Scenic imagery

GA Blog

Showing blogs: 16 of 765

11.13.19 Gloucester City Councilors in Suit over Special Permit Decision

A recent filing in Land Court attempts to annul a Gloucester City Council decision to deny a special permit to developer Paul Bevilacqua on the property of 116 East Main St in Gloucester.  The special permit was requested in order to develop two buildings on the site, each with 4 condo units, instead of the current approved use as a three-family.

The development proposal did have approval from the Zoning Board of Appeals and the City Council’s Planning and Development subcommittee.  In the final vote of 5-3 against, two of the three Planning and Development subcommittee members switched their previous vote after a public hearing where a majority speaking opposed the project.

The property is currently under purchase and sale and Land Court will hear the filing on December 5th. If annulled this would be the second time in recent months that a City Council special permit decision is thrown out.  In October, an approved permit on Wingaersheek Rd was successfully challenged by a neighbor.

For more on the court case and to see the filing itself you can read the article in the Gloucester Times here.

contine reading button

11.11.19 HUD sends letter on unreliable service animal documentation

Last week, HUD Secretary Ben Carson sent a letter to Joseph Simons, chairman of the Federal Trade Commission, and Andrew Smith, director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection, voicing concern over websites that offer “unreliable and unnecessary” assistance animal documentation.

Per the Fair Housing Act, it is illegal for housing providers to refuse to grant reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.  This allows for the acceptance of a service animal even though a pet restriction policy would otherwise prohibit the animal.

The concern voiced is that these websites mislead disabled individuals by representing that the documentation in which they sell is required when many times no documentation may be needed at all.  Secretary Carson states one example: “a housing provider should not request documentation if an individual is seeking to keep a dog and it is readily apparent that the dog is trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.” A secondary concern is also raised that able-bodied individuals may be able to buy this documentation to pass off pets as assistance animals.

NAR thanked Secretary Carson for taking action to protect hose who rely on assistance animals. You can ready NAR’s statement here and the letter from Secretary Carson here.

contine reading button

11.11.19 Mayor Driscoll Adresses Accessory Dwelling Units and Rent Control

Mayor Kim Driscoll appeared on Keller @ Large this weekend addressing directly two seperate housing issues: Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and Rent Control.

The REALTOR® position has been in favor of ADUs by right as a commonsense way to create housing in developed neighborhoods.

You can watch video of the interview above.





contine reading button

11.6.19 Energy Efficient Affordable Housing Development in Gloucester Gets State Support

The North Shore CDC development project Harbor Village in Gloucester was awarded $120,000 today from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Passive House Design Challenge program.  The project was one of eight around the commonwealth to receive such funding due to their designed energy efficiency. 

The program also specifically focused on multi-unit affordable housing projects.  Housing and Community Development Undersecretary Janelle Chan said, “Today’s awards will advance eight affordable housing developments, which will provide more than 500 units for low and middle-income households. We are thrilled to be supporting housing development that is safe and affordable for families, and is built to Passive House standards, reducing carbon emissions and lowering households’ energy costs.”

Passive House is a green building certification where the building uses extremely low levels of energy to create a comfortable living environment year-round.

Back in July, the Harbor Village project was one of 28 projects awarded funds as part of the state's 2019 Rental Housing Awards.

You can read more about today’s announcement here.

contine reading button

11.6.19 North Shore Election Results


On November 5th the North Shore got out and voted in local elections.  To see election results click on the corrisponding city below.









contine reading button

11.5.19 Lynn City Summit

On Saturday November 16th Lynn will be holding a City Summit at the North Shore Community College in Lynn.  The purpose of the summit is to learn about and also discuss potential solutions for the issues facing Lynn as community.

The day will begin with several concurrent community conversation workshops from 10am to 1pm.  Each workshop will have a presentation on the subject matter and then a working breakout session. The topics include: arts and culture, economic development, education, public health, public safety, transportation, and housing.  The second part of the event will be an afternoon open house from 1 to 3pm with an Exhibit and Resource Fair.

NSAR encourages those who live and work in Lynn to attend and add your voice to the discussion on housing.  REALTORS® have a unique perspective working with buyers and sellers on a daily basis.  Childcare is available on request and interpretation is available in Spanish and Khmer.

You can find more details here and get tickets through Eventbrite here.


contine reading button