Front page

The best thing Menino did for architecture, the change he deserves to be remembered for, isn’t a building or group of buildings. It’s the transformation, still in progress, of Boston from a patchwork of semi-isolated neighborhoods into a single whole city.

Wendy Maeda/ Globe Staff

architecture review

For urban design, Menino era scores highs and lows

Here’s the short story people will remember about this mayor and his impact on Boston’s architecture.

Stephanie Ruiz, left, comforted Nancy Garcia, whose mother, Aura Garcia, was crushed to death on the Andrew McArdle bridge.

Family seeks answers after woman dies on Boston bridge

The family of Aura Garcia was grief stricken a day after she was killed when the bridge closed on her.

Teachers Union says it didn’t know of PAC ad

The union said it was not involved in a massive TV ad buy on behalf of Martin Walsh by its national affiliate.

Some of the physician-candidates without mainstream backing say they feel emboldened by the success of Senator Rand Paul, an ophthalmologist from Kentucky, and other Tea Party favorites who have come to power in recent elections.

Physician-candidates running against health care law

More than 30 medical doctors are running for Congress, at least 24 of whom are Republicans. They argue that they are particularly credible critics.

Neil Hayward said his big year has been an “epic personal journey.”

Cambridge man sets bird-watching record

Neil Hayward spent the final days of 2013 looking for a single bird. When he spotted a Great Skua, he set a North American record of 749.

The Nation

Physician-candidates running against health care law

Some of the physician-candidates without mainstream backing say they feel emboldened by the success of Senator Rand Paul, an ophthalmologist from Kentucky, and other Tea Party favorites who have come to power in recent elections.

By Noah Bierman

More than 30 medical doctors are running for Congress, at least 24 of whom are Republicans. They argue that they are particularly credible critics.

Boehner is said to back change on immigration

By Michael D. Shear

The House speaker has signaled that he may embrace limited changes to immigration laws.

‘Will not wait’ on inequality, Bill de Blasio tells New York

Bill De Blasio was ceremonially sworn in as the 109th mayor by former president Bill Clinton Wednesday. With them were De Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, and children, Chiara and Dante.

By Thomas Kaplan

De Blasio’s remarks suggested that the focus he gave to inequality during the campaign was not rhetoric.

The World

Rebels seize portions of strategic South Sudan city

By Nicholas Kulish

Rebel forces Wednesday seized parts of Bor, giving them a strategic foothold for a possible march toward the capital.

Palestinian ambassador in Prague killed in blast

By Karel Janicek

Ambassador Jamal al-Jamal was killed when he opened an old safe that hadn’t been touched for 20 years.

Lebanon arrests head of Al Qaeda-linked group, reports say

By Anne Barnard

Majid bin Muhammad al-Majid was taken into custody just three days after Saudi Arabia pledged a $3 billion aid package to the Lebanese army.

Editorial & Opinion

Mike ross

The path of most resistance

By Mike Ross

A dispute in Harwich is threatening access to a seaside location where beach-goers have gone for decades.

JOAN VENNOCHI

Make Boston hip, but keep its spirit

By Joan Vennochi

Boston is trying to create a liberated, but politically correct, city on a hill, but it’s a random and unfocused effort.

NICHOLAS BURNS

Obama’s 2014 foreign-policy challenges

A student at Cairo University stands near a burning police vehicle during a demonstration Dec. 1 in support of a fellow student who was killed in clashes with Egyptian security forces.

By Nicholas Burns

From Russia to the Mideast to Asia, President Obama faces a daunting foreign agenda this year.

Metro

Cambridge man sets bird-watching record

Neil Hayward said his big year has been an “epic personal journey.”

By Bryan Marquard

Neil Hayward spent the final days of 2013 looking for a single bird. When he spotted a Great Skua, he set a North American record of 749.

Teachers Union says it didn’t know of PAC ad

If Boston voters had known the national teachers union was spending so much for Martin J. Walsh (right), pundits say, it could have helped John R. Connolly in the election.

By Wesley Lowery

The union said it was not involved in a massive TV ad buy on behalf of Martin Walsh by its national affiliate.

Family seeks answers after woman dies on Boston bridge

Stephanie Ruiz, left, comforted Nancy Garcia, whose mother, Aura Garcia, was crushed to death on the Andrew McArdle bridge.

By Meghan E. Irons

The family of Aura Garcia was grief stricken a day after she was killed when the bridge closed on her.

Business

A123’s owner bids for bankrupt automaker

Fisker Automotive once used A123 System’s advanced batteries in one of its models.

By Erin Ailworth

Fisker Automotive, a government-backed Calif. automaker, once used A123’s advanced batteries in its hybrid.

Software, Web firms may dominate 2014’s IPOs

Wayfair.com’s cofounders, Niraj Shah (left) and Steve Conine

By Michael B. Farrell

At least a dozen Boston area software and Web companies are poised to go public this year.

US merger deals rise 11 percent

By David Gelles

While global dealmaking was basically flat for a fourth year, volume in the United States was up.

Obituaries

Patricia Ryan, 75; was top editor at People, Life magazines

By Bruce Weber

Ms. Ryan started at Time Inc. as a typist in the secretarial pool and made a rare ascent in what was a male-dominated company.

