Sanity could finally arrive on Wednesday in the long battle over the new skyscraper planned for the site of the old Winthrop Square Garage.

In all likelihood, the Boston City Council will clear the way for construction of the Millennium Partners project. That is an outcome that will cheer many residents, especially advocates of more funding for parks and public housing. But council approval, if it comes, will also frustrate critics of development who would see it as a retreat from a commitment to protect Boston Common and the Public Garden from encroaching development.

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