Showing posts with label development. Show all posts
Showing posts with label development. Show all posts

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Preliminary Subdivision - Balsam Estates - Planning Board - Sep 25

In accordance with the Town of Franklin Zoning By-Laws, the Franklin Planning Board will hold a public hearing at the Town Hall (and can also be attended remotely) on Monday, September 25, 2023 at 7:00 PM in the Town Council Chambers of the Franklin Municipal Building, 355 East  Central Street, for a Preliminary Subdivision application titled “Balsam Estates” prepared by Guerriere & Halnon, Inc., Franklin, MA, and submitted to the Department of Planning & Community Development on September 5, 2023, by Joel D’Errico, Franklin, MA.

The property is located in the Rural Residential II Zoning District (Assessors Map 242 Lot 27) at the end of Kimberlee Avenue. The applicant is proposing to construct a 4-lot subdivision.
Please note: This will be your only written notice of this public hearing. Should the Planning
Board vote to continue this Public Hearing, the date and time will be posted on the Planning
Board’s website under Agendas.

Please contact the Department of Planning & Community Development at (508) 520-4907 if you require further information or if you need to make arrangements to provide translation services for the hearing impaired, or for persons with language barriers.

Copies of the plan and supporting documentation may be reviewed in the Department of Planning & Community Development during regular office hours.

Greg Rondeau, 

Preliminary Subdivision - Balsam Estates - Planning Board - Sep 25
Preliminary Subdivision - Balsam Estates - Planning Board - Sep 25

Sunday, February 12, 2023

"Housing choice is mismatched to need" & 15 minute city model

Two graphics to help inform our local zoning discussions

"Housing choice is mismatched to need."

Southern Urbanism "Housing choice is mismatched to need"
Southern Urbanism "Housing choice is mismatched to need"

You can visit DataTown at the Mass Housing Project to get our local stats ->

"The 15-minute city model is the idea that cities should be designed, or redesigned, so that within a 15-minute walk or bike of home, people should be provided the opportunity to access many of their daily needs like work, food, health, education, culture and leisure."
The 15-minute city model
The 15-minute city model

Shared from Twitter ->

For more about the 15 minute city model ->

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Economic Development Subcmte hears timeline on Franklin For All projects; reviews & forwards parking changes to Council (audio)

FM #847 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 847 in the series. 

This session of the radio show shares the audio recording of the Economic Development Subcommittee meeting held on Wednesday, Sep 21, 2022 in the Council Chambers.  

“Franklin For All” Steering Committee 

Chair Melanie Hamblen, Glenn Jones, Cobi Frongillo, Pat Sheridan

Greg Rondeau, Beth Wierling, and Bruce Hunchard

Quick recap:

Franklin For All portion

  • Full steering committee reviewed the priority listing and time line developed by Planning and Community Development Dept after the steering committee had set the priorities for the Franklin For All recommendations during their August meeting

  • Much of the discussion was around clarification on what was included, what was not, and why

Parking bylaw proposal portion of meeting

  • Just the Council members remainder on the dias for the longer section of the meeting around the parking proposals (B Wierling did move to the audience and ended upon commenting on the proposal as a resident)

  • There was much discussion and input from community and business members on aspects of the proposal

  • The subcommittee voted to move the recommendations forward to the Council with a variety of votes. At first they attempted to move all forward, by a 4-0 vote. When they were advised it was complete, a more refined set of votes on aspects of the proposals results in 3-1 votes (Hamblen, Frongillo, Sheridan for; Jones against). Another motion for an amendment (for residential parking) by Sheridan did not get a second so it died there. One of the proposed amendments (from Frongillo) was to expand the role of the Town Administrator to set more than just the rates. This was objected to (by Jones) and the resulting discussion did not result in a vote

  • The proposals will come before the Council at one of the October meetings

The recording of the meeting runs about 2 hours and 15 minutes

Audio file ->


Meeting agenda doc -> 

Franklin TV YouTube video -> 

My notes taken via Twitter and captured in one PDF can be found here:


We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio ( or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial.  

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.

How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors

  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit or

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!


