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 project manager at Leggat McCall Properties, working with the strategic real estate advisory team on projects for academic and institutional clients. Prior to joining Leggat McCall, she was a development manager at WS Development focusing on mixed-use and retail assets. In earlier roles, Amelia led expansion efforts at Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC) and sustainability, urban planning, and economic development initiatives at BuroHappold Engineering. 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.

Street Numbersort descending Case Number First Hearing Date Decisions Other Reports Updated date
Hudson St 86 ZBA 2012-39 Jun 06, 2012 PDF icon HudsonSt86.pdf PDF icon Plot & Site Plans PDF icon Staff Report 08/02/2012 - 12:22pm
Highland Avenue 86 ZBA 2012-106 Dec 24, 2012 PDF icon HighlandAve86.pdf PDF icon Plot plan
PDF icon Site plans
PDF icon Staff Report 07/08/2013 - 10:44am
Highland Ave 86 ZBA 2012-106 Jan 23, 2013 PDF icon HighlandAve86.pdf PDF icon Site Plans
PDF icon Plot Plans
PDF icon Staff Report 03/29/2013 - 11:36am
Broadway 860 ZBA2009-14 05/20/2010 - 7:10am
Broadway 862 ZBA 2012-86 Nov 07, 2012 PDF icon Broadway862.pdf PDF icon plans PDF icon Staff Report 01/03/2013 - 10:12am
Broadway 862 ZBA2008-22 05/20/2010 - 7:10am
Broadway 862 ZBA 2014-116 Dec 10, 2014 PDF icon Broadway862 (#2014-116).pdf PDF icon Floor Plan PDF icon Staff Report 02/19/2015 - 9:57am
Broadway 864 ZBA2009-39 05/20/2010 - 7:10am
Broadway 864 ZBA 2014-20 Apr 16, 2014 PDF icon Broadway864.pdf PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Report 04/28/2014 - 11:05am
Broadway 864 ZBA2009-63 05/20/2010 - 7:10am
Jacques Street 87 ZBA 2019-82 Dec 12, 2019 PDF icon SomervilleAve337Unit2-StaffReport_121219.pdf 12/06/2019 - 8:48am
Jaques Street 87 ZBA 2019-82 Dec 11, 2019 PDF icon Updated Plan Set PDF icon Updated Staff Report 12/06/2019 - 12:51pm
Jaques Street 87 ZBA 2019-82 Sep 18, 2019 PDF icon Plan Set 7-17-19
PDF icon Plan Set 8-16-19
PDF icon Plan Set 9-3-19
PDF icon Plan 9-10-19
PDF icon Plan Set 10-23-19
PDF icon Staff Report 10/28/2019 - 3:03pm
Highland Road 87 ZBA 2015-69 Sep 16, 2015 PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Report 09/16/2015 - 11:16am
Highland Rd 87 ZBA #2015-69 Sep 16, 2015 PDF icon HighlandRd87.pdf PDF icon Planning Staff Report 09/30/2015 - 1:51pm

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