How Boston is Addressing Affordable Housing

So how is Boston addressing affordable housing for the future – a few different ways from homeownership to rentals for those who need it most.

Known for its delicious baked beans, Fenway Park, and of course, The Boston Marathon, Boston is also a city that’s growing by leaps and bounds.

It is expected to have more than 759,000 residents by the year 2030 according to a report released by the city.

This means more housing will be needed, especially affordable housing for new residents who may not be able to afford homes in this diversified city.

So how is Boston addressing affordable housing for the future – a few different ways from homeownership to rentals for those who need it most.

On a city government page it states:: “In 2014, former Mayor Martin J. Walsh released Housing a Changing City: Boston 2030, a comprehensive housing plan designed to address the housing needs of Boston’s growing population. In 2018, a planned assessment found that Boston’s population was growing faster than expected, with 759,000 residents expected to live in Boston in 2030.”

The city reports in its 2018 Update of the Housing Boston 2030 plans it will create new goals for housing production, including income-restricted housing designed to be affordable for various incomes, plans for strategic growth to preserve and enhance existing neighborhoods, and other areas on preventing displacement, increasing homeownership, and equitable access to housing.

Referred to as HB2030 2018 and to reach its goal it will offer 69,000 new units of housing at a myriad of income levels throughout Boston. This plan includes around 16,000 new units of income-restricted housing and combined will bring Boston’s total number of income-restricted units to 70,000 by 2030.

The plans are on the right course as its housing plan has crossed the 30,000 unit mark, including 6,000 income-restricted units, according to an October 2020 report.

On March 4, the city also reported funding to support even more of Boston’s homeless and aging population with 198 units for individuals and families experiencing homelessness.

Mayor Walsh said in the report $34 million in new and recommended funding from the Department of Neighborhood Development, the Neighborhood Housing Trust (NHT), and the Community Preservation Fund to create and preserve 841 income-restricted units of housing in Allston, Back Bay, Dorchester, Fenway, Hyde Park, Jamaica Plain, Mattapan, Roxbury, and the South End will be created. 

In keeping with climate change and sustainability, new construction will use zero emissions to mimic Mayor Walsh’s Carbon Free Boston guidelines.  

The new funding will create 608 new income-restricted housing units and preserve 233 units of existing income-restricted housing units.

These properties will be available for homeownership as well as rentals and include housing units for previous homeless households, adults in substance use recovery, and seniors.  

Additionally, more funding for affordable housing is in the works with Mayor Walsh and the City of Boston Community Preservation Committee announcing recommendations of 67 projects, totaling over $25.5 million in grants through the Community Preservation Act current funding round.

Visit here to see the breakdown in various neighborhoods in the Boston area that will be gaining more affordable spaces via the above funding for residents by 2030.

You can also learn more about Boston’s various affordable housing types here.


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