You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"

Economic Development Subcmte hears timeline on Franklin For All projects; reviews & forwards parking changes to Council (audio)
Economic Development Subcmte hears timeline on Franklin For All projects; reviews & forwards parking changes to Council (audio)

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary

An extract from the Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary follows: (In the full report, this can be found on pages 15-17. The Summary Memo #3 can be found on page 60)

When proposing recommendations that can lead to increased density in an area, it is important to assess the potential impacts from new development and the municipality’s ability to serve that new development. A “build-out analysis” is a tool used in urban planning to estimate the amount and location of future growth. This analysis provides a projection of the maximum number of new housing units and other nonresidential square footage that could result if each parcel were to be redeveloped according to proposed zoning regulations. From there, potential impacts can be estimated such as increased population, parking needs, traffic, demand on municipal services, and more. In general, a build-out analysis provides an overestimation of growth and associated impacts with the understanding that many parcels in a given area will not be redeveloped for any number of reasons.

The new Multi-Family Zoning Requirement for MBTA Communities, also known as the new Section 3A of Massachusetts General Law Chapter 40A (“Section 3A”), requires communities that are served by the MBTA to have at least one zoning district of a “reasonable size” located within a half-mile of an MBTA station where multifamily housing is permitted “as of right” at a minimum gross density of 15 units per acre. To comply with the “reasonable size” requirement in Section 3A, these districts must be at least 50 acres total with a minimum of 25 contiguous acres. Under the regulations, Franklin will also need to prove to DHCDw that it has multifamily district with a unit capacity—the number of housing units that can be developed as of right in the district— equal to or greater than 1,883 units.

Currently, Franklin does not have a district of reasonable size that complies with all the requirements of Section 3A. The Downtown Commercial District does allow multifamily housing in accordance with Section 3A, but that district is less than the required 50 acres (40.2 acres). If it fails to comply with Section 3A, Franklin will no longer be eligible for state funding from the Housing Choice Initiative, the Local Capital Projects Fund, the MassWorks Infrastructure Program, and potentially other grant sources.

MAPC’s Data Services Department conducted an analysis to calculate total build-out units in the Franklin Center study area based on the Town’s current zoning and the adoption of new zoning regulations that comply with Section 3A. This analysis assumes the adoption of a Chapter 40R Smart Growth Overlay District (described in detail in the Recommendations section) that includes properties within the Downtown Commercial (DC), Commercial I (CI), and General Residential V (GRV) Districts.

With a total build-out of 3,352 housing units spread out across 174.29 acres, the district-wide gross density would come out to 19.23 units/acre and thus comply with Section 3A. MAPC compared the results of the build-out analysis with existing housing units in the CI, DCD, and GRV Districts to calculate net unit yield.

Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary
Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary

Based on recent studies, local data, site visits, and interviews with Town staff, MAPC has assessed infrastructure in the Franklin Center study area to determine to what extent existing infrastructure may be a barrier to new development and redevelopment.

DPW has no concerns about capacity issues in Franklin’s water and sewer systems, and they think that a very substantial amount of development would need to happen in a very short period of time in order for this to be a concern. Both Franklin’s wastewater and water supply systems could handle another 20% of their total capacity before it becomes a concern. DPW notes that the additional 20% does not mean 20% more units or more people, as newer systems are going to be more efficient in water usage and drainage.

If we translate 2,510 net units under the total build-out in the previous section to population, we could expect a maximum of 6,526 new residents given the average household size in Franklin of 2.6. This would be an increase Franklin’s population by a maximum of 17.8%, from 36,745 to 43,271 people. Based on these findings and the fact that the build-out is an overestimation, MAPC does not believe that the increase in population as a result of Franklin For All’s proposed zoning changes will result in capacity concerns for the Town’s water and sewer supplies.

The Charles River Pollution Control District operates the treatment facility that supports the Town’s sewer system. As part of the agreement for Franklin to be in the Charles River Pollution Control District, the State mandates that people may only water their lawns on trash day. This restriction is announced by the Town each year and runs from May to September. Because of this policy, residents have a false perception that the Town’s water supply is stressed and they blame new development for these complaints.

As the Town of Franklin considers new zoning in and around its downtown center, ensuring the provision of adequate transportation infrastructure and multimodal walking, biking, and transit connectivity will be critical to accommodate new growth and development. Under Section 3A, the Town must create a new multifamily zoning district, 50% of which must be located within half a mile of a commuter rail station. With an MBTA station in the heart of its pedestrian-friendly downtown, Franklin is well-positioned to create new transit- oriented housing and commercial opportunities for residents and visitors. However, targeted infrastructure improvements and broader transportation policy changes will be necessary to ensure that the Town maximizes the potential benefits it can realize under Section 3A.

