Safety, Wellness Improvements Shine in Burkis Square

Safety, Wellness Improvements Shine in Burkis Square

Prepared by Courtney Thraen and Evan Robertson of Downtown Framingham, Inc. with data contributions from the Framingham Police Department and Framingham Fire Department

October 11, 2019

Framingham Police Department Deputy Chief Lester Baker (third from left), smiles as he leads his officers, including Downtown Beat Officer, Paul Dunkin (far right), at the Downtown Oktoberfest on October 5, organized by Downtown Framingham, Inc.’s Executive Director, Courtney Thraen (center).

Framingham Police Department Deputy Chief Lester Baker (third from left), smiles as he leads his officers, including Downtown Beat Officer, Paul Dunkin (far right), at the Downtown Oktoberfest on October 5, organized by Downtown Framingham, Inc.’s Executive Director, Courtney Thraen (center).

Click to enlarge

In strong partnership with and through the active leadership of the Framingham Police Department and local service agencies, Downtown Framingham, Inc. marketed a wellness and safety campaign this summer to support businesses, residents, and local shoppers in Burkis Square, an area unofficially bounded by Waverly Street to the north, Claflin Street to the south, the Framingham MBTA Station to the west and South Street to the east. 

Downtown Framingham, Inc. (DFI) gathered data on police calls and ambulance calls to compare trends in the month of July 2018 and in the month of July 2019. DFI will soon gather and release August trends in 2018 and 2019.

Without research findings of statistical significance, no causal attribution can be stated. However, it is clear that a confluence of kindness, positive attention, and strategic efforts delivered these results,” said Courtney Thraen, Executive Director of Downtown Framingham, Inc.

Call addresses include: 20 Irving Street, 430 Waverly Street, Hollis and Irving streets intersection, and 30 Hollis Street.

Call addresses include: 20 Irving Street, 430 Waverly Street, Hollis and Irving streets intersection, and 30 Hollis Street.


Call addresses include:  1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street,   39 Hollis Street ,  46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

Call addresses include: 1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street, 39 Hollis Street, 46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

Over 60 businesses and citizens contributed to the Burkis Square Betterment Project, funding two engagement workers that worked from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26 and August 19 to August 30.  The engagement workers worked closely with the Framingham Police Department as they developed relationships with local business owners and conducted meaningful conversations with local shoppers and passersby.  Furthermore, during these hot summer days, they helped ensure individuals remained properly hydrated.

Goals of the Burkis Square Betterment Project included a reduction in both police and ambulance calls to this area; throughout 2018, 146 total ambulances were called and 189 police calls were made to the focal area surrounding the Hollis and Irving streets intersection.   

Following the first two weeks of the engagement pilot project, Burkis Square businesses shared positive feedback witnessed through increased productivity and customer comfort.  In Burkis Square, 39 of 40 businesses are run by people of color, many of whom are women. 


Ambulance Call Data in July 2018 and in July 2019 in Burkis Square

The Framingham Fire Department provided call data for the addresses annotated under the respective bar graphs. Calls were listed by time, date, and location.

July 2018 Ambulance Call Map - Click to Enlarge

July 2019 Ambulance Call Map - Click to Enlarge

Call addresses include:  1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street,   39 Hollis Street ,  46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

Call addresses include: 1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street, 39 Hollis Street, 46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

* Call addresses include:  1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street,   39 Hollis Street ,  46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

* Call addresses include: 1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street, 39 Hollis Street, 46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, 112 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, 495 Waverly Street, 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets,

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there was 1 afternoon call and 2 evening calls for ambulances. The week of July 22, 2019, there were 2 morning calls, 2 afternoon calls, 6 evening calls for ambulances.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there was 1 afternoon call and 2 evening calls for ambulances. The week of July 22, 2019, there were 2 morning calls, 2 afternoon calls, 6 evening calls for ambulances.


Ambulance Calls by Street, Time of Day

Call addresses include:  1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street,   39 Hollis Street ,  46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, and 112 Hollis Street

Call addresses include: 1 Hollis Court, 5 Hollis Court, 15 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 27 Hollis Street, 30 Hollis Street, 37 Hollis Street, 39 Hollis Street, 46 Hollis Street, 49 Hollis Street, 51 Hollis Street, 57 Hollis Street, 64 Hollis Street, 73 Hollis Street, 75 Hollis Street, 80 Hollis Street, 85 Hollis Street, 105 Hollis Street, and 112 Hollis Street

Addresses include: 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets.

Addresses include: 2 Irving Street, 20 Irving Street, 22 Irving Street, 46 Irving Street, 75 Irving Street, 81 Irving Street, 90 Irving Street, and the intersection of Irving and Hollis streets.

