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Undergraduate Degree: Boston University
Areas of interest:Transportation
Mentor:Paul Scapicchio, Mintz Levin Strategies
Agency:Mayor's Office of Strategic Planning and Community Development
Supervisor:Melisa Tintocalis, Principal, Economic Development Planning
Project Description:Kathleen Ziegenfuss, an MIT Master of City Planning Candidate, researched various economic development tools the City of Somerville could use to help prepare for the impact of the MBTA Green Line extension from Lechmere Station into Union Square. Chief among the tools studied was the potential of using an Urban Renewal Plan for the redevelopment of the Boynton Yards and Union Square districts. Issues considered were: existing land uses and current conditions; the transportation-specific impacts of the Union Square Green Line Extension; the greater vision for the area; the community involvement process; the potential of using the Urban Renewal Plan in conjunction with a District Improvement Financing (DIF) plan; and the compatibility of land uses with the proposed rezoning of Union Square (which includes the provision of the Transit Oriented Development districts that cover much of the area being considered for the Urban Renewal Plan). The work Kathleen completed will allow the City to move forward in a community visioning process to help shape the future of the greater Union Square district.