Summary Memo #3 contains transportation observations and recommendations for infrastructure improvements at specific locations in Franklin Center, as well as more general transportation observations and recommendations that will enable the Town of Franklin to help meet projections for future growth.

The full report from MAPC on the Franklin For All project can be found

The Build-out and Infrastructure Analysis in PDF format ->

Summary Memo #3 in PDF format ->

Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary
Build-Out & Infrastructure Analysis from MAPC Franklin For All Executive Summary

Friday, August 19, 2022

Annual Report Of The Department Of Planning And Community Development - FY 2021

Note: FY 2021 is last year (July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021). The report was prepared to cover the business for the FY 2021 period. This year’s report FY 2022 (July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022) is in preparation now and is normally available for distribution at the polls for the November election.

The Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD) maintains a professional staff that provides the Town of Franklin with a wide array of planning services. DPCD’s mission is to plan and implement comprehensive policies and initiatives that work to fulfill the land use-related goals of the people of Franklin. We make every effort to maintain the character of the community while enhancing its economic, cultural and social vitality.

The DPCD’s staffing reflects the diverse skills needed to complete the many activities and roles the Department participates. DPCD’s activities and services include, but are not limited to comprehensive planning, economic development, subdivision plan, site plan and conservation plan review, open space and wetlands preservation, historic preservation, zoning by-law and subdivision regulation development, downtown revitalization, brownfields redevelopment, affordable housing, public transportation, transit oriented development, natural hazard mitigation and municipal vulnerability planning, and sustainable development including use of smart growth and low impact development concepts. The Department regularly identifies and sources funding for various community development projects and activities. DPCD balances its approach to these initiatives through long-term planning and public participation. For the last two fiscal years DPCD staff has also had responsibility of operating the Town’s Passport office.

Support of Town Boards and Committees DPCD personnel provide staff support to several boards, commissions and committees, including the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Design Review Commission, Technical Review Committee, the Municipal Affordable Housing Trust, and the Cultural District Committee. Approximately 60 to 65 percent of the Department’s total staff hours are utilized on Planning Board and Conservation Commission related issues. Since the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic DPCD staff has needed to spend much more of available staff time on running public meetings; in efforts to ensure citizen engagement and comply with open meeting law regulations, meetings have been conducted remotely using the Zoom platform. In addition, DPCD staff provides professional technical assistance to other public entities on an as needed basis, including Town Council, Zoning Board of Appeals, Town Council’s Economic Development Sub-committee, and various ad hoc committees.
Site Permitting and Guidance
DPCD is not a permit granting authority; its function during the permitting process is to integrate laws, regulations and plans with the Town’s goals to ensure that the best interests of the Town and its residents are served. DPCD personnel organize and attend meetings, provide technical assistance, offer professional opinions, and guide developers, businesses and residents through the Town’s various permitting processes.

Conservation and Resource Protection 
DPCD provides support to the Conservation Commission, as provided by MGL Chapter 131, Section 40. Conservation Staff, specifically the Town’s Conservation Agent, is responsible for speaking for the Conservation Commission when they are not present (see separate Conservation Commission Report). Although not a permit authority, the Conservation Agent does have limited police powers to regulate activities previously approved by the Conservation Commission, stop unauthorized activities, and promote and protect Franklin’s natural resources, including its wetlands, streams, brooks, ponds, lakes and watersheds. In addition, Conservation staff provides administrative support and reviews applications being presented to the Conservation Commission, as well as provides professional support to other Town Boards and Departments.

During FY21 DPCD Conservation staff worked on various conservation and land use related projects, including continued implementation of the DelCarte Conservation Property Master Plan; this year work included coordination of the fifth year of pond treatment. Another project overseen by the Conservation Agent because of wetlands protection issues is the Southern New England Trunkline Trail (SNETT) tunnel at Prospect Street; the tunnel project was completed in FY21.

Comprehensive Planning and Zoning DPCD is responsible for traditional land-use related activities including updating the Town’s plans, and amending and creating zoning bylaws. A description of zoning and land use issues worked on by DPCD during the 2021 fiscal year is summarized below.

