The first in a series of community meetings on state-mandated zoning changes that could create up to 2,301 affordable housing units in Andover is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday at Memorial Hall Library.
Andover submitted its six-page form outlining “action plans” to the state Department of Housing and Community Development by the Jan. 31 deadline as the initial step in complying with regulations aimed at increasing affordable housing near MBTA stations.
The plans were required of all 175 Massachusetts cities and towns with MBTA stations in an ambitious effort to meet former Gov. Charlie Baker’s goal of building 135,000 affordable housing units in Massachusetts by 2025 while increasing access to public transportation. DHCD will cut state funding for housing authorities in towns that fail to submit plans, which are the first step in the initiative.
The plans have already been divisive in several municipalities in the initial stages of trying to comply. While not required, towns and cities that do not complete the process — including a change to local zoning rules — could lose state housing funding.
Andover has received $6.3 million in state housing grants since Fiscal Year 2015. Only seven towns — Berkley, Carver, Holden, Marshfield, Middleborough, Raynham, and Seekonk — failed to submit the plans and are now considered noncompliant. Many towns have pushed back on the regulations.
Image: Town of Andover