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DEDHAM, MA-JPI, a Dallas-Texas-based development company is planning to file a proposal to develop a 300-unit apartment complex with an affordable housing component here on Rustcraft Road on a 12-acre site currently owned by R.K. Associates.

Arthur Noonan, the town planner, tells GlobeSt.com that while JPI has not filed a formal proposal yet it has indicated to the town its intention to file a Chapter 40B application, which allows a developer to bypass local zoning laws if the proposed development has at least a 25% affordable housing component in a town that does not have at least 10% affordable housing. Noonan says that Dedham currently has 3.9% affordable housing.

The town has already approved a 40B application about two years ago for a 95-unit assisted living complex, which is currently under construction. It is also in the process of considering two other Chapter 40B proposals, one of which is a 61-unit senior housing development. “The intention of Chapter 40B is to promote construction of affordable housing,” points out Noonan. “If for years there hasn’t been affordable housing in a town and suddenly a 40B is submitted, people say, we established this zoning. How can they not abide by it?” But Noonan adds that many local residents feel that the JPI proposal is too large and is being located in an area the town was hoping would be developed as an office and research and development area.

Noonan says that despite the Chapter 40B aspect of this proposal–which allows a developer to appeal a rejection by a local zoning board to the state–it’s not clear that the project will ultimately end up as it is currently being proposed. “We consider each proposal on its individual merit,” notes Noonan. “There are those issues that have to be dealt with.

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