Having an impact on Massachusetts Housing Appeals Committee decisions as a witness

I have appeared as a witness at the Housing Appeals Committee four times, and each time there has been a positive outcome for building affordable housing, including the Medford-DIV Fellsway, LLC Decision. My insights have been focused on the nuances of zoning regulations and GIS, particularly regarding the calculations for the numerator and denominator of the Subsidized Housing Inventory (SHI) eligibility.

My testimony has involved detailed methodological considerations, such as the applicability of safe harbor provisions and the interpretation of the Guidelines for Calculating General Land Area Minimum. Each of the cases was different in terms of what factors drove the arguments. For example, in Medford it was required lot area per dwelling type; in Weston it was how group homes are considered; and in North Reading it was an understanding of directly associated area.

Close up of Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #1128, a public artwork in EOHLC’s lobby

CommunityScale’s record at the Housing Appeals Committee underscores our reputation as being able to provide research, analysis, and testimony that is rooted in a deep understanding of urban planning and housing regulation. In addition to the four referenced Massachusetts Housing Appeals Committee (HAC) decisions below, we have also worked with developers and municipalities who wanted a preliminary understanding of where a community stands in terms of safe harbor.

These documents can be accessed for more detailed information on the respective cases. Feel free to reach out with any questions about 40B General Land Area Minimum (GLAM) Safe Harbor, GIS analysis, or expert witness needs.