Call addresses include: 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, and 495 Waverly Street.

Call addresses include: 430 Waverly Street, 438 Waverly Street, 448 Waverly Street, 450 Waverly Street, 464 Waverly Street, 478 Waverly Street, and 495 Waverly Street.


Burkis Square Ambulance Calls by Week and Street in July

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there was 1 afternoon call for an ambulance to Hollis Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there were 4 evening calls for ambulances to Hollis Street.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there was 1 afternoon call for an ambulance to Hollis Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there were 4 evening calls for ambulances to Hollis Street.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there were 2 evening calls for ambulances to Irving Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there was 1 morning call, 2 afternoon calls, and 1 evening call for ambulances to Irving Street.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there were 2 evening calls for ambulances to Irving Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there was 1 morning call, 2 afternoon calls, and 1 evening call for ambulances to Irving Street.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there were 0 ambulance calls to Waverly Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there was 1 morning call and 1 evening call for ambulances to Waverly Street.

*DFI Engagement Workers worked weekday afternoons from 12 pm to 6 pm from July 15 to July 26, 2019 (and 2 weeks in August 2019). The week of July 15, 2019, there were 0 ambulance calls to Waverly Street. The week of July 22, 2019, there was 1 morning call and 1 evening call for ambulances to Waverly Street.


Police Calls to Burkis Square in July 2018 and in July 2019

Data was provided by the Framingham Police Department for calls to 20 Irving Street, 430 Waverly Street, 30 Hollis Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection. Calls were listed by shift (day, evening, and mid) with corresponding reasons at associated addresses. Calls broken down per week in July were not available. DFI did not receive types of calls per street address. DFI only featured the most frequent call types for bar graph representations.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

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Police Calls to Burkis Square by Type

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.

Addresses include 20 Irving Street, 30 Hollis Street, 430 Waverly Street, and the Hollis / Irving streets intersection.


Downtown Framingham is a densely populated urban area, comprised of mixed-use structures that house a growing number of residents and small businesses.  Per Weichart data, this neighborhood’s population exceeds 8,000 people per square mile.  Moreover, at least 1,300 passengers embark at the Framingham MBTA station every business day.

Thank you to the more than 60 businesses and citizens who sponsored the Burkis Square Betterment Project, including the major sponsors shown below! Thank you to the many local elected leaders that supported this initiative, including Framingham State Representatives Jack P. Lewis and Maria Robinson.

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Downtown Oktoberfest!

The Second Annual Downtown Oktoberfest on October 5, 2019 drew over 500 people of all ages, including many families into Downtown Framingham and the Burkis Square neighborhood.

DFI is extremely grateful to everyone who spreads a positive perception of downtown and stands up for the thousands of wonderful, hard-working people and innovative businesses who make this area shine everyday and normally go un-credited.

Here are some photos of Downtown Oktoberfest taken by DFI Board Director and Photographer, Itala Keller of IK Images, located at 118 Union Avenue.

DFI Food and Drink Garden at the intersection of routes 126 and 135, just abutting Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

DFI Food and Drink Garden at the intersection of routes 126 and 135, just abutting Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

DFI Board Director Adam Blumer enjoying Burkis Square with family at Oktoberfest. Photo credit Itala Keller.

DFI Board Director Adam Blumer enjoying Burkis Square with family at Oktoberfest. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Families enjoying the Food and Drink Garden near Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Families enjoying the Food and Drink Garden near Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Chris Yerlig as the Copper Cowboy Mime at the intersection of routes 126 and 135 just adjacent to Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Chris Yerlig as the Copper Cowboy Mime at the intersection of routes 126 and 135 just adjacent to Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Charlie Rousseau’s Antique Cars Show at 430 Waverly Street in Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Charlie Rousseau’s Antique Cars Show at 430 Waverly Street in Burkis Square. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Caricature Time with Matt Berson at intersection of routes 126 and 135. Photo credit Itala Keller.

Caricature Time with Matt Berson at intersection of routes 126 and 135. Photo credit Itala Keller.

A little Eastleigh Farm Moo Bus ice cream frenzy in Burkis Square! Thanks to the DFI Volunteers who helped clean-up afterward! Photo credit Itala Keller.

A little Eastleigh Farm Moo Bus ice cream frenzy in Burkis Square! Thanks to the DFI Volunteers who helped clean-up afterward! Photo credit Itala Keller.

A young couple enjoys the colorful balloons in Burkis Square, compliments of Cristina’s Decorations at 62 Hollis Street! Photo credit Itala Keller.

A young couple enjoys the colorful balloons in Burkis Square, compliments of Cristina’s Decorations at 62 Hollis Street! Photo credit Itala Keller.