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Posted on: January 13, 2022

Join Us For a Public Education and Listening Forum on the Future of Housing in Needham

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The Needham Housing Plan Working Group, created late last year by the Planning Board, will host a Public Education and Listening Forum Thursday, January 27th to share information and solicit input from the community as the Working Group develops Needham’s next Housing Plan.

The forum will be held at 7 pm via Zoom and will begin with a brief overview of the basics of affordable housing as well as the history of zoning in Needham. Members of the public will be given an opportunity to share their views on the most pressing housing needs in Needham and ideas about how to best address those needs. 

Individuals who wish to offer comments but cannot make the forum can send an email to planning@needhamma.gov with the subject line “Housing Plan Working Group.”

The Working Group is hosting this forum in advance of conducting a Housing Needs Assessment, which will be presented to the public at a Housing Workshop in March. Following that workshop, the Working Group will develop a plan to strategically address identified priority housing needs in Needham. 

The last Affordable Housing Plan for Needham was released in 2007. Since then, the makeup of the community has changed significantly, with an expanding population and an accompanying increase in housing costs. Despite intensifying market pressures, Needham has made considerable progress in promoting greater housing diversity over the years with 1,410 state-approved affordable units included on the Subsidized Housing Inventory (SHI), representing 12.76 percent of its housing stock and surpassing the state’s 10 percent affordability goal. However, numerous unmet housing needs remain. The Working Group will develop a plan to meet those needs and will present the plan to the community later this year.

For more information on the Housing Plan Working Group and housing in Needham, visit the Working Group’s web page

 Members of the Working Group

Natasha Espada

Planning Board, Co-Chair 

Jeanne McKnight

Planning Board, Co-Chair

Emily Cooper

Citizen at Large

Ed Cosgrove

Board of Health

Laura Dorfman

Community Preservation Committee

Carol Fachetti 

Finance Committee

Helen Gregory

Council On Aging

Dan Matthews

Select Board

Oscar Mertz

Citizen At Large 

Marcus Nelson

Select Board

Mike O’Brien

School Committee

Ed Scheideler

Housing Authority

Rhonda Spector

Citizen At Large 

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