Zoning Bylaw Amendments. DPCD worked on several amendments to Franklin’s Zoning Bylaw during the 2021 fiscal year. Starting in FY18 DPCD began a project to better define the Town's zoning districts by following parcel lines. Where parcels are within two or more zoning districts DPCD developed zoning map amendments to move the Zoning District line so each parcel is only in one zoning district, in most cases based on the current land use. During FY21 DPCD developed and Town Council approved three Zoning Map Amendments related to this project: 20-858, 20-861and 20-862.

DPCD developed Zoning Bylaw Amendment 21-872, which if approved would make it easier for a farmers series brewery, distillery, or winery tasting room to be approved, by eliminating the specific percentage restriction on the tasting room’s size. The tasting room would still be an accessory use to the primary brewery, distillery, or winery use. The zoning bylaw amendment is expected to be approved by Town Council early in FY22.

Franklin Center Project, Rezoning for Economic Growth & Diverse Housing Opportunities. DPCD is working on a planning/zoning study with the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC). The Franklin Center Project includes an extensive audit of the Town’s Zoning Bylaw as it relates to land uses and dimensional regulations in the Downtown area and adjacent neighborhoods. As part of the Project MAPC will perform substantial community outreach and engagement, which is expected to begin during the first half of FY22.

Hazard Mitigation and Climate Change Vulnerability Planning 
The Federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 requires communities to develop, adopt, and regularly update a Hazard Mitigation Plan to be eligible for FEMA hazard mitigation grants. Franklin’s first HMP was prepared in 2010; an update was needed. During FY20 and FY21 the Town worked to update its HMP. Led by the DPCD Director, the Town’s Hazard Mitigation Working Group worked with its contractor, the Metropolitan Area Planning Council, to assess and update data within the Town’s outdated 2010 HMP, including infrastructure and risk assessments, potential hazards, and Franklin’s current and potential mitigation strategies. During the first quarter of FY21 a public input process was completed, including a public hearing on July 28, 2020. The Draft HMP was then updated representing public comments received, and the Draft HMP was submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for review. FEMA completed a review of the Town’s 2020 HMP and found it met all Federal requirements, pending Town adoption. On January 6, 2021 Franklin Town Council formally adopted Franklin’s Hazard Mitigation Plan 2020 Update with passage of Resolution 21-01. Soon after the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) approved the Town of Franklin Hazard Mitigation Plan 2020 Update effective January 22, 2021, allowing the Town to apply for FEMA mitigation grant funding through January 21, 2026. The goals and strategies within the updated HMP will be implemented over a five year period, and will be integrated into other Town plans and policies.
Housing Production Plan Update 
Over the last two years DPCD has utilized substantial staff resources to develop an update to the Town’s Chapter 40B Housing Production Plan (HPP). The HPP is a proactive strategy for planning and developing affordable housing, and includes strategies that a community uses to enable it to meet its affordable housing needs in a manner consistent with MGL Chapter 40B and related Massachusetts Department of Housing & Community Development regulations. A HPP provides a Comprehensive Housing Needs Assessment, a summary of Affordable Housing Goals, and a description of Implementation Strategies the Town will utilize to meet its goals.

During FY21 a Draft HPP was developed by DPCD with input and assistance from the Town Council Economic Development Committee, Municipal Affordable Housing Trust, Franklin Housing Authority, the Town’s Administration and staff, and the Town of Franklin’s residents. Public input on the Draft HPP, and housing issues in general, were accepted from anyone interested in providing comments during a formal Public Comment Period, which ran from May 12, 2021 to June 25, 2021. During that time DPCD attended various public meetings to present the highlights of the Draft HPP, and provide time for residents and officials to ask questions and provide input. One of the meetings, a Formal Public Hearing on the Draft HPP, was held during a Franklin Municipal Affordable Housing Trust meeting on June 2, 2021.

DPCD will use the input received to create a Final version of the Plan, and expect the Final HPP update will be adopted by the Franklin Planning Board and Town Council in the first quarter of FY22. Once adopted by the Town the HPP will be submitted to Massachusetts Department of Housing & Community Development for approval.

Planning and Implementation of Community Development and Economic Development Projects Each year the DPCD works on many community and economic development initiatives. The Department develops strategies, proposes policies, bylaw changes and Town Council resolutions, manages projects, and seeks grants in efforts to balance Franklin’s community livability and its economic viability.