Juanita Moore, Oscar nominated actress; at 99

Juanita Moore was nominated for best supporting actress in 1959.

Ms. Moore was a groundbreaking actress and an Academy Award nominee for her role in the classic weeper ‘‘Imitation of Life.’’

James Avery, 65; actor was patriarch on ‘Fresh Prince’

James Avery (left) played the family patriarch in the hit television show “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’’ in the 1990s, with Will Smith and Janet Hubert.

Mr. Avery laid down the law at home and on the job as the Honorable Philip Banks on the hit TV show “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.”

Sports

Harvard 73, Boston College 58

Harvard buries BC in men’s basketball

Harvard’s Siyani Chambers, right, reached for a loose ball in front of Boston College’s Lonnie Jackson in the second half.

By Julian Benbow

The Crimson ran out to an early lead and did not look back in the first meeting between the schools at Harvard since 1991.

Patriots’ secondary seems to be healing

McCourty (here, tackling Ravens running back Bernard Pierce) did not practice last week, and did not play in the regular-season finale against the Bills.

By Shalise Manza Young

Devin McCourty was back at practice and Aqib Talib said he is improving, as the team readies for its Jan. 11 playoff game.

patriots notebook

Bill Belichick not fazed by Patriots’ potential foe

Bill Belichick walked by defensive backs Logan Ryan (26) and Nate Ebner during Wednesday’s practice. Belichick wasn’t willing to make any predictions on this weekend’s AFC Wild Card games.

By Michael Whitmer

The Patriots coach has no prediction for whom his team will play after this weekend’s wild-card games.

G: Style

architecture review

For urban design, Menino era scores highs and lows

The best thing Menino did for architecture, the change he deserves to be remembered for, isn’t a building or group of buildings. It’s the transformation, still in progress, of Boston from a patchwork of semi-isolated neighborhoods into a single whole city.

By Robert Campbell

Here’s the short story people will remember about this mayor and his impact on Boston’s architecture.

Television Review

Persistent and consistent, ‘Community’ returns

From left: Danny Pudi, Yvette Nicole Brown, Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Alison Brie, and Donald Glover return for season five of “Community.”

By Sarah Rodman

After being fired from the sitcom after its third season — resulting in a patchy fourth — creator Dan Harmon returns to the show for season 5.

Movie REview

Juliette Binoche brings ‘Camille Claudel 1915’ to life

Juliette Binoche as the title character in “Camille Claudel 1915.”

By Peter Keough

Juliette Binoche puts in a harrowing performance in the title role of this stark story of spiritual conflict.

Globe North

Demanding courses don’t deter Endicott College scholar athlete

Lauren Todd on the soccer field for Endicott College.

By Dave Hicks

Lauren Todd’s college career both off and on the field, she said, produced skills such as time management, leadership, and the pursuit of excellence.

Health setback helped Salem State athlete focus on future

Lauren DiCredico getting ready to get back on the pitcher’s mound for Salem State softball this spring.

By Katherine Stephens

Forced to take time off from softball and field hockey because of a heart condition, Lauren DiCredico has been cleared to play in the spring.

Merrimack College athlete turns an injury into a career path

“I have been an athlete my whole life,’’ said Nicole Curtis, who just finished her collegiate sports career.

By Angie Sykeny

After spending time with an athletic trainer following an injury, Nicole Curtis was inspired to help others get back on the field.

More Stories

Suburban Diary

Saying goodbye to an era that could not be saved

By Steven A. Rosenberg

Across the Pond

Getting a jump on next year’s holiday shopping

By Steve Coronella

Lynnfield

Selectmen plan to prepare 2015 fiscal budget

By David Rattigan

North Reading

Food Pantry in need of donations

By Brenda J. Buote

Chelmsford

Financial Fitness Fair free, open to public

By Brenda J. Buote

Tyngsborough

Technical high school gets $89,000 grant

By Karen Sackowitz

Globe South

Co-op programs give more girls a chance to play hockey

Melanie McAleer of Whitman Hanson/Pembroke watches as Boston Latin Academy’s Rachel Wells makes a save at a game last month.

By Brion O’Connor

When Kristyn Alexander played ice hockey at Wareham High more than a decade ago, she had no choice but to join the boys’ varsity team.

Rockland sues state over arbitration plan

By John Laidler

The town asserted that a state agency exceeded its authority when it excluded a proposal to curtail sick leave for the local firefighters’ union.

New cranberry bogs proposed in Plymouth

By Emily Sweeney

A.D. Makepeace Co.wants to build a new type of cranberry bog near the Carver town line aimed at producing higher yields of the little tart red fruit.

Globe West

Large development proposed for Arsenal Street in Watertown

A rendering of the proposed Arsenal Street Development in Watertown.

By Jaclyn Reiss

The proposal would add 300 residential units and 37,100 square feet of retail and restaurant space to the area.

Safety concerns linger after Upton rail yard spill

By Calvin Hennick

A chemical spill at the Grafton & Upton Railroad has been cleaned up, but some residents say concerns about safety at the site linger.

High schools join forces for girls’ hockey teams

“At first it was a little weird,” Belmont High student Kendall Brown (center) said of  playing for a co-op team with rival Watertown.

By Tim Healey

A Watertown/Belmont co-op program is among several that gives more girls a chance to play high school hockey.