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BOSTON-A move by a transportation and turnpike official to wrest control of three key parcels on the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway that are earmarked for a winter garden may soon spark a battle with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society. The society has been charged with developing a Garden Under Glass on the site.

The society’s executive director, Thomas Herrera-Mishler, tells GlobeSt.com that the organization has no plans to surrender the parcels, despite a plan by John Cogliano, state transportation secretary and chairman of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, to remove the land from horticultural society control.

“I don’t think the Turnpike Authority should be allowed to step away from the commitment they made to the citizens of Boston,” says Herrera-Mishler. “It’s all just politics and not in the best interest of the city or its citizens.”

Herreara-Mishler says the three parcels were designated for development by the horticultural society more than 15 years ago under the original environmental permits that allowed for the construction of the Big Dig and are not under the control of either the Turnpike Authority or the state.

As GlobeSt.com reported, the Garden Under Glass project has been beleaguered almost from the start. In an October meeting with the Turnpike Authority, which is overseeing the construction of the 27 acre park, members of the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy recommended the horticultural society be removed from the list of site developers because it does not have the funding to construct the $7 million winter garden project.

Herreara-Mishler, however, says the group raised about $800,000 last year and has a $3 million commitment from the turnpike authority to build the Garden Under Glass project. The society also recently commissioned Halverson Design Associates of Boston, which designed Post Office Square, to do the design work, he says.

Cogliano could not be reached for comment in time for GlobeSt.com’s deadline.

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