Field Projects

Field Projects integrates theory and practice by providing students with an opportunity to work on real-world challenges. Since 1977, UEP students have completed over 300 field projects with community groups, nonprofits, and local government agencies. These projects have focused on a variety of critical issues, such as housing, community development, water, parks and open space, energy, food, workforce development, and child development. A number of projects have influenced city and state policy, led to further project funding, and won prestigious awards.

Students conduct research and analysis and provide recommendations on priority issues to help advance the goals of Field Projects partners. The course is required of first-year UEP MA candidates during the spring semester. Field Projects covers many required competencies and offers a rich opportunity to apply theories, while honing problem-solving and other skills. Students work in teams of four and generally spend about 10 hours a week on their project. The work culminates in early May with a team presentation to the class, partner, and community.

If interested in reviewing Field Projects from earlier years, you can view them all at the Tisch Library Digital Collections and Archives.

MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning MS in Environmental Policy and Planning

Recent Field Projects

2023 Projects

Project: South Boston Waterfront District 2.0
Partner: Massachusetts Port Authority

Project: Optimizing Tax Revenue through Zoning Reform: A Case Study of the City of Brockton
Partner: Brockton Planning and Economic Development Department

Project: Agricultural Land Use Conservation in Environmental Justice Communities across the North Shore
Partner: Greenbelt Essex County’s Land Trust

Project: A Rising Tide: Planning for Resilient Roadway Access in Barnstable, Mattapoisett, and Quincy, MA
Partner: Woods Hole Group

Project: Exploring Climate Gentrification in Massachusetts
Partner: Conservation Law Foundation

Project: The Water Remembers Historical Wetlands & Stormwater: Flooding in the MAPC Region
Partner: Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC)

Project: Walk this Way: A Conditions and Needs Assessment of Davis Square
Partner: Somerville Alliance for Safe Streets (SASS)

Project: Digging in for the Long Haul: Examining Somerville Community Growing Center’s Reach, Community Impact, and Justice
Partner: Somerville Community Growing Center

Project: Exploring Urban Ecology: Closing the Gap & Enhancing Urban Biodiversity in the Town of Arlington
Partner: Town of Arlington

Project: Breaking Down Barriers: Supporting Equitable Access to Moakley Park
Partner: Boston Harbor Now

Project: Opportunities for Decarbonizing Small Residential Buildings in Massachusetts
Partner: Massachusetts Clean Energy Center

Project: Moving the Needle: Evaluating Affordable Housing Trust Funds in Massachusetts
Partner: Massachusetts Housing Partnership (MHP)

2022 Projects

Project: Mapping Community Engagement: The Co-Design of Union Square Plaza
Partner: Design Studio for Social Intervention (DS4SI) 

Project: There’s No Place Like Ames: A redesign to create a safe and welcoming park in Lynn, MA
Partner: City of Lynn

Project: Growing in Revere: Recommendations for Community Food System Development
Partner: Revere on the Move, City of Revere Department of Community Health, Revere CARES Coalition

Project: Beyond a Seat at the Table: Building a Food Coalition Centering Environmental Justice Communities on the North Shore
Partner: Green Beverly

Project: Building Climate Resiliency in Mattapan
Partner: Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW)

Project: An Evaluation and Oversight Framework for Participatory Budgeting in Boston
Partner: Center for Economic Democracy (CED)

Project: Blue Carbon Capture: A Feasibility Study of Cutting-Edge Techniques to Help Meet Massport’s Climate Action Goals 

Companion Document: Blue Carbon Capture: A Handbook for the Development of Demonstration-Scale Blue Carbon Capture Projects 
Partner: Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport)

Project: Eyes on the Drive: Assessing the Human Experience of Car-Free Urban Design
Partner: The Human Architecture & Planning Institute (HAPI)

Project: A Road to A Greener Devens: Implementing Green and Complete Streets Policy on Goddard Street
Partner: The Devens Enterprise Commission

Project: Reimagining Bridge Street
Partner: Town of Weymouth, MA

Project: Paying for Community Control of Land: Financing and Funding Strategies for Comunidades Enraizadas Community Land Trust
Partner: Comunidades Enraizadas Cooperative and GreenRoots

Project: Evaluating Traditionally Excluded Communities on Their Preparedness to Implement Participatory Community Solar
Partner: Solstice Initiative

Project: Fostering Mutually Beneficial Partnerships in Climate Planning and Action in Massachusetts
Partner: Massachusetts Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program (MVP), Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

2021 Projects

Project: A Trail of Two Towns: Assessing the Applicability of the Trail Town Program in Athol and Orange, MA
Partner: Towns of Athol and Orange, MA

Project: Building Climate Resiliency and Justice in Dorchester
Partner: VietAID

Project: City of Somerville Community Preservation Act: Program Evaluation
Partner: City of Somerville

Project: Measuring the Impacts of the Boston Neighborhood Community Land Trust
Partner: Boston Neighborhood Community Land Trust

Project: Building with Lower Embodied Carbon
Partner: MA Clean Energy Center

Project: Beyond Common Concerns: Investigating 40B Developments in Massachusetts
Partner: Citizens Housing and Planning Association

Project: Prioritizing Massachusetts Childcare Workers: An Examination of the Potential Benefits of Worker Cooperatives
Partner: Community Labor United

Project: No Waste to Spare: An Economic and Spatial Analysis of Massachusetts’ Reuse Economy
Partner: MA Department of Environmental Protection

