Governor Charlie Baker and a host of partners on Wednesday awarded $5 million in capital grants to 28 communities under the Housing Choice Initiative and presented 14 communities with Housing Choice designations.
As part of the awards, Chelsea was announced for a $250,000 grant.
The City of Chelsea will use funding for a proposed capital project focused on pedestrian enhancements along Orange Street, directly adjacent to a new, neighborhood scale housing opportunity on two City owned parcels and to an existing Chelsea Housing Authority complex and other dense, residential dwellings.
The grant will help the City’s new program that enables the Affordable Housing Trust Fund (AHTF) to embark on developing vacant and City-owned lots – the first of such just getting started on Orange Street.
“We are grateful to the 78 communities that have earned Housing Choice Community designations and their ongoing commitment to building new housing and their promotion of best practices,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “As we continue to take steps to address our housing crisis, these capital and small-town grants paired with the Housing Choice zoning reforms signed into law in January will support even more communities be a part of the solution.”
The Housing Choice Community Capital Grant Program funds infrastructure improvements in those communities that have shown commitment to advancing sustainable housing production. The awards announced Wednesday will provide nearly $4.3 million to 19 municipalities.
Launched by Governor Charlie Baker in 2017 to increase housing production by empowering municipalities to lead on local development, the Housing Choice Initiative includes technical assistance, a community designation with access to capital grant programs, and legislation making targeted zoning reforms that he signed into law in January 2021. The initiative was introduced with the goal to support the production of 135,000 new housing units by 2025.
The Baker-Polito Administration has shown a deep commitment to increasing the production of housing across all income levels. Since 2015, the administration has invested more than $1.4 billion in affordable housing, resulting in the production and preservation of more than 20,000 housing units, including 18,000 affordable units.