January 11, 2007 FDR Minutes by chrstphr

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									FDR Meeting Notes January 11, 2007 7:45 a.m., in Ablondi Room Attendance: Sam Swisher, Katie Murphy, Deb Cleveland, Angie Fowler, Ilma Paixao, Michelle Swartz, Rev. Mindi Welton-Mitchell, Rosemary Weich, Ruth Ann Paterson, Glen Weisbrod, Chris Ross, Ted Welte, John Stasik, Charlene Cabral, Esq., Julian M. Suso, Timothy Goddard, Alexis Silver; Staff: Kathleen Bartolini, Bryan Taberner, Kimbra Wellock. Review of November 9, 2006 and December 14, 2006 Meeting Notes Meeting notes were approved. Downtown Vision Map & Document – Drafts and Action Plans Wellock presented the draft versions of maps created to summarize the visioning work FDR has been doing over the course of the past several months. The group provided feedback and edits which will be incorporated into the final document. The maps will be working documents, and will be revised as work progresses and new ideas are developed relating to downtown revitalization. It was suggested that the town consider changing downtown zoning to allow for residential uses on the first floor on secondary downtown streets. Concern was raised that multifamily housing development would displace businesses. In the end, the group felt that there should be an option for multi-family development to include first floor residential so that there is flexibility in the zoning to reflect market conditions. Comments shared at today’s meeting will be incorporated into the maps, which will be shared with the Downtown Railroad Crossing Task Force Urban Design Consultant team as soon as possible. Stasik will meet with Board of Selectmen Chair Dennis Giombetti to provide an overview of FDR’s work on this issue. Work will be shared with the Planning Board as well, after the Board of Selectmen and DRC Consultant Team have been briefed. Heart of Winter – Restaurant Discount Program Planning for Heart of Winter programming is underway. Carla Fink will return from vacation on January 22nd. Updates Restoration of $50,000 Funding and Plan for Action Bartolini reported that FDR’s $50,000 in funds originally eliminated by Romney as part of the 9C cuts were restored by Governor Patrick. Bartolini recently received the contract for this project from the State. The deadline for project completion will remain June 30, 2007. Bartolini will revise the project timeline to reflect the delays. Welte underscored the importance of completing the RFP as soon as possible, and volunteered to draft the RFP, with assistance from Murphy and Bartolini. Schedule and Plan Update for $500,000 Economic Stimulus Funds Bartolini reported that little progress has been made since last meeting on this project given the holidays and Administration change at the State. Small Business Workshops – February 1 and February 8 Wellock announced that the Planning and Economic Development Division is hosting two workshops for small businesses in February. SCORE will be the presenter. The topic of the February 1st workshop is business plan writing, and the topic of the February 8th workshop is marketing. Cabral stated that Mondays or Wednesdays would be better days to hold workshops as ESL classes are

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held on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Wellock said that she would look into changing the workshop dates, since marketing had not yet begun and so we can capture a greater number of participants. Arcade Bartolini reported that the relocation plan has been revised and that a relocation meeting will be scheduled in the near future. Bartolini said she would find out from Mike Gatlin and report back to Paixao so she can communicate with Arcade tenants. Cabral added that information coming out of Perry’s office is often confusing and misleading. At its January 25th meeting, the Planning Board will begin to finalize project details so that the project can move ahead. We need agreement on final design plans. Once agreement is reached, final design will be submitted to MassHousing so that the financing package can be finalized. The Urban Center Housing Tax Increment Financing agreement also needs final approval from the state. Other Developments and Announcements • • City Map Project: Bartolini explained that the maps were available and provided background on the project. Town Manager Julian Suso introduced Timothy Goddard, Assistant Town Manager, and Alexis Silver, Human Services Coordinator.

Next Agenda The group wanted to focus on BRAMAS at the next meeting. Topics of discussion will be recent organizational changes at BRAMAS, and how FDR and BRAMAS can work together. Meeting adjourned at 9:00 a.m.

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