The Board of Selectmen would like to invite you to attend their next meeting to be held on Monday, July 27th, to learn more about developing the town's Master Plan. We are seeking representatives from the community to be involved and work alongside the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission over a two-year period. In order to have a well rounded Steering Committee we will be looking for representatives from the following:
- Member of the Planning Board
- Member of the Board of Selectman
- Community member particularly concerned with housing
- Active and engaged senior or member of the Council on Aging
- Conservation interests/ conservation committee etc.
- Business interests
- Historic and cultural interests
- Civic organizations
- A member of the Town’s administration
- An active parent or member of the school committee
- Member of the Resident Advisory Committee
If you are interested please reach out to the Town Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org and feel free to attend the virtual meeting! Zoom information will be posted by Thursday, July 23rd.
Community leaders in the Town of Boylston value planning. CMRPC seeks to assist the Town in the preparation of an update to its 2000 Master Plan. While the Town has embarked on several planning processes, as indicated above, the benefits of updating a community master plan include the following:
- The process, in and of itself, encourages dialogue about a community’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
- The process engages a wide variety of community stakeholders in developing a vision, a set of aspirational goals, and objectives.
- A Master Plan assures that development is orderly and predictable.
- A Master Plan guides an efficient capital spending program.
- A Master Plan may result in a better bond rating by demonstrating prudent fiscal policies.
- Many State grant programs provide a “bonus” point for communities with up-to-date Master Plans.
- A Master Plan identifies short- and long-range actions and who is responsible for implementation.
- The process serves as a reference for boards to make clear, fair, and consistent decisions.
- A Master Plan allows the town to prepare for growth within the geographic region and within a set of demographic trends and changes.
A Master Plan is a statement of intent and is intended to serve a whole community, guiding its overall character, physical form, and evolution. It describes where, how, and at what pace a community wants to develop physically, economically, and socially. A Master Plan serves as a guide for local officials and Town Meeting members when they make decisions about zoning, budgets, and capital improvements. This “living document” acts as a guiding force for any planning that is to occur within the Town in the future. However, the plan and its recommendations do not automatically advance any specific item. Many of the topics and actions can, and should, be coordinated and implemented together.
In accordance with Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 41, Section 81D, Planning Boards are required to prepare a Master Plan for their communities. These roadmaps are living documents that must be updated periodically to reflect the evolving conditions and desires of communities. CMRPC can assist the Town in updating its Master Plan to reflect changes in community trends since 2000, achievements under the original Master Plan, and to establish new community objectives and action items. A Master Plan lays out a community’s vision for its shared future and creates a road map of goals and actions. It should be used as a resource and manual for Town officials in creating projects. The Master Plan should be used for assessing funding requests and evaluating the importance and priority of initiatives.
The Master Plan itself will not create or protect anything. Residents, volunteers, municipal employees, and other stakeholders need to organize, plan, commit, act and seek funding to ensure the future of this Town. Without action, the Town may change in unanticipated or undesirable ways. A Master Plan is a living document, and the Town’s thoughtful implementation of the developed plan will see its vision come to fruition.
The main topics of a Comprehensive Master Plan include, but are not limited to:
- Population and Housing
- Natural and Cultural Resources
- Open Space and Recreation
- Economic Development
- Town Services and Facilities
- Land Use
A Master Plan many include particular attention to a specific area. Some plans include more consideration of energy, technology, infrastructure, climate change, and other emerging topics. Most plans have an actionable implementation plan and are developed with a ten-year horizon.