Promoting Smart Growth & Regional Planning
MAPC Technical Assistance Program (TAP)
The MAPC Technical Assistance Program (TAP) is a funding program that enables and assists municipalities in implementing projects that are beneficial to the community. Municipalities are invited to submit project concepts for work to be undertaken by MAPC through our Technical Assistance Program (TAP).
What's New: 2018 Call for Concepts
Through our July 2018 Call for Project Concepts, we are soliciting ideas for projects that will commence in the summer/fall of 2018. At this time, due to funds generously granted to MAPC by the Barr Foundation, we are particularly able to address project ideas in the following categories. However, municipalities should feel free to suggest projects that meet other needs as well.
Arts and Cultural Planning and Creative Placemaking
Project ideas that engage arts, culture, and creativity to advance municipal and regional planning objectives - revitalizing neighborhoods, downtowns, village centers, or old industrial sites. These projects should also have a focus on making the community more livable, vibrant, and resilient.
Projects can include creative placemaking, creative community development, cultural asset mapping, cultural planning, arts and cultural data collection and analysis, arts and cultural policy, and projects engaging arts and culture to advance equity and inclusion, including those that use creative approaches to engaging constituencies that are traditionally under-represented in the planning process. For examples of current projects, please click here.
Equitable Transit-Oriented Development
Projects that focus on redevelopment opportunities around subway, light rail, commuter rail, bus rapid transit, or key bus routes. The projects must include an emphasis on affordable or mixed-income housing, mixed-use development (residential along with commercial or industrial), and/or economic development in smart growth areas with the option to request market analyses for the study area. These planning processes generally include meaningful community engagement especially in under-represented populations; along with focuses in public health, minimizing displacement and/or clean energy improvements.
Last year, MAPC released its five-year update to the State of Equity in Metro Boston Indicators Report. With this round of technical assistance funding, MAPC is particularly interested in seeing projects that help to break down barriers to equity on issues such as housing, economic mobility, public health, public safety, and the integration of marginalized populations. For example, we would be interested in projects that advance policies designed to revitalize low-income neighborhoods without displacing the residents already there, while also opening up high-opportunity communities to a broader range of people.
Submit an Application
MAPC issues direct calls for applications twice a year. Awards are made on a rolling basis pending the availability of funding, with a batch of awards often made in the late fall and early spring.
Read the most recent July 2018 Call for Projects
Criteria for Project Selection
At MAPC we try our best to fund as many projects that are in accordance with the guidelines as possible through our technical assistance resources or state grant programs. Projects that align with MetroFuture: Making a Greater Boston region and involves the advancement of regional land use, policy plans, equity within the region and municipal collaboration usually have a higher chance of being selected.
After concepts are submitted, we will work with the applicant to determine the best funding source(s) based on the specific ideas you present and the timetable and criteria of the funding sources that are best suited for the work.
Approved projects are awarded a funding allocation that is based on an assessment of anticipated tasks. If MAPC cannot fully fund the project, we will work with the municipality (or municipalities) to achieve additional funding from other sources. Most awards will draw upon a variety of funding sources – including DLTA, PMTA, grants from private foundations, leveraged grants from state programs, and fee-for-service contributions.
Selected projects are assigned to a Project Manager, who works with municipalities to develop detailed scopes of work.
Contact Ralph Willmer if you have questions about the application process and the status of your submittal. Feel free to reach out to the subregional coordinator serving your municipality or MAPC department and division managers and directors to discuss a potential project.
Technical assistance program (TAP)
MAPC sees our Technical Assistance Program as a means to help cities, towns, and the Commonwealth to implement local, regional, and state goals. Generally speaking, we give preference to projects that advance the regional land use and policy plan, MetroFuture: Making a Greater Boston Region and the planning priorities identified in the agency’s current Strategic Plan. We also give preference to projects that align with the state priorities.
TAP Funding Sources
The District Local Technical Assistance (DLTA) Program funded annually by the Legislature and the Governor through a state appropriation. The program is administered by each of the state’s 13 Regional Planning Agencies (RPAs), which together cover the Commonwealth’s 351 cities and towns. Beginning in 2016, MAPC partnered with the Baker Administration to give a portion of funds towards projects aligning with Community Compact Best Practices. DLTA projects run through the calendar year (January – December).
The Planning for MetroFuture Technical Assistance (PMTA) Program administered by MAPC and is funded by municipal assessments. It serves the 101 cities and towns in our region and aims to advance the implementation of projects that align with the goals and objectives in the MetroFuture regional plan and the priorities identified in the MAPC Strategic Plan. PMTA projects run through the fiscal year (July – June).
The Community Compact Cabinet (CCC)* is made possible through the Baker’s Administration’s Best Practices Program, the Efficiency and Regionalization Grant Program, and the Information Technology Grant Program. This program reflects the Baker Administration’s partnerships with cities and towns. The Cabinet gages municipal interests across all executive secretariats and agencies to develop mutual standards and best practices for both the state and municipalities. *Cities and towns apply directly to the Baker Administration for CCC funding and can engage MAPC as a technical assistance provider.
The Barr Foundation has provided generous funding and support in several project areas, including arts and culture, equitable transit-oriented development (E-TOD), mobility, and climate adaptation.
MAPC utilizes all of these sources of funding and actively fund raise - in addition to municipal fee-for-service contributions, in-kind resources from municipalities and partners, and grant funding - to enable our staff to provide technical assistance to municipalities on a variety of planning, procurement, and shared services projects.