DPCD encourages responsible community development that meets the goals and objectives of the Town’s various planning documents, and the State’s Sustainable Development and Smart Growth Principles. Some of DPCD’s more important recently completed or ongoing projects and initiatives are summarized below.

Support of Affordable Senior Housing. DPCD worked with Franklin DWP’s Water and Sewer Superintendent to successfully apply to the Housing
Choice  Initiative  Capital  Grant  Program  for  a $201,000 grant. The funds are being used to design a new Water Booster Pumping Station and related water mains that will provide water and fire protection service for the proposed 60-Unit Franklin Ridge Senior Housing project on Veterans Memorial Drive.

Regional Planning. DPCD regularly attends meetings and works on various regional planning issues with a variety of regional organizations, including Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), the Southwest Advisory Planning Committee (SWAP Committee), and the I-495/MetroWest Corridor Partnership. Franklin’s Town Planner Amy Love is currently very involved with regional planning issue as the Town’s representative to the Metropolitan Area Planning Council, and Co-chair of the SWAP Committee. In addition, the DPCD occasionally supports the initiatives of other regional organizations including the Franklin Bellingham Rail Trail Committee, Friends of the SNETT, the MetroWest Tourism and Visitors Bureau, and the Charles River Meadowlands Working Group.

Downtown Revitalization
For close to twenty years the Town has made revitalization of Downtown Franklin a major focus and has worked to improve the Downtown in a variety of ways. During the 2021 fiscal year DPCD continued to work on projects related to implementation of the Franklin Center Plan, which was developed in 2002 and 2003 to provide Town officials with a vision and basic strategy for revitalization of Downtown Franklin. One important component of the Franklin Center Plan is Cultural Uses. The issue of Cultural Economic Development has been a focus for DPCD for more than six years, including working with the MetroWest Tourism and Visitors Bureau on a variety of cultural economic development marketing activities, preparing and distributing Cultural District marketing materials, performing outreach and educational activities, and coordinating efforts with local stakeholders. DPCD provides assistance to the Town’s Cultural District Committee in a variety of ways on a range of projects.

REVIVE Local Arts Indicators Project. DPCD and the Cultural District Committee participated in the regional REVIVE Local Arts Indicators Project implemented by the Metropolitan Area Planning Council. The project focused on four Massachusetts communities with a high density of arts and culture assets, Franklin, Arlington, Beverly and Boston. REVIVE documented impacts from COVID-19 to the local creative economy, and developed strategies that municipalities can utilize to chart a path to response and recovery for local artists and arts and cultural organizations. A recent webinar, REVIVE
Local Arts Indicators Discussion, provides a project summary:

DPCD works regularly on a wide range of economic development projects and programs, and is one of DPCD’s top priorities, second only to providing excellent administrative and technical assistance to the Town’s boards, commissions and committees. Potential benefits to the Town from successful implementation of DPCD’s business retainage and attraction initiatives are significant. Efforts focus on increasing the value of Franklin’s commercial and industrial tax base, filling the Town’s empty and underutilized industrially zoned buildings, and attracting the right mix of companies to the community. DPCD regularly communicates with realtors, property owners and businesses to make them aware of State and Federal technical assistance programs and financial resources that can be made available to further their development, and to raise awareness of DPCD as a resource for local businesses. DPCD works regularly Massachusetts Office of Business Development, MassDevelopment and other agencies in efforts to attract the right mix of companies to the Town of Franklin’s industrial and commercial areas.

DPCD will continue to undertake a wide range of community and economic development projects, programs, and planning initiatives that will keep the Town of Franklin’s goals and objectives current and representative of residents’ needs and desires. DPCD is proud of its accomplishments and welcomes public input on all of its efforts to improve the quality of life for the residents of Franklin.

Respectfully submitted,

Department of Planning & Community Development Staff

The full Annual Report for 2021 can be found

The collection of Annual Reports can be found online

Annual Town Report Of The Town Clerk’s Office - FY 2021
Annual Report Of The Town of Franklin - FY 2021

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Recap: Economic Development Subcommittee hears about the complicated Nu-Style property

Quick Recap:
  • The neighboring residents and business property owners are not interested in remediation of the contaminated site 
  • Without additional EPA/DEP grants funds to facilitate the clean up, the Town is lacking in funds to clean it properly although it recognized  the need and obligation to do so
  • For now, the Town will continue to work the grant applications for funds, and may consider re-issuing the property for sale
My full set of notes via Twitter from the meeting ->

