June 1, 2004

Framingham Tomorrow Meeting

There will be a public meeting on the town's community development plan, Wednesday, June 9, 7 p.m. at Town Hall's Public Hearing Room.

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council will outline results of several meetings over the past year where residents talked about housing, transportation, the environment and economic development; MAPC will present draft recommendations and solicit comments.

I attended several of these meetings, in an effort to put more attention on the issue of pedestrian friendly development -- and the fact that if you build housing downtown in places like the old Dennison complex, but then don't make an appealing walkable environment, it's not going to do much good for downtown. People will just get in their cars and drive off elsewhere for their shopping.

Reminder: We've got an MBTA train station downtown, and how much good is that doing local businesses in the area? I suspect not much, because it's an extraordinarily unappealing walking environment around there. People drive in and drive out. The mere presence of sidewalks is not enough.

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