Vacancies on committee to create affordable housing (and more)

The Town of Southborough is once again advertising for volunteers to fill board vacancies.

This time, the focus is on the Southborough Housing Opportunity Committee (a.k.a. SHOPC). The board is meant to be comprised of 7 members, but currently has three vacancies.

SHOPC’s charge relates to an issue of great concern to the town and some residents. The committee was formed by the town to:

study, promote, and act as facilitators to create affordable housing in the Town of Southborough, and any other action related thereto.

Many residents and officials in town have been talking about the importance of controlling which 40B projects are built here. 

The current 40B controversy in town is over proposed developments at Park Central. Abutters have been fighting the 40B project in front of the Zoning Board of Appeals.

Meanwhile, ZBA Chair Leo Bartolini has been seeking to work out a deal with the developer to increase the number of units that qualify as affordable housing. The proposed deal would allow additional non-40B residential development at the site.

Bartolini’s stated goal is to have more control over other future 40Bs in town.

Anyone with questions about SHOPC can contact Town Planner Jennifer Burney at

To apply for a seat, email Assistant Town Administrator Vanessa Hale at

Other town vacancies include two on the Affordable Housing Trust Committee. In a comment about Park Central on the blog last night, committee member Donna McDaniel wrote of her work on that committee. Apparently the difference is:

our focus is on acquiring housing with the help of some of our [Community Preservation Act] funds…. not involved in any of these large-scale developments.

For the town’s full list of committees with vacancies, click here.

If you would like to apply for any of the town committees, here is a link to the volunteer form. You can use it to indicate interest in specific committees or volunteer to serve wherever needed.

(Photo by Susan Fitzgerald)

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