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Forum on housing production plan to be held in Amherst

Finding ways to ensure more families can afford to live in Amherst is an objective of a housing production plan that is nearly finished.

The Housing and Sheltering Committee will hold a public forum on the draft housing production plan prepared by consultant Karen Sunnarborg, of Jamaica Plain, Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the fifth-floor lounge at Ann Whalen Apartments.

Nancy Gregg, the committee’s co-chairwoman, said Sunnarborg will provide information about existing affordable housing in Amherst, the demographic trends and the next steps to achieve housing goals.

“This includes a plan for what the town could do on a yearly basis,” Gregg said.

The housing production plan recommends strategies to increase housing stock in town, zoning changes that could foster new construction and identifies sites suitable to build housing. Gregg said the housing production plan references the town’s master plan.

Some of the conclusions are concerning for the town, Gregg said, including a declining number of school-age children and more middle-age residents.

Gregg added that it is important for residents to understand the plan and what could happen. “We’d like them to know what the findings are,” she said.

Refreshments will be served.

— SCOTT MERZBACH

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