Good Job Watertown!

The Watertown Town Council recently voted to amend its Inclusionary Zoning Ordinance to increase the percentage of affordable housing that is required by developers of projects over 5 residential units. This means more affordable housing will be built in Watertown! See the full story in the Watertown TAB.

Inclusionary Zoning is a local ordinance that requires developers to contribute a portion of their units to be set aside as “affordable housing” meaning it must be affordable to households at or below 80% of the Area Median Income. Because it is a local ordinance town leaders have a lot of flexibility in determining what projects are required to contribute and how much that contribution will be. In Watertown, all projects over 5 units must provide 12.5% of their units as affordable housing. This allows the town to make progress on meeting the State’s Chapter 40B 10% goal while also providing reasonably priced homes for the area’s working families, disabled individuals and senior citizens.

Modifications to the Inclusionary Zoning Ordinance were first proposed last year as part of the Watertown Housing Production Plan crafted by the Watertown Housing Partnership with help from Metro West CD and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council. The Partnership begin their efforts to implement the plan earlier this year and step one was the modification of this Ordinance.

Kudos to the Watertown Town Council and the Watertown Housing Partnership members for their vision and commitment to affordable housing!

  • So glad to hear of this step forward. In my work as a pastor, I get calls and emails every week from people unable to afford to live in Watertown and nearby communities. This is a large, growing problem. Thanks to Metrowest for your grew work.

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