2017 Candidate Statement:
Dennis is a two-term, progressive Cambridge City Councillor, first elected in 2013. He and his wife, Katie, moved to Cambridge 43 years ago and raised both their sons here. With over forty years of experience as a professional architect and urban designer, Dennis brings an indispensable, unique expertise to the Council in the policy area over which it has the most direct control: zoning and new development. Dennis has personally designed and planned over 500 successful affordable and mixed-income housing units in Massachusetts according to the input and desires of the people living in those communities. He is the only Councillor and candidate with this type and level of hands-on experience that has helped neighborhoods flourish and meet their public space, retail, and housing needs.
He puts this expertise to good use on the council, and as co-chair of the Ordinance Committee, by promoting economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable and equitable development. Since joining the Council, Dennis has worked closely with fourteen different neighborhood groups to help them guide the future of their rapidly growing Cambridge neighborhoods according to their own needs and self-determined goals. He knows how to work with diverse communities and find a solution that benefits everyone involved. The son of a union carpenter and first in his family to attend college, Dennis knows he has been blessed in life and wants to give back in kind. Each phase of his life, public and private, has focused on promoting the public good. This work is never-ending and Dennis is seeking a third term to continue the progress he initiated.
Professional and Council Accomplishments
- American Institute of Architects award for Excellence in Urban design for his design and implementation of the East Cambridge Riverfront Plan. This project revitalized a forty-acre swath of underutilized, decaying land along the riverfront into a thriving, mixed-use community and earned the support of the East Cambridge neighborhood planning team while attiring over a billion dollars’ worth of investment.
- Designed over 500 successful affordable and mixed-income housing units
- Assisted fourteen neighborhood groups in zoning, design review, public space design, and local retail enhancement efforts.
- Led efforts to expand affordable housing by increasing zoning requirements for inclusionary housing and adding a dedicated affordable housing line item to the city budget.
- Passed Cambridge’s plastic bag ban, approved NetZero environmental sustainability guidelines, and lowered neighborhood speed limits to 25 and 20 mph.
- Fought for and sponsored Cambridge’s city-wide Master Plan, now being implemented.
Vision for the future
All of the following items, taken together, are a part of Dennis’ longer-term, big picture vision to make Cambridge an even more welcoming, diverse, equitable, walkable, and advanced city that lives up to its reputation and community values.
- Review all options to overcome Cambridge’s current housing crisis. This includes equitable zoning reform guided by urban design best practices, cost effective construction, requiring our local universities meeting their dormitory needs, increasing the amount of city funds dedicated to affordable housing efforts.
- Implementing the city-wide Master Plan to serve social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Under this plan, Cambridge can continue to grow without overwhelming its existing neighborhoods and better integrate existing public transit into its urban fabric.
- Require 50% residential space above the ground floor in all new developments in Cambridge’s major squares. Any project seeking a special permit would need to have 50% of its street frontage space dedicated to small, local retail.
- Fully implement the Vision Zero plan to make Cambridge’s streets as safe and efficient as possible for pedestrians, cyclists, and cars.
- Upgrade and expand public open space designs to provide a community benefit to Cambridge’s entire population, from families with children, to professionals on their lunch breaks, to college students.
- Work with Cambridge’s local universities to ensure they build enough graduate student housing on their own land to decrease the number of students who must compete with Cambridge families for the limited, reasonably-priced housing nearby.
- Reform local elections with publicly financed municipal campaigns. Dennis refuses to accept donations from large real estate developers or special interests. He has returned one such donation this cycle.
Thank you, Cambridge! Please VOTE #1 FOR DENNIS CARLONE on November 7th!
Our Revolution - National
Our Revolution Cambridge
Cambridge Residents Alliance
Democratic Socialists of America - Boston
Massachusetts Voters for Animals
State Rep. Mike Connolly
CCTV candidate video (2017)
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