Topics: Affordable housing

ORLEANS – The developer behind a plan to bring more than 40 units of housing to the site of the former Underground Mall off Route 6A hopes to break ground on the project by spring. With approval from the town's Old King's Highway Historic District Committee earlier this month, Chris DeSisto of Maple Hurst Builders will next bring the proposed 42-unit rental development before the Cape Cod Commission for review...

ORLEANS — Low-income housing tax credits have been awarded to the Pennrose housing development planned for the site of the former Cape Cod Five headquarters on West Road. The project is one of 26 across 16 towns statewide to receive financing through the tax credits, the Baker-Polito Administration announced July 26. In total, $50 million in direct funding and $89 million in tax credits are being allocated acr...

ORLEANS – With financing in place, local review has begun of plans to bring affordable housing to the site of the former Masonic Lodge at 107 Main St. The zoning board of appeals opened its review of the project at its July 20 meeting. Members opted to continue the hearing to Sept. 7, where the board could vote on whether or not to issue a comprehensive permit. The town purchased the 1.3-acre parcel in 2020...

ORLEANS – Three months out from October's special town meeting, the select board still has plenty of work ahead of it in crafting a short-term rental bylaw for voters' consideration. The board has been working with Town Counsel Michael Ford in recent months to craft a bylaw to better regulate the operation of short-term rentals in residential neighborhoods. Of particular concern is the increased commercializat...

Looking back, Scott MacDonald realizes how fortunate he was to have bought his home in Brewster in 1999. "We paid just under $180,000 for that home, and I'll tell you, we worked really hard," said MacDonald, Orleans' chief of police. "We're very proud we were able to pay our mortgage and raise a wonderful family there." But the cost of housing has reached unprecedented heights on the Cape, and many police o...

Housing Crisis Weighs On Nauset Schools

By: Ryan Bray

EASTHAM – Speaking to his fellow Orleans Select Board members last week, Mark Mathison recalled when the existing Nauset Regional High School was built, a "slew" of teachers were hired to round out staff at the new building and what is now Nauset Regional Middle School. When they came, they had a place to find housing, he said. "In fact, that whole development off of Millstone Road in Brewster was 80 percent t...

ORLEANS – The needs of any town are multi-faceted. On Cape Cod, affordable housing, wastewater treatment and protection of open space often top the list. But that doesn't mean those needs have to compete against one another. That's the philosophy behind Grow Smart Cape Cod, a new data-driven program that uses interactive mapping to help communities prioritize future projects in those areas. The program, whi...

ORLEANS – They didn't pass quietly, but articles to secure construction funding for Meetinghouse Pond sewer work and adopt a new sewer assessment bylaw garnered voter approval during Monday night's annual town meeting. The bylaw, which calls for sewer costs downtown and in the area of Meetinghouse Pond to be split between the tax rate (80 percent) and users who will tie into the new sewer system (20 percent), ...

ORLEANS – Habitat For Humanity Cape Cod wants to bring more density to the homes it builds locally on the Cape, but could this new model work within plans for the Governor Prence Inn property? The town's affordable housing committee met with representatives from Habitat For Humanity May 3, which led to a discussion among committee members about how affordable housing should factor into plans for the 5.5-acre p...

ORLEANS – They didn't pass quietly, but articles to secure construction funding for Meetinghouse Pond sewer work and adopt a new sewer assessment bylaw garnered voter approval during Monday night's annual town meeting. The bylaw, which calls for sewer costs downtown and in the area of Meetinghouse Pond to be split between the tax rate (80 percent) and users who will tie into the new sewer system (20 percent), ...

ORLEANS – Sitting at her desk Friday on her first official day as the Lower Cape Outreach Council's new CEO, Katie Wibby is well aware that there is much to be done. First hired in January as the council's chief operating officer, Wibby now sits at the helm of an organization that for years has helped provide emergency financial relief and other resources to families in need on the Lower and Outer Cape. "We...

ORLEANS – Can equity in sewer betterments be achieved for users downtown and in the area of Meetinghouse Pond? If the select board's public hearing on the matter March 9 is any indication, it doesn't seem likely. "I think what we can take away from all of this is there is no fair and equitable way to assess a betterment in this town," Finance Director Cathy Doane told the board at the conclusion of the two-hou...

ORLEANS – Town officials want to have all of the information they need in place if and when the time comes to demolish the existing Governor Prence Inn buildings. The select board and the affordable housing trust board, which together co-own the 5.5-acre property on Route 6A, voted during a joint meeting Jan. 18 to begin the process of undertaking site reconstruction and a topological survey, funding for which...

ORLEANS – The select board wants clarity on the town's insurance policy on the Governor Prence Inn buildings, which Town Administrator John Kelly said the town could be at risk of losing. Kelly told the board Jan. 12 that he received communication from Lloyd's of London, which is insuring the building, that the town has 45 days to make needed repairs to the property, otherwise it could risk losing its $1 milli...

ORLEANS – The Underground Mall off Route 6A has been vacant for years. But Chris DeSisto sees parking inside the existing buildings and landscaped greenspace breaking up the expansive pavement. More than anything, however, he sees an opportunity to provide moderately-priced housing to people in and around Orleans who need it. DeSisto, owner of Maple Hurst Builders, presented preliminary plans for building w...

A new year comes with New Year's resolutions, and officials in Chatham, Orleans and Harwich aren't short of them for 2022. We asked select board members from each of the three towns what's topping their list of legislative priorities this year. Perhaps not surprisingly, the creation of housing was almost universally cited as an ongoing need among officials in each community. "I'd hate to talk about anything...