About the Planning Board

The Planning Board is the Special Permit Granting Authority for the Assembly Square Mixed-Use Development (ASMD), Corridor Commercial Development (CCD), and Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Districts, Planned Unit Developments (PUDs), Overlay Districts, and Site Plan Approvals. The Board also holds public hearings and renders recommendations to the Board of Aldermen on zoning amendments.

  • Notes to Applicants

  • Members

  • Reports & Decisions

Development Review Standards:

  • Please be advised that, per the standards set out in Article 15 of the Somerville Zoning Ordinance, a development review application is not complete until all required community and Design Review meetings have been held, all necessary information has been submitted, and all fees have been paid. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed, will not be publicly noticed, and will not be scheduled for a public hearing.
  • Planning staff will work with applicants to discuss meeting dates and review application materials.
  • Applications for large projects may require a longer review period and evaluation by multiple City departments before being deemed complete and scheduled for a public hearing.
  • Planning staff reserves the right to ask for additional information or to change meeting dates.
  • Michael A. Capuano, Chair
  • Amelia Aboff, Vice Chair
  • Sam Dinning
  • Jahan Habib
  • Rob Buchanan (Alternate)

Michael Capuano

Mike Capuano has served on the Planning Board since 2008. He is a graduate of Somerville High School, Harvard College, and the Suffolk Law School.  He has also served as the Planning Board's designee to the Community Preservation Committee since its inception in 2013 and served two terms as its inaugural Chairman.  For the last four years, he has served as Assistant General Counsel at the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, where he represents the Secretariat and its agencies and programs, including the Office of Medicaid.

Amelia Aboff (Vice Chair)

Amelia Aboff is a development manager at WS Development, where her work focuses on repositioning and revitalizing large-scale centers to respond to the changing needs of mixed-use and retail hubs. Prior to joining WS Development, Amelia led expansion projects at Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC) and spent four years as a project manager for the Cities team at BuroHappold Engineering working on sustainability, urban planning, and economic development initiatives. Amelia is an AICP-certified planner and a LEED Accredited Professional.

Sam Dinning (Clerk)

Sam Dinning is an attorney specializing in local government law and public sector litigation.  Previously, he served as a prosecutor in King County, Washington, and as a voter protection attorney in Ohio during the 2016 election.  Sam grew up in Natick and now lives in East Somerville with his girlfriend, Janice, and their dog, Bo.  

Jahan Habib

Jahan Habib is a Global Financial and Accounting Operations Manager at Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Office of the Vice President for Finance, where he works on the organization's Global engagements. He is an MBA candidate at Boston College, with a focus on real estate, urban planning, and development. In addition, Jahan is a licensed real estate salesperson and residential property manager.

Rob Buchanan (Alternate)

Rob Buchanan has been a resident of Somerville since 2009 and has been a community advocate on a number of planning and zoning issues, particularly with respect to transformation areas such as Union Square, Boynton Yards, and Assembly Square. He is a member of the Cambridge Health Alliance Board of Trustees and was previously involved in Union Square Main Streets, Union Square Neighbors, and MassDOT's McGrath Boulevard Project Development Working Group. He is a health policy consultant and works on issues centered on improving publicly funded health care for vulnerable populations. Rob earned his master’s degree in public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Reports and Decisions

PLEASE NOTE: Applications made before April 15, 2011 are not included in this listing and can be found by clicking here.

Streetsort descending Number Case Number First Hearing Date Decisions Other Reports Updated date
Wallace Street 76 ZBA 2019-51 Jun 19, 2019 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 5-23-19
PDF icon Plan Set 6-13-19
PDF icon Staff Report 07/02/2019 - 11:16am
Walnut 130 ZBA 2018-39 Apr 18, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Appeal Docs for 5-2-18 PDF icon Staff Report
PDF icon Staff Report - Updated for May 16 2018
08/03/2018 - 11:17am
Walnut 130 ZBA 2017-70 Oct 04, 2017 PDF icon Decision (WWOP) PDF icon Plans
PDF icon Landscaping plans
PDF icon Proposed Plants
PDF icon Walnut St 130 - Updated Plans Oct 2017 Combined.pdf
PDF icon Staff Report
PDF icon Staff Report - Updated
08/03/2018 - 11:35am
Walnut St 171-175 ZBA 2014-73 Sep 03, 2014 PDF icon WalnutSt171-175.pdf PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Report 11/03/2014 - 10:25am
Walnut St 69 ZBA2008-37 05/20/2010 - 7:10am
Walnut Street 33 ZBA 2017-44 Jun 21, 2017 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 5-4-17 PDF icon Staff Report 08/06/2018 - 11:57am
Walnut Street 166 ZBA 2018-28 Apr 04, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Report 08/03/2018 - 11:33am
Walnut Street 21 ZBA 2017-57 Sep 06, 2017 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 8-15-17 PDF icon Staff Report 08/06/2018 - 12:16pm
Ward 10-12 ZBA 2017-122-E1-121/8 Jan 09, 2019 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set
PDF icon Previous Decision
PDF icon Staff Memo 01/30/2019 - 2:34pm
Ward St 10-12 ZBA 2017-122-R1-2019 May 15, 2019 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set - Proposed Revisions
PDF icon Updated Revision Set for June 19, 2019
PDF icon Staff Report
PDF icon Updated Staff Report for June 19 2019 ZBA
07/08/2019 - 9:10am
Ward St 10-12 ZBA 2017-122 Jan 17, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Ward St 10-12 - Plan Set for January 17, 2017 PDF icon Ward St 10-12 - Staff Report.pdf 08/07/2018 - 8:53am
Ward Street 29 ZBA 2019-42 Jun 05, 2019 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Architectural Plan 2-20-19
PDF icon Accessibility Letter 2-22-19
PDF icon Site Plan 6-25-19
PDF icon Staff Report
PDF icon Updated Staff Report
08/12/2019 - 4:15pm
Ware Street 46 ZBA 2017-19 Apr 05, 2017 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 1-17-17
PDF icon Plan Set 3-22-17
PDF icon Staff Report 08/06/2018 - 11:36am
Ware Street 8-10 ZBA 2018-80 Aug 22, 2018 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Plan Set 6-13-18 PDF icon Staff Report 08/30/2018 - 11:49am
Warner St 38 ZBA 2014-47 Jun 18, 2014 PDF icon WarnerSt38.pdf PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Report 06/27/2014 - 11:17am

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