Help Wanted! Volunteers needed for Docket Digest and CPC Committee

With the successful campaign for Ward 5 At-Large Councilor, Andreae Downs will be focused on the work of the City Council starting almost immediately!  Many thanks to Andreae for her years of volunteer work coordinating the Docket Digest each week and chairing the Community Preservation Committee (CPC).  We are sorry to lose her incredible efforts and need to find volunteers to fill her shoes.  In particular we need volunteers to:

  • Compile the Docket Digest each week:  This involves reviewing the info sent in the Friday packet from the Newton Planning Department, and posting it on our website.  It can all be done from home at a time convenient for you.  It is, however, a weekly commitment.
  • Chair (or Co-Chair?) the CPC Committee: The CPC Committee reviews all applications for CPC money, discusses the pros and cons, and develops a recommendation that is sent to the LWVN Board.  A letter with our comments and recommendations is sent to the CPC (and sometimes presented at the meeting in person).  So far, LWVN has commented on every application, and we would like to continue this in the future.  This committee only needs to meet when there is an application to review.  Those who have served on it have found it to be very enjoyable and not burdensome.

If you are interested in helping with either of these activities, please contact

From the Newton Planning Department: Community Engagement Group

The Planning Department is embarking on the development of a Vision Plan for Needham Street, to help serve as a guiding document for future land use development proposals.

A critical component of the effort will involve gaining input from members of the Newton community on the issues at play in and around Needham Street. We are in the process of forming a Community Engagement Group that will meet several times in 2017 and 2018.  In order to ensure that a variety of perspectives are represented and that members are able to commit to a series of meetings, we have created a short application for individuals to demonstrate their interest.

A list of anticipated meeting dates of the Community Engagement Group is online. All  of the meetings will be open to the public.  

 The application as well as more information about the Needham Street Area Vision Plan can be found at

 The deadline for applications is November 19, 2017. 

Send your thoughts on Washington Place to City Council today!

On Monday night, the Newton City Council will vote on the permit for the proposed Washington Place project in Newtonville.  LWVN supports this proposal because it includes 160 units of housing close to transit and amenities, 25% affordable to low- and middle-income households, village center revitalization, pedestrian and traffic improvements, LEED Gold certification, transit subsidies, and ZipCar and bike facilities, among other benefits.  [See the next post for a link to the LWVN letter in support of this project.]

Make your voice heard today by emailing your comments to

LWVN Supports Washington Place

LWVN sent a letter to the Newton City Council in favor of Washington Place.  Click here to review the letter, which contains a thorough analysis of the project: Letter on Washington Street 6-14-17



This Thursday, May 25th: Informational Meeting on Northland Site on Needham Street

Join LWVN members at an informational meeting about the proposed development on the Marshall’s site on Needham Street.  The meeting will be held at 156 Oak Street on May 25th starting at 7 pm.  Please click Oak St Directions–Marshall’s Meeting to see the location of the meeting and of available parking.  Below is a short summary of the project.

Northland Needham Street Project Summary:

Northland Development owns 28 acres on both sides of Needham Street including the Marshall’s mall, Oak Street “Piano Mill” and the TJX building.  They are proposing a “mixed use center” including 865 residential units, 175,000 s.f. office and 200,000 s.f. retail uses as envisioned in the Newton Comprehensive Plan Mixed Use Center Amendment of 2011.

Procedurally Northland is not currently seeking approval of the project but is seeking a re-zoning of the land from MU-1 which prohibits residential use to BU-4 which allows a mix of uses.  A hearing on the re-zoning is scheduled to open on June 13, and Northland is hoping to conclude a pro-active re-zoning process in 2017 in order to seek the project special permit in 2018.


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