Community Preservation Act by RecGeog


More Info
									                                                     Smart Growth and Open Space Protection:
                                                 The Community Preservation Act in Massachusetts
                                                                                                                        Robert S. Bristow
                                                                                                               Geography and Regional Planning
                                                                                                                   Matthew T. Van Heynigen
                                                                                                                      Public Administration
                                                                                                          Westfield State College, Massachusetts, USA
ABSTRACT: Threatening urban sprawl creates                          OBJECTIVES: In 2002, Southwick’s citizens                                                          DATA: Fifty communities out of the 351                                                         The Community Preservation Act is state-
a need for protecting open space. This poster il-                   voted to accept the Massachusetts Commu-                                                           found in Massachusetts were selected for our                                                   wide enabling legislation to allow cities and
lustrates the findings of a survey administered in                  nity Preservation Act. This act helps commu-                                                       study. Twenty five communities have adopted                                                    towns to exercise control over local planning
Southwick Massachusetts for the preparation of                      nities plan for smart growth by providing                                                          the CPA and twenty five have yet to do so.                                                     decisions. This legislation strengthens and em-
a Community Open Space and Recreation Plan.                         funds for the preservation of open space,                                                          Standard socio-economic data were collected                                                    powers Massachusetts communities:
These data are then compared to other commu-                        affordable housing and historic land-                                                              from US Census and the Commonwealth of
nities in the state in order to anticipate addi-                    marks. To date, 104 of the 351 communities                                                         Massachusetts and includes total population                                                    All decisions are local.
tional acceptance of a statewide initiative to pro-                 in Massachusetts have adopted the CPA.                                                             (2000), age, household income, educational                                                     Local people must vote by ballot to adopt the Act.
tect open space.                                                                                                                                                       attainment and home ownership. Our hy-                                                         Local legislatures must appoint a committee of lo-
                                                                                                                                                                       pothesis is that communities with higher val-                                                  cal people to draw up plans for use of the funds.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      These plans are subject to local comment and ap-
                                                                                                                                                                       ues of population, education, income and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      proval. If residents don’t feel the CPA is working
                                                                                                                                                                       home ownership will be more likely to support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      as they expected, they can repeal it.
                                                                                                                                                                       the CPA.
                                                                                                                                                                                                     Descriptive Statistics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Community Preservation Act provides new
                                                                                                                                                                                                 N         Minimum       Maximum         Mean      St d. Dev iation
                                                                                                                                                                        Med_Househ_Income            50       33750        107934       54638.90        13150.863     funding sources which can be used to address
                                                                                                                                                                        Age_35_44 y rs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      three core community concerns:
                                                                                                                                                                        Race_White                   50         415         37881        7846.98         8494.741
                                                                                                                                                                        Total_Pop                    50         426         40072        8371.96         9309.965
                                                                                                                                                                        Tenure (Owner-Occ
                                                                                                                                                                                                     50          146         10030       2221.84         2250.557
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Acquisition and preservation of open space
                                                                                                                                                                        Housing Units)
                                                                                                                                                                        Valid N (listwise)           50                                                                  Creation and support of affordable housing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Acquisition and preservation of historic buildings
                                                                                                                                                                       An independent samples t-test was employed                                                         and landscapes
                                                                    Southwick has an average household income                                                          to see if there is a significant difference be-
                                                                    of $52,296 (US), fourteen percent of the citi-                                                     tween communities adopting the CPA based on                                                                       (Source: Massachusetts Community Preservation Act)
                                                                    zens have a bachelors degree or higher,                                                            demographic characteristics. All variables were
                                                                    twenty one percent are between 35-44 years                                                         significant at the 0.01 level. The demographic
                                                                    of age, seventy six percent own their homes                                                        characteristics of Southwick are found to be
                                                                    and it is ninety seven percent white. South-                                                       consistent with this analysis. Similar towns will
                                                                    wick citizens favor open space procurement .                                                       likely adopt the CPA.
                                                                                                                Crosstab                                               Variable                  F value                 Significance                t-test
                                                                    Count                                                                                              Household                           7.398                     0.009                    3.061
                                                                                                                Recoded Residence
                                                                                                                                           21 or more
                                                                                            0-5 Years     5- 10 Years      11-20 Years       Years           Total
                                                                                                                                                                       BS or higher                       13.882                     0.001                    4.659
                                                                    Resident ial   Yes             27              19               20             31             97
                                                                    Growth         No              31              21               32             68            152   Age 35-44                          11.524                     0.001                    4.356
                                                                    Total                          58              40               52             99            249
                                                                                                                                                                       Population                         12.067                     0.001                    3.930
                                                                    A significant relationship is found between                                                        Own Home                            9.730                     0.003                    4.008

Southwick is a “bedroom” community of nine                          length of residence and a preference for resi-                                                                                        Group Statistics

thousand on the fringe between large metro-                         dential growth. Longer time residents appear                                                                                                                                         Std. Error

politan areas (Springfield, MA and Hartford, CT)                    to be against this. Gamma = 0.213 (p=0.05)                                                         Med_Househ_Income
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Std. Dev iat ion

and expansive public lands.       With a current
                                                                                                                                                                                              2                     25    49377.84         7511.313       1502.263
                                                                                                        Symmetric Measures                                             Bachelors_or_Higher    1                     25     2963.08         2294.788        458.958    Massachusetts Open Space Protection:
population of 9,000, should the community be                                                                                                                                                  2                     25      709.60          763.060        152.612    Massachusetts Community Preservation,
                                                                                                                             Asy mp.
                                                                                                                                      a           b                    Age_35_44 y rs         1                     25     2166.08         1607.466        321.493 
“built-out” to current zoning, we might find the                     Ordinal by Ordinal   Gamma
                                                                                                                            Std. Error
                                                                                                                                          Approx. T
                                                                                                                                                        Approx. Sig.
                                                                                                                                                                                              2                     25      649.00          669.951        133.990
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Community Preservation Act,
                                                                                                                                                                       Total_Pop              1                     25    12919.64        10768.966       2153.793
population peaking at 29,000! Given this poten-                      N of Valid Cases
                                                                        a. Not assuming the null hy pothesis.
                                                                                                                                                                                              2                     25     3824.28         4231.491        846.298 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Preservation Massachusetts,
tial, we selected this town as a case study.                            b. Using the asy mptotic standard error assuming the null hy pothesis.
                                                                                                                                                                       Tenure (Owner-Occ
                                                                                                                                                                       Housing Units)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Trust for Public Lands,
Author Contact Information:                                         DISCUSSION: This research has identified some of the characteristics that may define those                                                                                                        Citizens’ Housing and Planning Association,
                                                                    communities more likely to support the CPA. Communities with higher household income,                                                                                                          
Robert S. Bristow, Ph.D., Professor of Geography & Regional Plan-                                                                                                                                                                                                     Center for Rural Massachusetts,
ning and Interim Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs,      higher education, middle age, larger population and more likely to own homes were more likely                                                                                                  
Westfield State College, 577 Western Avenue, Westfield, MA 01086    to adopt the CPA. The data can be used to target the next communities that may have a fa-                                                                                                             Southwick Open Space and Recreation Demand Survey                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
                                                                    vorable acceptance of the Community Preservation Act.

To top