About the Urban Design Commission

The purpose of the Urban Design Commission (UDC) is to provide an applicant with advice or recommendations from peers in the professional design community to inform the selection of a preferred schematic design from a number of options in order to ensure that development protects and enhances the public realm and human scale of the City.

More specifically, design review is intended to:

  • Maintain, protect and enhance existing buildings of historical and architectural significance,
  • Foster new development that is aesthetically compatible with existing buildings and infrastructure,
  • Encourage and assist building owners to restore and rehabilitate existing buildings in a cost effective, sensitive manner and in such a way as to be compatible with the surrounding neighborhood,
  • Encourage originality and creativity in the design of new buildings and additions, or the remodeling of existing buildings, and
  • Maintain and enhance the appearance of signage, new and existing.
  • Members

  • Reports & Decisions

  • Frank Valdez

Frank Valdes holds a Masters in Urban Design and Planning from MIT and a Bachelors’ of Architecture from Cornell University. He is an Associate Principal and partner at DiMella Shaffer and has been practicing architecture for over twenty years, and has served in the Design Review Committee for ten years. He is also involved with Combined Jewish Philanthropies, where he advises non-profit Jewish organizations with navigating their real estate, design, and expansion needs.

  • Deborah Fennick

Deborah Fennick, AIA, LEED AP, is an architect a with a focus on the public realm and how it contributes to community well-being. She is chair of the Design Review Committee and member of the Zoning Advisory Committee. She is the co-founder and design principal of Fennick McCredie Architecture. She also works with groups such as the YouthBuild Boston, and the Science Club for Girls in Cambridge to encourage the next generation of designers.

  • Andrew Arbaugh

Andrew is licensed landscape architect with over twelve years’ experience with a variety of mixed-use, streetscape, campus, multi-family and educational project types. He is a principal at Copley Wolff Design Group and has volunteered with a number of community organizations including East Somerville Main Streets (as both a Board Member and Design Review Committee Member); Friends of Chuckie Harris Park, Friends of the Healey School; and the Somerville Growing Center.

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 Number Case Number First Hearing Date Decisions Other Reports Updated datesort ascending
Clarendon Hill 00 40B#2020-0001 Jun 10, 2020 PDF icon Jan 22, 2020 ZBA Overview Presentation
PDF icon Original Submission (20.02.10)
Package icon Updated Full Submission (20.06.18)
PDF icon H3. Revised Building Elevations
Package icon Additional Plans for August 5
PDF icon P&Z 40B Overview (20.06.03)
PDF icon PSUF (20.06.12).pdf
PDF icon OSE (20.06.19).pdf
PDF icon Mobility (20.06.19).pdf
PDF icon PSUF (20.06.25).pdf
PDF icon Engineering (20.06.24).pdf
PDF icon PSUF (20.07.30).pdf
PDF icon Staff Report (08.05.20)
PDF icon Historic Preservation (20.07.30).pdf
08/05/2020 - 5:42pm
South St 111-153 DRA2020-0272 Aug 06, 2020 PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Memo 08/03/2020 - 4:28pm
Highland Ave 378 DRA2020-0039 May 07, 2020 PDF icon Use Special Permit Decision
PDF icon Minor Site Plan Approval Decision
PDF icon Plans
PDF icon Trip Generation Memo
PDF icon Neighborhood Meeting #1
PDF icon Staff Memo
07/29/2020 - 12:51pm
Middlesex Ave 5 PB2018-07-MA2-0320 Apr 23, 2020 PDF icon Decision PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032410_AppA.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032420_AppB (Compress).pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032410_AppC.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032420_AppDFG.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032410_03.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032420_00-02.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032420_04-06.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032410_AppE-1.pdf
PDF icon XMBLY-PUDrev-032410_AppE-2.pdf
PDF icon Staff Memo 07/23/2020 - 11:15am
Medford St 345 DRA2020-0052 May 20, 2020 PDF icon Drawings
PDF icon Variance Application 1
PDF icon Variance Application 2
PDF icon Variance Application 3
PDF icon Variance Application Addendum (20.06.15)
PDF icon Alternate Massing (20.07.07)
PDF icon Updated Drawings (20.07.07)
PDF icon Staff Memo 07/13/2020 - 9:07am
Eastman Rd 21 DRA2020-0011 Mar 11, 2020 PDF icon Plans 07/08/2020 - 2:11pm
Middlesex Ave 74 DRA #2020-0162 Apr 30, 2020 PDF icon Decision
PDF icon MMP Final Decision
PDF icon MPSP – Original Submission – 041420
PDF icon MSMP - MMP Certification - 060420
PDF icon MSMP - MMP Final Decision - 060420
PDF icon Response to Engineering Comments - 052120
PDF icon Response to PSUF Comments - 052120
PDF icon Block and Lot Plan
PDF icon Staff Memo
PDF icon PSUF Comments - 050420
PDF icon Engineering Comments - 050520
PDF icon Staff Report - June 11
07/01/2020 - 10:13am
Middlesex Ave 133 PB#07.10-R1-06.20 Jun 11, 2020 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Layout & Materials Revision
PDF icon Potential Office Tenant
PDF icon Full Application
PDF icon Corrected Staff Memo 07/01/2020 - 10:11am
Somerville Ave 365-369 DRA2020-0125 Jun 25, 2020 PDF icon Plans PDF icon Staff Memo 06/19/2020 - 8:44am
Union Square 71 DRA2020-0038 Jun 10, 2020 PDF icon Plans
PDF icon Context Elevations
PDF icon Plot Plan
PDF icon Variance Narrative
PDF icon Staff Memo 06/05/2020 - 10:25am
Somerville Ave 453 ZBA #2019-114-R1 12/19 Mar 11, 2020 PDF icon Updated Drawings
PDF icon 4.30.2020 Updated Drawings
PDF icon 453 Sumerville Ave Set _06_01_20 (POST).pdf
PDF icon June 10 Drawings
PDF icon Staff Report
PDF icon Views
PDF icon Updated Staff Report
PDF icon May 6 Staff Report
PDF icon June 10 Staff Report
06/05/2020 - 9:24am
Somerville Avenue 515 ZBA 2018-122-R1-7/19 Aug 07, 2019 PDF icon Decision
PDF icon Decision Annulment
PDF icon Applicant Memo 7-12-19
PDF icon Civil Plans 7-17-19
PDF icon Accessibility Memo 7-18-19
PDF icon Architectural Plans 7-18-19
PDF icon Plan Set 7-29-19
PDF icon Staff Report 05/13/2020 - 3:57pm
Somerville Avenue 391-395 ZBA 2019-37-E1 Apr 22, 2020 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Staff Report 05/13/2020 - 3:57pm
Murdock 50-54 ZBA 2018-19-R1-4-19-E1-3-20 Apr 22, 2020 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Staff Report 05/13/2020 - 3:56pm
Broadway 1154 ZBA2018-78-E2-3/20 Apr 22, 2020 PDF icon Decision PDF icon Staff Report 05/13/2020 - 3:55pm

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