ACTION ALERT: Support Affordable Housing & Smart Growth in Central Square

I’m writing to ask for your action to build a more diverse and sustainable Central Square. 

Right now the City Council and Planning Board are considering a major proposal from Normandy Partners/Twining Properties to build a mixed residential and commercial development that would add more affordable housing just steps from the Central Square T. 

A Better Cambridge has urged the City Council to pass zoning to create more housing along Mass. Ave, other major corridors, and transit centers in the city. We believe that zoning changes proposed by Normandy/Twining are a productive step towards address the challenges we face as a city -- encouraging our dynamic economy while creating enough housing to give families of all income levels the opportunity to live here. 

ABC is especially supportive of the following elements of the Normandy/Twining Proposal:

  • A commitment to affordable housing, with no less than 17% of the housing units set aside for low- and moderate-income residents;
  • A commitment to family housing, including 10% of all new housing units with three bedrooms;
  • A commitment to transit-oriented development, by building new residential units close to amenities, only feet from the entrance to the Red Line and the #1 bus;
  • A commitment to local and independent retailers, with a public market, 25% of retail space reserved for local businesses, and a promise of no banks;
  • A responsible strategy for parking, that will limit the number of cars associated with the project. 



1. Attend one or both of the upcoming City Council Ordinance Committee and Planning Board meetings to publicly testify in support of this proposal:

Ordinance Committee - Thursday, 1/22 at 5:30 P.M. in the Sullivan Chambers at Cambridge City Hall

Planning Board - Tuesday, 1/27 at 7:00 P.M. in the Second Floor Meeting room at 344 Broadway.

2. If you cannot attend the meetings, email the Ordinance Committee and Planning Board before the above meeting dates indicating your support for this proposal. Even if you can attend, consider sending an email to reinforce your support:

Ordinance Committee - Address to Vice Mayor Benzan and Councilor Carlone, Co-Chairmen of the Ordinance Committee - be sure to email [email protected] AND City Clerk [email protected] to get your message on the official record.

Planning Board - Address to Chairman Theodore Cohen and send it to [email protected] who will pass it along to the Chair and other Planning Board members.