Place will begin in 2008; the glass building is scheduled to open in 2011 and will, at last, give Boston a skyscraper worthy of a world-class city, with a rooftop garden to boot.
VIEW SOME NEW HAMPSHIRE TOWNS AS BOSTON SUBURBS It's not official, but one day not too far off, you should be able to travel here from Nashua or Manchester, New Hampshire, on a commuter train. (Right now, you have to hop on in Lowell.) The Granite State may still be affordable, but just wait until it becomes a true bedroom community.
RIDE THE T STRAIGHT INTO THE NEXT DAVIS SQUARE Somerville is already one of the country's most densely populated cities, and although eight train lines pass through it, only one stops there. A planned Green Line extension will take the T into the city's Union Square (promised to become hip like Davis). A second extension should add even more Somerville stops and end up in neighboring Medford. Once all this is completed, maybe by 2014, this blossoming city will be even more accessible.
SHOP AT A LUXURY WATERFRONT MALL It will look and feel like Copley Place when it opens in late 2008 or early 2009 only Waterside Place will have spectacular waterfront views. Will it ever be as easy to get to as Copley Place? Absolutely. There is already a Silver Line station at the site, and when Phase III of the Silver Line is completed, those buses that now run on Washington Street will join the sleek below-ground routes already running along the waterfront and to the airport.
ENJOY THE WALK TO THE SEA What was conceived 40 years ago by I.M. Pei is now becoming a reality. This three-quarter-mile walk will start at the Suffolk Courthouse Plaza on Beacon Hill, pass through City Hall Plaza and Faneuil Hall, cross the Greenway and continue out to the end of Long Wharf, where a new cafe will sit.
SEE A TRANSFORMED JACKSON SQUARE One of Boston's notoriously violent neighborhoods, Jackson Square in Jamaica Plain will be cleaned up thanks to new retail shops, a youth and family center, an ice rink, and affordable housing. Construction is scheduled to take place between 2008 and 2013.