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MBTA community webinar series continues

Posted on November 16, 2022

BOSTON --- MHP's fall webinar series for MBTA communities continues, with the final one coming up on Nov. 30 on affordability in your MBTA district.  


The series – entitled “More Than Compliance: Multifamily Districts That Work in Your Community” – is part of MHP’s Complete Neighborhoods Initiative, which is supporting the state’s efforts to build more multifamily housing near transit, downtowns, jobs and services.

"We want to look at various parts of the compliance process for MBTA communities, explain it and talk about how communities through the state can think a little bit bigger and create developments that address broader communities needs, like better transit, climate and equity," said MHP Community Assistance Manager Claire Morton, who is planning this series.

All sessions posted

Videos for all sessions have been posted. In session 1, MHP Senior Development Manager Christine Madore explained the Complete Neighborhoods concept and how MHP is supporting three communities and two regions through its Complete Neighborhoods Partnership awards program.

Madore then moderated an expert panel discussion on efforts to create housing near transit. The panel included Alyssa Larose of the Franklin County Regional Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Patronicity Vice President Jonathan Berk, Salem for All Ages VP Patricia Zaido and Liz Murphy and Tom Skwierawski from the City of Fitchburg.

Session 2 focused on wastewater basics, with Joseph Peznola of Hancock Associates providing a review of the state sanitary code and how housing density impacts sewer disposal and water supply.

Session 3 emphasized how to plan, design, build, operate and maintain streets so that they offer safe access for all people who use various modes of transportation.

Session 4 on family-friendly housing was led by the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), the regional planning agency for the 101 cities and towns in Metro Boston.

Session 5 was on taking steps toward complying with the state's new zoning requirement for MBTA communities. Experts from the state Department of Housing and Community Development provided a step-by-step walk through of how to do an action plan, which is required for interim compliance with the new law (Section 3A of the state's zoning act.

Session 6 provided an overview on different types and styles of densities communities can zone for to comply with the new law.

Session 7 outlined the benefits of forming partnerships with adjacent communities and municipalities while pursuing zoning for multifamily.

Session 8 gave strategies on how to form coalitions to make the case for affordable housing and the types of organizations that can help compose an effective coalition.

Session 9 focused on site plan review, defining it, explaining its purpose and importance and steps for completing one.

Webinar Schedule

The series was scheduled to run for nine consecutive Wednesdays, from 12 to 1:30 p.m., through Nov. 16. A new session on affordability has been added for Nov. 30. 

  • Sept. 21: The Case for Complete Neighborhoods with Christine Madore, MHP. VIDEO
  • Sept. 28: Water and Wastewater Basics for MBTA Communities (Hancock Associates) VIDEO
  • Oct. 5: Complete Streets and Neighborhoods for MBTA Communities (MAPC) VIDEO
  • Oct. 12: Encouraging Family-Friendly Housing in MBTA Districts (MAPC) VIDEO
  • Oct. 19: Getting Started for MBTA Communities (DHCD & MHP). VIDEO
  • Oct. 26: Exploring Housing at Different Densities (Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District). VIDEO
  • Nov. 2: Siting Your District for Adjacent Communities (Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District) VIDEO
  • Nov. 9: Making the Case for Affordable Housing: Local Engagement and Narrative Change (Citizens' Housing and Planning Association) VIDEO
  • Nov. 16: Site Plan Review (Barrett Planning Group & KP Law) VIDEO
  • Nov. 30: Including Affordability in your MBTA District (MAPC; new date & registration link; rescheduled from 10/19)  

There is no cost to attend the webinars. For more information contact MHP's Claire Morton at cmorton@mhp.net.

This series is part of MHP’s Complete Neighborhoods Initiative, which is supporting the state's efforts to build more multifamily housing near transit, downtowns, jobs and services. Additional resources and trainings will be rolled out regularly throughout the law's two-year compliance period. All materials related to MBTA zoning and our Complete Neighborhoods Initiative are on the Housing Toolbox and also at www.mhp.net/mbtazoning

Read the final guidelines

On Sept. 8, the state held a webinar to provide an overview of the new law, which is Section 3A of the state's zoning act. The webinar covered key changes made from draft to final guidelines and a description of the compliance model that will be used to estimate multifamily capacity.

Watch the Section 3A Guidelines Webinar 

Download the Section 3A Webinar slides

Go to the DHCD web site for more information.