The Franklin TV recording of the meeting ->

Economic Development Subcommittee Meeting - Jul 20, 2022 - 5:45 PM
Economic Development Subcommittee Meeting

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

DOER has scheduled seminars to obtain feedback on stretch code proposal

 DOER Announces Public Hearings on New Stretch Code Proposal

Dear Building Energy Code Stakeholder,

DOER will hold five virtual public hearings to receive comment on its Straw Proposal for Stretch Code update and New Specialized Stretch Code released on February 8th. The following information can be reviewed in advance of the hearings at DOER's new Stretch Code Development webpage:

1.      The Straw Proposal     

2.      Recording of February 8 Webinar       (registration required to view)

3.      Summary of stretch code analysis informing straw proposal


Interpretation services will be provided at all hearings in Arabic, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, Spanish, and Vietnamese.


Hearing Focus


Western Region

March 2, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Metro Boston and Northeastern Region

March 3, 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Environmental Justice Communities

March 4, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Central Region

March 7, 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Southeastern Region

March 8, 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm


DOER will provide a brief presentation to respond to clarifying questions received in advance of the public hearing, however the majority of the time is reserved to hear public comments. Public comments will be limited to 3 minutes per person to ensure all participants have a chance to provide comment.

To submit questions or to sign up to give public comment at a hearing please send an email to with the title ‘Comment for Public Hearing’ and include your name, organizational affiliation and municipality where you work or reside, as applicable. There will be four regional hearings and one additional hearing dedicated to Environmental Justice communities statewide. At each regional hearing, comments and questions from participants representing communities in the designated region will be prioritized. Visit the Green Communities webpage to find out which region your community is in.

REMINDER: DOER highly encourages written comments on the Straw Proposal for Stretch Code update and New Specialized Stretch Code to be submitted electronically to with the subject line “Stretch Code Straw Proposal Comments”. Written comments will be accepted until 5 pm EST on March 9th, 2022

Thank you,

Maggie McCarey, Director - Energy Efficiency Division

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

What is Strong Towns about? (video)

What is Strong Towns about? 
This video is part of a series where the "Not Just Bikes" author comes to realize that Charles Marohn has come to the same conclusion via a different path. When someone does that, there is something there there.

So while I am continuing to read the Strong Towns book ( find out other info about them, this video series may help jump start your research effort too.

Again, this video is the second of a series. In the first ( reveals his approach. I have not yet viewed the others in the series. That effort is underway.

Thanks to Cobi Frongillo for sharing this link (


Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Strong Towns Event @ THE BLACK BOX - 11/15/21 (audio)

FM #661 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 661 in the series. 

This session of the radio show shares the Strong Towns Town Hall event with Congressman Jake Auchincloss, State Rep Jeff Roy, Franklin Town Councilor Cobi Frongillo, and Charles Marohn from Strong Towns. 

The event was held at THE BLACK BOX and broadcast via Franklin TV and Zoom. 

After a round of opening remarks, there is a question and answer period with audience participation. Each question asker identifies themselves so you should be able to follow along.


The recording runs about 1  hour and 14 minutes, so let’s listen to the Strong Towns Event on Nov 15, 2021. Audio file ->


My notes from the session 

More about Strong Towns can be found online ->


We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio ( or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial.  

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.


How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors

  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit or

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!


You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"


Sunday, May 16, 2021

Franklin, MA: Town Council - Meeting Agenda - May 19

Franklin Town Council
Agenda & Meeting Packet
May 19, 2021 - 7:00 PM

a. This meeting is being recorded by Franklin TV and shown on Comcast channel 11 and Verizon Channel 29. This meeting may be recorded by others.
b. Chair to identify Council Members participating remotely

a. Citizens are welcome to express their views for up to five minutes on a matter that is not on the agenda. The Council will not engage in a dialogue or comment on a matter raised during Citizen Comments. The Town Council will give remarks appropriate consideration and may ask the Town Administrator to review the matter.
a. Considering the purchase, exchange, lease or value of real property, because an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the negotiating position of the Board.



Please find the agenda and connection info for the Meeting

Maple Hill Definitive Subdivision Plan (per submission to Planning Board)

Franklin, MA: Town Council - Meeting Agenda - May 19
Franklin, MA: Town Council - Meeting Agenda - May 19