Webinars, Tutorials, and Slide Decks
Saturday, March 18, 2023
The following presentation was given at the March 18, 2023 Citizen Planner Training Collaborative (CPTC) annual conference.
Download the presentation: MBTA Communities 2023 CPTC Conference Presentation
Economic Feasibility Analysis Materials
Mixed-Use Development District Materials
Compliance Model Materials
3A Fact Sheets
Attorney General Advisory
On March 15, 2023, Massachusetts’ Attorney General Andrea Campbell issued an Advisory concerning the enforcement of the requirements imposed on cities and towns by Chapter 40A, Section 3A.
The law requires that an MBTA community shall have at least one zoning district of reasonable size in which multi-family housing is permitted as of right, and that meets other criteria set forth in the statute. Failure to comply with the law results in a loss of eligibility for the community, for certain funding programs.
The Attorney General’s Advisory states “All MBTA Communities must comply with the Law.” The Advisory further states that “MBTA Communities cannot avoid their obligations under the Law by foregoing this funding.”
In addition, the Advisory cautions that “Communities that fail to comply with the Law may be subject to civil enforcement action” and, “Communities that fail to comply with the Law’s requirements also risk liability under federal and state fair housing laws. The Law requires that MBTA Communities “shall have” a compliant zoning district and does not provide any mechanism by which a town or city may opt out of this requirement.”
The Attorney General’s press release and the text of the Advisory are available below.
Technical Assistance for Municipalities
Technical Assistance with Section 3A compliance is available from many sources, including the Community One Stop for Growth (Community Planning, Rural and Small Town Development Fund and Housing Choice Grants), and Energy and Environmental Affairs Land Use Grants.
Massachusetts Housing Partnership (MHP):
MHP Technical Assistance for MBTA Communities
MHP is currently offering free direct technical assistance from pre-qualified consultants to municipalities for activities directly related to compliance with the multi-family zoning requirement. Eligible activities will include siting and mapping the district, developing appropriate use and intensity requirements; calculating capacity yield, drafting zoning by-law/ordinance; and community engagement. Apply at MHP 3ATA.
Online Workshop Series for MBTA Communities
MHP will be offering a series of trainings during the fall 2022 on topics communities should consider when planning their multi-family districts. The working title is More than Compliance: Multi-Family Districts that Work for Your Community and will address related topics ranging from infrastructure basics to community engagement and messaging strategies. Registration details will be available soon on our website at MHP 3A-TA.
Regional Planning Agencies
We encourage communities to consult with your RPA staff during this process as well. District Local Technical Assistance is available from every RPA and is typically offered in the beginning of the calendar year.