Red Sox president says to expect news on renaming Yawkey Way ‘in the next couple weeks’

"Probably in the next couple weeks we'll have some news."

(FOR SPOTLIGHT SERIES) BOSTON, MA- NOVEMBER 21, 2017- :  Yawkey Way and Brookline Ave at Fenway Park in Boston, MA on November 21, 2017. (It pays homage to former Sox owner Tom Yawkey, who kept his team all-white longer than anyone else, passing up chances to hire future Hall of Famers Jackie Robinson and Willie Mays along the way. No other professional sports franchise plays near a street named for such a racially divisive figure. ) CRAIG F. WALKER/GLOBE STAFF) section: spotlight reporter:
Yawkey Way and Brookline Avenue outside Fenway Park in Boston. –Craig F. Walker / The Boston Globe

The days of Yawkey Way appear to be winding down.

According to Red Sox president and CEO Sam Kennedy, fans should see movement to rename the controversial Fenway Park-adjacent street this spring.

“We’re still in conversations with the city so no new update right now but probably in the next couple weeks we’ll have some news,” Kennedy told on Monday, adding that the team has had to get a number of local stakeholders on board to file a formal petition for the name change with the city.

“There’s a lot of property owners and publicly elected officials who have to endorse the petition [to change the name] as well and then you submit it [to the city],” he said.


According to, Kennedy said he expects “movement” on the name change closer to Opening Day, which is April 3, than the All-Star break, which begins July 16.

Red Sox owner John Henry spoke out last August about his desire to rename Yawkey Way, telling the Boston Herald that he was “haunted” by the legacy of the team’s allegedly racist former owner Tom Yawkey, for whom the street was named in 1977. Henry also said he would like to see it renamed after retired slugger David Ortiz.

However, due to city rules, the street cannot be named for a living person because there are multiple property owners on the street. Any proposed name change would have to be approved by the Public Improvement Commission.

“There’s a provision that allows you to petition for a name of a living person if there aren’t other property abutters on the street,” Kennedy told reporters last month. “So living person is out of the question. So we’ve had a few different ideas, but we’re not quite there yet.”

Kennedy said at the time that there had been talk of changing the street’s name back to its original name, which was Jersey Street.


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