A guide to help Gateway City schools capitalize on a major opportunity

The Gateway Cities Journal

This morning Gateway City leaders received hopeful news when the Joint Committee on Education unveiled a $1.5 billion plan to bring state aid in line with the resource needs of K-12 public school districts over a seven-year period. In the words of the State House News Service, Gateway Cities have been waiting 1,400 days for this announcement.

Reducing train fares to achieve equitable TOD

The Gateway Cities Journal

MassINC released a policy brief this week that is a “classic” in the sense that its main finding—many Gateway City residents can’t afford to ride commuter rail—is blatantly obvious. While this problem has been apparent for some time, we think now is the moment to seek a remedy. Transportation has risen to the top of the

Hearing that glorious swish

The Gateways Cities Journal

Down for nearly a decade, Gateway City real estate markets finally show signs of life. From Brockton to Fall River and Lynn to Worcester, private developers are unveiling plans for exactly the kind of mixed-use TOD projects these regional urban centers need to become 21st-century cities. However, as we’ve learned from previous real estate cycles,

Budgeting for the transformation of commuter rail

The Gateway Cities Journal

MassDOT’s Rail Vision team presented a long awaited set of scenarios for the transformation of commuter rail at a joint MBTA/MassDOT board meeting this week. Their analysis provides more information about what it would take to run trains every 15 minutes to urban centers all throughout the day. It also gave us a sense of

Remembering a true champion

The Gateway Cities Journal

Mayor Carpenter did it all Gateway Cities movement lost a beloved hero last week with the passing of Bill Carpenter. Leading the great Gateway City of Brockton since 2014, Mayor Carpenter earned well-deserved acclaim for his work advancing substance abuse treatment, combating family homelessness, and fighting for public education funding. This short list doesn’t do justice to Mayor Carpenter’s many achievements. Running a city is indisputably the hardest job

Growing support for regional ballot initiatives to fund our transportation future

The Gateway Cities Journal

The Governor’s Commission on the Future of Transportation envisions a high-performance regional rail system connecting urban centers across the Commonwealth to Boston’s talent, R&D, and global relationships. This strategy leverages existing commuter rail infrastructure to generate more balanced economic development throughout the state. However, it still requires a considerable investment. We will need to modernize the commuter

Wielding the Double-Edged Zoning Sword

The Gateway Cities Journal

The Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance released a new study linking the state’s housing crisis to zoning at a well-attended State House event last week. Amy Dain, lead author of the report, pointed to four ways zoning inhibits the housing market: height and density limits, ad hoc approval processes, mixed-use commercial requirements, and “edge city” land

From “collective breaking point” to collective victory

The Gateway Cities Journal

In 2013, Gateway City leaders worked with MassINC to develop an education vision. This blueprint articulated how they could take advantage of their many uniquely urban assets to build economically-integrated schools that provide all students with exceptional educational opportunities. Gateway City educators labored to fulfill this vision with an array of innovative programs, but time

The South Coast Rail opportunity sitting right before our eyes

The Gateway Cities Journal

At a MassINC event held in New Bedford earlier this month, Jean Fox, MassDOT’s South Coast Rail Project Manager, reported that construction to reestablish train service to the region is finally set to begin. You could hear the room full of leaders from Southeastern Mass breath a collective sigh of relief upon receiving the long-awaited news. But

House budget advances Gateway City neighborhood stabilization effort

The Gateway Cities Journal

The FY 2020 House budget released yesterday directs $1 million to MassDevelopment’s Transformative Development Initiative (TDI)-with $750,000 of that earmarked for neighborhood stabilization activities. This represents an important step forward (and a strong show of support) for a concerted effort to create a comprehensive neighborhood stabilization program for Massachusetts. With these funds, MassDevelopment could build

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