From the Councilor: Chain Store Zoning Legislation, Luxury Housing Concerns, Planning for East Boston

September Newsletter from City Councilor Lydia Edwards:

The diversity of our neighborhoods is a blessing – as we wrap summer and turn into fall, I’ve been fortunate to join events celebrating the Italian, Mexican, and Salvadoran communities among others, congratulate new citizens on finishing their journey, and meet with constituents about issues ranging from rats to redevelopment plans. 

At City Hall, I’ve been advocating for changes to housing and economic policy, planning educational sessions for residents, and scheduling hearings and working sessions on a number of topics. 

Earlier in the year, I held a hearing on housing speculation. I remain deeply concerned about speculation in the real estate market, and a recent study by the Institute of Policy Studies suggests that luxury units going up in Boston are more like trades on the stock market than homes.

While these taller developments do create funds through our linkage program and inclusionary development policy, it’s critical the city ensure that units going up are actually housing Bostonians. We’ll be holding additional meetings to address issues of transparency in the housing market and examine whether there is a role for the city to intervene.

Finally, I am thrilled by the wave of candidates in Boston and elsewhere – progressive candidates, women and people of color winning elected office. It’s critical we get out the vote for our general election on November 6!

Topics in this month’s newsletter include:

  • Chain store zoning legislation.
  • North End feasts & processions photos.
  • Councilor Edwards’ interview with WGBH Boston on luxury housing units serving the wealthy.
  • Universities’ voluntary contributions in lieu of taxes.
  • Upcoming working session on planning and zoning for East Boston.

Read more about these topics and see upcoming community meetings in the full newsletter.