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MHP's technical assistance for MBTA communities is part of its Complete Neighborhoods Initiative, which supports the Baker Administration and state legislature's efforts to build more multifamily housing near transit, jobs and services. The initiative consists of:
The following explains each part of this initiative:
This program will support MBTA communities seeking to comply with the new provision in the $262 million Economic Development Bond Bill of 2021. The bill included modifications to the state's zoning act (Chapter 40A, Section 18), adding a new section (3A) which directs 175 MBTA communities to adopt zoning where multi-family housing is permitted by right.
Since then, the state has developed draft compliance guidelines. Released on Dec. 15, 2021, the guidelines are based on the principle that communities that benefit from having access or proximity to public transit should “provide the opportunity for multi-family housing around these assets at a scale, density and character consistent with the community’s planning goals.” The draft guidelines will be open for public comment through March 31, 2022.
To support community understanding and compliance, MHP's will provide technical assistance for MBTA Communities, in collaboration with Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.
The 3A-TA program components will include:
MBTA zoning requirement resources from Mass.gov
Tools for planners
Zoning & Transportation
Discussion & commentary
To complement the new MBTA communities zoning requirement and to promote the development of walkable neighborhoods across the Commonwealth, MHP is offering The Complete Neighborhoods Partnership. This program concentrates technical assistance, resources, and investments within designated districts over multiple years to support the creation of mobility-rich, mixed-use, mixed-income neighborhoods. It is available to all communities in the Commonwealth.
Budget and Schedule: The program will select up to 12 communities to receive up to $150,000 each in technical assistance for a total of $1.8 million over a five-year period of the program. Six will be selected in 2022 and six in 2023. Services will be performed by MHP staff and/or third-party consultants. No direct funds will be awarded to selected communities.
Applications now open: The application period is now open for 2022. MHP will be accepting applications until Friday, April 15. In 2022, MHP will be seeking up to six communities or regions to receive targeted, long-term assistance through the Complete Neighborhoods Partnership Program. To apply, download the application.
FAQ: On March 31, we published a Complete Neighborhoods Partnership FAQ with responses to questions we received since the application process began.
Selection Process: Applications will be conducted on a competitive basis. Communities will have up to four weeks from the date the call for proposals is issued to submit an application online. During this period, the program manager will be available to answer questions about the program and the application process.
Applications will be evaluated by a committee consisting of state and quasi-public agencies who are involved in housing and economic development policies and programs. Award decisions will be guided by the applicant community’s economic conditions, demographic profile, development opportunities, local capacity, readiness to proceed, and impact of COVID-19.
Eligible Uses: Funds can be used for predevelopment, policy development, community engagement, or financial analyses. MHP Community Assistance staff will provide support throughout the program.
Post Selection: Following award announcements, primary contacts of awardees will work with MHP’s program manager to execute memoranda of agreement. Each community will identify key stakeholders to assemble a local partnership, which will serve as the steering committee for grant activities. The program manager will work with each partnership to develop a work plan for the grant period (2.5 years).
More information: Contact MHP Senior Development Manager Christine Madore at email@example.com.
The economic development bill included a $50 million allocation to “support the creation of low-income and moderate-income housing in close proximity to transit nodes.”
MHP is working in collaboration with DHCD to review eligible developments and make funding recommendations based on the goals of the enabling act, the Complete Neighborhoods Partnership and other transit-oriented development principles. For more information, contact MHP Director of Lending & Chief Credit Officer Megan Mulcahy at firstname.lastname@example.org.