On Tuesday July 25th Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and State Representative Tim Whelan came to the Town of Dennis joining the Selectmen and Administration in Signing a Community Compact agreement. The Community Contract is a voluntary agreement between individual Towns and the Commonwealth. Each Community Compact is unique and tailored to best practices that Community selects.
Under the Community Compact, the Commonwealth will offer technical assistance, extra incentive points on grants, and additional grant programs offered only to designated Community Compact Towns.
The Town of Dennis applied for a Community Compact with the following best practices: Mixed Use Development – The Town selected Mixed Use Development as a best practice area as it meets the needs for promoting concentrated development where housing and employment can work together. The mixed use development approach allows for coordination of infrastructure that serves all community needs in one area. By concentrating development under the auspices of M.G.L. Chapter 40R, Dennis will be able to focus transportation, wastewater, recreation, and other municipal infrastructure in a manner that serves the greatest need.
Affordable Housing – The Town of Dennis adopted an affordable housing zoning bylaw in 2001 and have had numerous applications approved under this bylaw since then. In 2004 and 2007, Dennis enhanced its affordable housing zoning by making multi-family housing available in the Dennis Port Village Center (2004) and West Dennis Village Center (2007) with 25% affordability requirements.
With this Community Compact, the Town of Dennis hopes to explore an array grant opportunities including ones for wastewater as Dennis explores community partnerships and looks to the future.
Over the past several months there has been much discussion about the length of season, off-season accessibility and how to effectively monitor and enforce off-season access to the properties in the Seasonal Resort Community Zoning District. The Planning Board, after a couple house keeping items, will dedicate its August 7, 2017 agenda to a discussion of these issues with the hope of figuring out where we go from here. It is the Planning Board’s hope that all those with an interest in this issue will try to attend. Of course, written comments would also be welcome.
The Planning Board meeting will start at 6:30 in the Stone Hearing Room 685 Route 134, South Dennis MA.
Sitting here at the One Cape Conference and hearing very promising things from the Cape Cod Commission regarding changes to the regional regulatory framework. Could be very promising for Dennis Port Village Center and our Exit 9 Development Center.
The Harwich Junior Theater is an anchor for Dennis Port Village Center (although located next door). Its stability helps our local businesses, which we heralded throughout our Village Center revitalization efforts. We are all pulling for its return to financial stability.
Last week was a good one for reconfirming that the vision being pursued by a variety of town boards. Two local projects were recognized by the National Association of Homebuilders for their “Best in American Living Awards. The 27 unit MelPet Farm Community Housing project won a Silver Medal in the Best Affordable Multi-Family Development Category. In November 2016, this project was also awarded a Gold Award winner from the Builders and Remodellers Industry of Cape Cod for Excellence in Affordable Housing.
Heritage Sands was also honored by both of these associations as well. Heritage Sands won the top BALA award “Community of the Year” along with a Platinum Award for Best Single Family Community Under 100 Units and was recognized as the Best Project in the North Atlantic Region by the National Association of Home Builders. Heritage Sands also won a Gold Award from The Builders and Remodellers Industry of Cape Cod for Outstanding and Most Clever Use of Small Space during their November 2016 Award Program.
In receiving these national awards, these two projects illustrate the compassion that the Town of Dennis puts into its zoning and site plan review procedures to ensure that quality projects are being created around the town.