Winter Hill Plan Implementation

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Photo of a meeting in Winter Hill.

The Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan was finalized in November of 2016. It highlights three key actions:

  1. Prioritize interaction and involvement with community members.
  2. Develop a pro-business environment by rejuvenating the Broadway commercial main street.
  3. Reconnect Winter Hill to the rest of the city, both physically and culturally.

Since the plan was adopted by Planning Board, the City has undertaken many efforts to pursue the goals outlined in the plan, including the Winter Hill in Motion project. Currently, the SRA is considering an Urban Renewal Plan to further support the implementation of the Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan.

Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan

From June 2019 through March 2020, City staff hosted meetings, 1:1 conversations, and office hours to explore whether the community would be interested in the City using eminent domain to take the vacant Star Market property and other nearby sites. The general consensus, from nearly a hundred participants, was yes.

As a result, City staff has prepared a Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan draft. Download the PDF of the draft here, or read a summary of what’s included here.

To become adopted, the Plan must be approved by four different bodies:

SRA

The SRA adopted the plan at their September 16 meeting. Comment letters can be read here.

Planning Board

11/5/2020 at 6:00pm: The Planning Board will discuss the Urban Renewal Plan and determine whether it is consistent with SomerVision. Register here.

City Council

Date(s) TBD: The City Council will discuss and hold a public hearing regarding the plan before voting on whether to approve the plan.

State’s Department of Housing and Community Development

Once the Plan is approved by the required local entities, the State reviews it to ensure it meets legal requirements.

How to Participate

There are many opportunities to weigh in on the Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan draft:

  1. Email comments for the SRA. The SRA has approved the plan.
  2. Attend upcoming meetings. Join the email newsletter list for updates as these meetings are scheduled.
  3. Email your Councilor, who may be voting on whether to approve this plan later in the year.
  4. If you have not already, sign up for our email list to get updates on this project.

Para mantenerse en contacto con este proyecto, únase a nuestra lista de boletines por correo electrónico o vuelva a visitar este sitio. Para obtener información sobre este proyecto, comuníquese con 617-666-3311 o por correo electrónico SomerVivaEspanol@SomervilleMA.gov.

Kreyòl Ayisyen: Pwojè sa se yon fason pou aplike plan ki genyen pou katye Winter Hill la. Pou entèpretasyon sou pwojè sa, tanpri kontakte 617-666-3311 oubyen voye on email nan: SomerViv@SomervilleMA.gov.

Português: Este projeto trata da implementação do Plano de Vizinhança de Winter Hill. Para tradução em português sobre este projeto, entre em contato com 617-666-3311 ou por e-mail SomerVivaPort@SomervilleMA.gov.

The Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan was finalized in November of 2016. It highlights three key actions:

  1. Prioritize interaction and involvement with community members.
  2. Develop a pro-business environment by rejuvenating the Broadway commercial main street.
  3. Reconnect Winter Hill to the rest of the city, both physically and culturally.

Since the plan was adopted by Planning Board, the City has undertaken many efforts to pursue the goals outlined in the plan, including the Winter Hill in Motion project. Currently, the SRA is considering an Urban Renewal Plan to further support the implementation of the Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan.

Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan

From June 2019 through March 2020, City staff hosted meetings, 1:1 conversations, and office hours to explore whether the community would be interested in the City using eminent domain to take the vacant Star Market property and other nearby sites. The general consensus, from nearly a hundred participants, was yes.

As a result, City staff has prepared a Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan draft. Download the PDF of the draft here, or read a summary of what’s included here.

To become adopted, the Plan must be approved by four different bodies:

SRA

The SRA adopted the plan at their September 16 meeting. Comment letters can be read here.

Planning Board

11/5/2020 at 6:00pm: The Planning Board will discuss the Urban Renewal Plan and determine whether it is consistent with SomerVision. Register here.

City Council

Date(s) TBD: The City Council will discuss and hold a public hearing regarding the plan before voting on whether to approve the plan.

State’s Department of Housing and Community Development

Once the Plan is approved by the required local entities, the State reviews it to ensure it meets legal requirements.

How to Participate

There are many opportunities to weigh in on the Winter Hill Urban Renewal Plan draft:

  1. Email comments for the SRA. The SRA has approved the plan.
  2. Attend upcoming meetings. Join the email newsletter list for updates as these meetings are scheduled.
  3. Email your Councilor, who may be voting on whether to approve this plan later in the year.
  4. If you have not already, sign up for our email list to get updates on this project.

Para mantenerse en contacto con este proyecto, únase a nuestra lista de boletines por correo electrónico o vuelva a visitar este sitio. Para obtener información sobre este proyecto, comuníquese con 617-666-3311 o por correo electrónico SomerVivaEspanol@SomervilleMA.gov.

Kreyòl Ayisyen: Pwojè sa se yon fason pou aplike plan ki genyen pou katye Winter Hill la. Pou entèpretasyon sou pwojè sa, tanpri kontakte 617-666-3311 oubyen voye on email nan: SomerViv@SomervilleMA.gov.

Português: Este projeto trata da implementação do Plano de Vizinhança de Winter Hill. Para tradução em português sobre este projeto, entre em contato com 617-666-3311 ou por e-mail SomerVivaPort@SomervilleMA.gov.

What questions do you have about the Winter Hill plan implementation? 

Q&A

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    Are the corner buildings (313 Broadway and 9 Temple) really necessary for the Urban Renewal Plan?

    2 months ago

    City staff believes the corner buildings are necessary in order to achieve the vision laid out in the Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan and to produce a project that will provide the community benefits residents have advocated for. However, it is possible that a concept for the site could be implemented in phasing, which could preserve the existing buildings for a little longer; this is something the community process can explore once the plan is approved.

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    Can we preserve the pharmacy use?

    2 months ago

    This will be a question for our community process to answer once the plan is implemented. We can request that a developer size their commerical space to be a compelling location for pharmacies or grocery stores, and we can explore site plans that phase construction to preserve the existing pharmacy for a few more years. 

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    What can the City do to support renters and businesses in Winter Hill?

    2 months ago

    The City already provides numerous supports to renters, including distributing $1.5M of funding to local nonprofits to support rental assistance for low- and moderate-income households as recently as May. The Office of Housing Stability is also available to provide assistance to tenants facing housing instability (for assistance, call 617-625-6600 ext. 2581).

    For businesses, the City provides technical assistance programs including coaching with experts in multiple languages. This Summer, the City also provided direct grants to businesses affected by COVID.

    While these initiatives see positive outcomes, the City is always seeking more effective strategies to support our residents and businesses throughout the city and in Winter Hill.

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    What are the affordable housing requirements and opportunities on the site?

    2 months ago

    All of the redevelopment undertaken as a part of this plan must meet existing Inclusionary Housing policies, which require that any building over 18 units must have 20% of these units be affordable. 

    Through the community process, we can explore increasing the share of affordable units. We will work with real estate experts to quantify different community priorities, including open space, building height, and affordable housing, and use this information to discuss what trade offs we're willing to make as a community.

    The plan proposes conveying one of the vacant Sewall Lots (D2) to a mission-driven affordable housing developer. That developer would have to meet our minimum Inclusionary Zoning requirements, but may be able to build a higher share of affordable units depending on funding sources and financial feasibility.