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Chelsea Comprehensive Housing Analysis & Strategy

Chelsea, MA

​​Chelsea, a dense inner suburb across the harbor from Downtown Boston, has witnessed a period of substantial reinvestment and growth, with redevelopment taking place on a large scale across residential, commercial, office, hotel, and industrial uses. Together with investments in regional transportation improvements and Chelsea’s proximity to Boston, the City’s own efforts to strengthen its neighborhoods and downtown have made Chelsea attractive to developers. Among the future challenges for Chelsea will be balancing the continued need for affordable, good-quality housing at prices that are within reach for Chelsea's existing residents, while still allowing for new investments that will continue to bring market-rate housing to the City.

Chelsea commissioned a comprehensive housing analysis and strategic plan to assess the City’s existing housing stock and demographic trends, and to address affordable housing needs in the community. The overall goal of the housing study was to conduct an independent assessment of housing conditions to help formulate priorities, policy options and alternatives, and future land use and zoning decisions related to housing,
as well as to provide advice on how to allocate limited local, state, and federal resources.

The Housing Strategy outlined several short-term recommendations that could help the City reduce displacement of existing residents, and to take steps toward providing
housing at price points more in line with Chelsea’s traditionally lower median household income. The Housing Trust and City Council worked together on prioritizing elements of the strategy and putting them into practice in the years that followed.