Lawmakers push for more affordable housing options in rural parts of state

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – Governor Charlie Baker is hoping to build more affordable housing units in urban parts of the state, but what about cities and towns in rural areas?

In a future of work-study that was released on Tuesday, one of the top priorities that the Baker Administration highlighted was a need for affordable housing. Baker hopes to commit $1 billion to build at least 125,000 new housing units by 2030. Most of those new units will be in communities of color which means they will likely be in urban or suburban areas, leaving rural towns out in the cold.

“The state often has criteria that will not prioritize a smaller number of units, and so honestly we’ve been working to try to fix the whole spectrum of the housing development process which has disadvantaged small towns for sure,” Senator Hinds told 22News.

Senator Hinds says Berkshire County, similar to Cape Cod is struggling to provide affordable housing options for service workers that come to the region for seasonal work. Another thing that many western MA lawmakers believe could fix the state’s housing crisis is a rail service from Springfield to Boston.

That proposal is still under consideration.

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