Needham Housing Plan 2021

Needham Housing Plan

The Town of Needham has not had an approved Housing Plan in place since 2007, although it has made considerable progress in producing affordable housing since then, adding 894 new affordable units  and  surpassing the state affordability goal of 10%.  Despite reaching this threshold, the Town recognizes that significant unmet housing needs remain in the community, particularly in the context of unprecedented housing prices and the pandemic.  Consequently, the Town has determined that it should revisit its housing agenda by obtaining updated documentation on the local housing dynamic and preparing a Housing Plan to strategically address identified priority housing needs.

Working Group

The Planning Board has appointed a Working Group comprised of representatives from appropriate boards and committees to work with staff from the Planning and Community Development Department in overseeing community outreach and preparing the document.

Natasha Espada              Planning Board, Co-Chair

Jeanne McKnight           Planning Board, Co-Chair

Emily Cooper                 Citizen At Large

Ed Cosgrove                   Board of Health

Carol Fachetti                 Finance Committee 

Heidi Frail                       Select Board

Helen Gregory                Council on Aging

Oscar Mertz                    Citizen At Large

Marcus Nelson                Select Board

Michael O’Brien             School Committee

Ed Scheideler                  Housing Authority

Rhonda Spector               Citizen At Large


Meetings of the working group are open to the public and will be held on Zoom (at least to begin, they could move to in-person). Agendas and minutes will be posted on the website.

To receive updates on Housing Plan Working Group (HPWG) meetings subscribe to the Housing Plan Working Group Notify Me . You may also email planning@needhamma.gov using the subject line “Housing Plan Working Group".

On March 24, 2022, the Housing Plan Working Group held a Community Forum. You may view it here.


All meetings have been conducted over Zoom and are available to view on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/TownofNeedhamMA/playlists 

Prioritized List of Action Items developed by the breakout group participants at the Community Housing Forum

DRAFT Housing Plan

Presentation at the Public Education and Listening Forum held on January 27, 2022

Housing Authority Presentation to the HPWG on June 29, 2022

Past Housing Reports for Needham, as well as other relevant Needham documents


Needham Charter and General Bylaws

Needham Zoning By-Laws

Needham Zoning Map


Housing and Zoning Analysis, 2021

Demographic, Economic and Housing Profiles, 2019

Needham Affordable Housing Plan, 2007

An Assessment of Needham Housing Authority Residents: Assets and Opportunities, Jan, 2020

Needham Public Schools Demographic Study, 2018

West Metro HOME Consortium Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice 2021

Needham LWV Affordable-Housing Basics Oct 2021

Needham Inclusionary Zoning Analysis from the LWV Forum (2021)

 Needham Housing Authority Facilities Master Plan 2019

Emergency Rental Assistance Program Final Report

Other Housing Reports and Information

Glossary of Housing Terms

The State of Zoning for Accessory Dwelling Units, Pioneer Institute, 2018

Draft MBTA Housing Guidelines Jan 2022

MBTA Communities FAQ

Massachusetts Municipal Lawyers Association DHCD/MBTA Multi Family Zoning Guidelines

Link to webinar: Overview of Draft Zoning Rules for MBTA Communities Webinar