Medfield Attains Housing Certification6/1/2018
Through proactive implementation of its Housing Production Plan, Medfield successfully met its target to create affordable housing units that enable it to have Chapter 40B Housing Certification (Temporary Safe Harbor). In the first year after contracting with Community Opportunities Group to complete its Housing Production Plan, the Town established an Affordable Housing Trust, which was capitalized with a $1M bond commitment. COG has continued to work with the Affordable Housing Trust to establish guidelines, permit friendly 40B developments, and to develop zoning and disposition strategies for town-owned properties that are targeted to meet affordable housing needs.
The 2016 Housing Production Plan effort entailed updating and highlighting key market trends that demonstrate the town’s housing needs, and collaborating with a working group composed of representatives from various boards and stakeholder groups to identify and refine the list of potential sites and strategies. The final draft plan was adopted with strong endorsement by stakeholder participants, and was then submitted to the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) for approval.
Components of the housing production plan included a comprehensive assessment of housing needs, market trends, and existing conditions. Recommendations focused around identifying housing opportunity sites and zoning changes, and capacity-building strategies to facilitate mixed income development for a former state hospital property and other areas of town with development potential, as well as small-scale initiatives to create affordable housing within the context of existing neighborhoods.
With a HPP that has been approved by DHCD, the town can gain temporary safe harbor from undesired Chapter 40B development if it creates new affordable housing sufficient to meet annual targets until the town achieves the goal of 10 percent affordability. The town is continuing to move forward with efforts to implement several of the strategies identified in the plan.
Related News: Medfield Adopts Housing Production Plan, 11/5/16