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Cambridge Highlights Affordable Housing in Annual Report

Cambridge City Hall
Cambridge City Hall By Jacqueline S. Chea
By Patricia J. Liu, Crimson Staff Writer

The City of Cambridge highlighted affordable housing measures, infrastructure developments, and transportation safety policies in its fiscal year 2018 report this August.

Cambridge rerpoted that it has devoted more than $147 million towards the Affordable Housing Trust since 2001. This past fiscal year, the city has also seen the advancement of more than 350 affordable housing projects and the addition of 127 inclusionary housing units, which are set aside for low-income tenants.

“No City in the Commonwealth is as committed to affordable housing as Cambridge is,” Cambridge City Manager Louis A. DePasquale wrote in the report. “In November, the City of Cambridge was proud to celebrate the approval of our 1000th inclusionary housing unit.”

In addition to constructing more affordable housing, the city constructed the Cambridge Warming Center, which was open this year from January to April. The center — created to help homeless people in Cambridge through chilling winters — allows clients to shower, eat a hot meal, and seek refuge from cold weather. According to the report, the center assisted over 475 people during its first year.

Additional infrastructure developments this past fiscal year include the Green Line Extension Project, which adds additional stops to the MBTA transit service; the YWCA Cambridge Family Shelter, which offers shelter for up to 10 families; and the Municipal Facilities Improvement Project, which identifies potential upgrades to city buildings.

The city continued its commitments to the Vision Zero strategy, which strives to have zero casualties and injuries in traffic-related incidents. The Vision Zero Action Plan highlights seven main steps to safe streets. Specific policies involved reducing speed limits in squares to 20 miles per hour and separating some bicycle lanes from lanes for other vehicles.

The report also outlines the Cambridge City Council’s Guiding Principles and Goals, which were adopted provisionally in 2017. According to the principles, the Council aims to be “deliberate,” “equitable,” and “resilient,” among other attributes.

The Council stated 12 goals for its members, including to “deepen our commitment to sustainable use of energy and strengthen our capacity for resilience,” to “eliminate bias within the City workplace and wider community,” and to “improve Council’s capacity to collaborate more effectively, make better decisions, and increase its accountability to the public.”

DePasquale encouraged people to read about the City’s work this past fiscal year in the report, which can be found on the City of Cambridge’s website.

“A strength of this City is the way in which departments, leadership, and staff work collaboratively with our elected officials,” DePasquale wrote. “Our team works diligently to accomplish the policies established by the City Council and provide the day-to-day services that are important to our community.”

—Staff writer Patricia J. Liu can be reached at

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