Valley Breeze: Draft law on affordable housing offers incentives

PAWTUCKET - Preliminary drafts of the city's new affordable housing ordinance do not include a mandate for a minimum of 10 percent affordable units within the Conant Thread district surrounding a coming new train station, says Councilor Terry Mercer.

Mercer told The Breeze significant progress has been made on what has been a controversial issue and he expects an ordinance to be ready to send to the full council by its first meeting in August. There are a number of kinks to still work out during one more planned workshop, he said.

The latest proposal addresses Councilor Meghan Kallman's particular concerns about the “secondary creep” of gentrification, or forcing out of residents due to higher rents, in neighborhoods abutting the train station district, said Mercer.

The councilman said there will be a quarter-mile overlay district running outside the Conant Thread district, creating incentives to add affordable units.

City Planner Sue Mara said that district is proposed as the “Neighborhood Stabilization District,” which would accomplish two things:

• Create an overlay zone where projects that include affordable housing would receive density increases as well as some dimensional flexibility.

• And allow in-law apartments by right for single-family and two-family homes.

To view the complete article, visit The Valley Breeze

Courtesy of The Valley Breeze

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