I am not able to think clearly enough to write something that makes sense, but if you’ve been following the Chapter 91 issue, this is good news, indeed.

Basically, there is a regulation in Massachusetts that any development in or near tidelands is subject to an additional environmental review.

Earlier this year, the Supreme Judicial Court decided that any land, which could be as much as a mile (or more) from bodies of water, are subject to the regulations.

Meaning projects in neighborhoods such as East Cambridge and Dorchester could be ruled invalid.

Fortunately, the state legislature today passed a law to make it easier for developments to go forward, while protecting the tidelands from any environmental dangers.

See, I told you I couldn’t make sense.

Today the Massachusetts House of Representatives voted 147 to 3 to approve legislation regarding Ch91 Landlocked Tidelands.

This legislation was filed by Governor Patrick in February in an attempt to restore the ability of developers to build in filled, landlocked tidelands without specific Legislative approval for each project after a ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. In July the House and Senate approved different versions of the bill and a Conference Committee was appointed to resolve the differences.

Under this compromise legislation, the Secretary of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EOEEA) will conduct a “public benefit review” for any project geographically located on landlocked tidelands that is required to file an environmental impact report. This review will become part of the public record.

Developers also will be required to assess the impact of a project on public access and groundwater levels if the project is located in previously identified low groundwater level area. EOEEA will establish regulations governing this process which may be combined with the existing environmental reviews.

While the compromise bill will add another layer of review, it will not require every Chapter 91 license to be approved by the Legislature as was originally under consideration.

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John Ford
John Ford

Over the course of 20 years in the Boston downtown real estate market, John represented and sold numerous, condominiums, investment and development properties in Greater Boston and in the surrounding suburbs

In addition to representing Boston condo buyers and sellers, John is currently one of the most recognized Boston condo blog writers regarding Boston condominiums and residential real estate markets. John's insights and observations about the Boston condo market have been seen in a wide variety of the most established local & national media outlets including; Banker and Tradesman, Boston Magazine The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and NewsWeek and Fortune magazine, among others.


For over 24 years, John Ford, of Ford Realty Inc., has been actively involved in the real estate industry. He started his career in commercial real estate with a national firm Spaulding & Slye and quickly realized that he had a passion for residential properties. In 1999, John entered the residential real estate market, and in 2000 John Started his own firm Ford Realty Inc. As a broker, his clients have come to love his fun, vivacious, and friendly attitude. He prides himself on bringing honesty and integrity to the entire home buying and selling process. In addition to helping buyers and sellers, he also works with rental clients. Whether you’re looking to purchase a new Boston condo or rent an apartment, you’ll quickly learn why John has a 97% closing rate.


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John Ford and his staff can be reached at 617-595-3712 or 617-720-5454. Please feel free to stop by John's Boston Beacon Hill office located at 137 Charles Street.

John Ford
Ford Realty Inc
137 Charles Street
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