The sailboats… the yachts… and the people soaking up the summer sun, it’s one of the most treasured and iconic places in our city. But it has a dirty and dangerous secret.

That is — until investigative reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan started asking tough questions. It’s tonight’s hank investigates.

Look at the slime!

Vivien Li, Boston Harbor Association: “It’s an absolute disgrace.”

Rotted wood, twisted unusable docks…

Vivien Li, Boston Harbor Association: “There isn’t another property on this waterfront that’s as unsafe as this property.”

Collapsed pilings, corroded metal, splitting planks.

Vivien Li, Boston Harbor Association: “It’s unbelievable.”

It’s the shipyard quarters marina near the Charlestown Navy Yard—and residents showed me it’s Boston Harbor’s dirty and dangerous secret.

Dave Alexander, Boat Owner: “It’s basically the nautical equivalent of a slum. It should be condemned.”

The splintery boardwalk, the yellow caution planks. Angry neighbors complain–why doesn’t someone fix this?

Terry Savage, Navy Yard Resident: It feels like everything is going downhill–it’s sad to see it happen.

And we found it’s been happening for a long time. Look–city and state inspectors have documented violations since 2010! Last summer, Mayor Menino called the conditions “deplorable” a “disaster” and “an outrageous hazard.” The state department of environmental protection ordered the owner to make repairs.

But the Boston Harbor Association told me–basically nothing was done.

Vivien Li, Boston Harbor Association: “It just keeps going on and on and on! People are going to get hurt at this site!”

So – who owns the marina? This man – Martin Oliner. He’s also the mayor–yes, the mayor of Lawrence, New York—a lovely little village—with a lovely little marina—on long island.

As for the Boston marina? He insisted—he’s working on it.

Martin Oliner, Marina Owner: “We haven’t ignored inspectional services, we haven’t ignored the city of Boston, we haven’t ignored anyone.”


Martin Oliner, Marina Owner: “There’s no place that says anything like that.”

We reminded him of the mayor’s “hazard” letter… and then he told us—he has a plan, a big plan, to make a new marina. He just hasn’t told the public about that yet.

Martin Oliner, Marina Owner: “We’ve acted responsibly within the parameters of a very large problem that needs to be remedied, and it can’t be remedied with chewing gum.”

But we’ve learned Martin Oliner could soon find himself in some legal hot water, the Massachusetts attorney general told us:

“We are aware of the serious problems with the Shipyard Quarters Marina and are preparing to take action to resolve those problems as soon as possible.”

The last we spoke to Oliner he told us he expects to have the most beautiful marina anyone can imagine in the next 12 months — we’ll keep you posted on that situation.

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