- Business Improvement Districts are special districts in which property owners vote to initiate, manage and finance supplemental services or enhancements above and beyond the services already provided by their local city or town governments.
- The Smart Growth Zoning and Housing Production Act, more commonly referred to as Chapter 40R, encourages mixed-income housing production in smart growth locations by providing flexible funding to municipalities that establish zoning overlay districts that satisfy certain minimum thresholds pertaining to location, residential density and affordability.
- Chapter 40S serves to reimburse cities and towns for the additional costs of educating new school-age children in smart growth districts. The combination of 40R and 40S now tops the menu of choices available to communities seeking more efficient, fiscally stable growth.
- The Citizen Planner Training Collaborative provides local planning and zoning officials with tools to make effective decisions regarding their community's current and future land use.
- The Commercial Area Revitalization District program (CARD) assists communities with older downtowns or commercial centers to channel private and public investment into these targeted areas in order to redress the economic decline and physical deterioration that accompanies disinvestment. The Division of Community Services approves and helps municipalities develop and implement CARD plans.
The legislation directs DHCD to develop a process for certification and to annually report to the legislature a list of certified CDCs and a summary of programs, initiatives or partnerships operated by EOHED that support CDCs.
- The Community Preservation Act is a tool for communities to preserve open space, historic sites, and affordable housing. The Community Preservation Act is statewide enabling legislation to allow cities and towns to exercise control over local planning decisions, and provide new funding sources.
DHCD is offering additional incentives to municipalities that adopt zoning districts promoting the Commonwealth’s strong interest in smart growth and housing for working families of all incomes. For purposes of this policy, these zoning districts will be called “Compact Neighborhoods.” This new tool complements Chapter 40R, the Commonwealth’s Smart Growth Overlay District statute.
- Every five years, DHCD is required to produce this plan for HUD detailing how Massachusetts will use the Community Development Block Grant, HOME Investment Partnership, Emergency Shelter Grant, and Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS funding to advance housing and community development goals.
- Economic Development Industrial Corporations program provides technical support for local, quasi-public corporations that implement economic development projects.
- Executive Oder 418 planning funds were offered to all Massachusetts communities to help link housing with economic development, transportation, and open space and resource protection.
- The mission of DHCD is to be a leader in creating housing choice and providing opportunities for inclusive patterns of housing occupancy to all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of income, race, religious creed, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, ancestry, familial status, veteran status, or physical or mental impairment.
Resources and tools are available to help Gateway Cities actively participate in, and contribute to, the Commonwealth’s overall economic success and to take advantage of their distinctive ability to be desirable locations for innovators, entrepreneurs and businesses and places where people with choices choose to live.
- The HDIP is designed to increase residential growth, expand diversity of housing stock, support economic development, and promote neighborhood stabilization in designated Housing Development Zones within Gateway municipalities.
- The primary mission of the Massachusetts Downtown Initiative is to make downtown revitalization an integral part of community development in cities and towns across the Commonwealth.
- Approval criteria for MGL Chapter 184, Section 32 (The Affordable Housing Restriction)
- The Peer-To-Peer Technical Assistance Program provides small grants to municipalities for short-term problem solving or technical assistance projects.
DHCD has a total of $600,000 in PATH funds available to assist municipalities to identify and implement strategies that will increase the production of multi-family housing.
- Priority Development Fund to help communities undertake strategies that will serve to increase housing production. The goal of the PDF Planning Assistance funds is to increase the supply of housing in the Commonwealth by encouraging community-based planning that will lead directly to housing production.
- The Bureau of Relocation acts as the central clearinghouse on state and local projects that cause displacement. Any resident or business that has been displaced by a state funded project may be eligible for assistance.
- Smart growth makes efficient use of land, fully utilizes urban services and infrastructure, promotes a wide variety of transportation and housing options, permanently preserves critical natural resources, and protects architectural and environmental character through compatible, high quality, and environmentally-sensitive development.
- The Urban Center Housing Tax Increment Financing Program (UCH-TIF) is established under M.G.L. Chapter 40, Section 16 to encourage increased residential growth, affordable housing and commercial growth in urban and commercial centers.
- Urban Redevelopment Corporations are private, limited dividend entities authorized by statute to undertake residential, commercial or industrial projects in areas, which are considered to be substandard, decadent or blighted open areas.
- Urban Renewal projects help municipalities redevelop deteriorated areas by providing the economic environment needed to attract and support private investment.
- Resources in this section, including annotated versions of The Zoning Act and Municipal Planning & Subdivision Control Law and The ANR Handbook (Approval not Required Plan), will aid planning boards, zoning boards of appeals, other municipal officials, and interested residents in the area of zoning and land use.