Project: Public Housing in Massachusetts: Process, Implementation, and Applicant Responsiveness
Partner: MA Department of Housing and Community Development

Project: Rebuilding Broadway: Retail Vacancy on East Somerville’s Main Street
Partner: East Somerville Main Streets

Project: Placemaking Strategies and Opportunities Along Salem Street, Medford, MA
Partner: City of Medford

Project: Coastal Resiliency: Climate Adaptation Planning for Provincetown’s Historic District
Partner: Town of Provincetown

2020 Projects

Project: A Fairway Forward: Golf Course Conversions in Canton, Massachusetts
Partner: Town of Canton, MA

Project: What Counts in Mobility: Improving Planning Tools for a Multi-Modal Future
Partner: LivableStreets Alliance

Project: Green Jobs for Green Homes: Job Training for Building Retrofits in Somerville
Partner: Somerville Community Corporation

Project: MassRoutes: Developing a GIS-Based Screening Tool for Equity Centered Clean Transportation Investments in Massachusetts
Partner: Union of Concerned Scientists

Project: Cracking the Code: How Boston is Trying to Address Child Care through Zoning
Partner: Community Labor United

Project: A Review of Structural Racism and the Built Environment in Massachusetts
Partner: Mass in Motion


Project: Reed & Barton Reimagined: Exploring the Redevelopment Potential of a Former Industrial Site in Norton, Massachusetts
Partner: Town of Norton, MA

Project: Four Centuries Young: The Case for a Planning Department in Winthrop
Partner: Town of Winthrop, MA

Project: Mucking Around the Marsh: Resiliency Techniques and Recommendations for Marshland Management
Partner: Great Marsh Partnership

2019 Reports

Project: Athol Solar Zoning Bylaw Assessment
Partner: Town of Athol, MA

Project: More Than Bike Lanes: From Bike Equity to Bike Justice in Greater Boston
Partner: Boston Cyclists Union

Project: Understanding Family, Friend, and Neighbor Care in Massachusetts
Partner: Community Labor United

Project: Reclaiming the Rules of Land Use: Demystifying Zoning as an Anti-Displacement Strategy
Partner: Greater Boston Community Land Trust Network

Project: Up against the Wall: Barriers and Incentives for Dam Removal
Partner: Ipswich River Watershed Association

Project: Activating Columbia Road: Reframing a Missing Link
Partner: LivableStreets Alliance

Project: Organics Diversion in the City of Medford, MA
Partner: City of Medford, MA

Project: Nature-based Solutions in the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program
Partner: MassAudubon and The Nature Conservancy

Project: Priced Out: The Future of Graduate and Faculty Housing at Tufts
Partner: Office of Dean of Student Affairs and Campus Planning and Development Committee

2018 Reports

Project: Wasted: A Greenhouse Gas Inventory of Food Waste
Partner: Metropolitan Area Planning Council, Department of Clean Energy, Boston, MA

Project: Clean Green Driving Machines: Reducing Municipal Vehicle Fuel Consumption
Partner: Mass Department of Energy Resources, Green Communities Division

Project: Supporting Small Scale Food Manufacturing: An Analysis of Challenges and Opportunities
Partner: CommonWealth Kitchen

Project: Imagining CoHo
Partner: Tufts University Office of Campus Planning

Project: Soil in the City
Partner: Urban Farming Institute

Project: Engaging the City
Partner: The City of Boston, Housing Innovation Lab

Project: Growing the Mystic River Greenways
Partner: Mystic River Watershed Association (MyRWA)

Project: Replanting Metro Boston's Roofs
Partner: Recover Green Roofs

2017 Reports

Project: Pathways to Transfer Private Housing to Permanent Affordability
Partner: Greater Boston Community Land Trust Network

Project: Fostering a Local Food Economy in Revere, MA: Food Business Growth and Community Engagement
Partner: Revere on the Move

Project: Analyzing Risk of Displacement and Affordable Housing Opportunities in Southwest Boston
Partner: Southwest Boston Community Development Corporation

Project: Lowell Restorative Justice Hub: Building Community Coalitions
Partner: Our Restorative Justice

Project: On the Hook: Supporting a Healthy Fishing Future in Massachusetts
Awarded the 2017 Outstanding Planning Award for Best Student Project from the American Planning Association, Massachusetts Chapter
Partner: Fishing Partnership

Project: Charles River Conservancy Swim Park Project
Partner: Charles River Conservancy

Project: CAAS and Its Community: A Dissemination Plan for Somerville
Partner: Community Action Agency of Somerville

Project: Taking a Bite: Food Business Preservation in Union Square, Somerville
Partner: Somerville Arts Council Nibble

2016 Reports

Project: Envisioning a Cultural District for Chelsea
Partner: Chelsea Department of Planning & Development

Project: The Potential for Community-Shared Solar in Massachusetts: Expanding Access to Low and Moderate Income Households
Partner: Community Labor United & Green Justice Coalition 

Project: The Case for Community Land Trusts: Building a Livable Boston & Mattapan Study of Community and Gentrification
Partner: Greater Boston Community Land Trust Network

Project: Greening Somerville
Partner: Groundwork Somerville

Project: Roslindale Arboretum Gateway Path: A Community Vision
Partner: LivableStreets, WalkUp Roslindale

Project: Transition-Age Youth in Massachusetts
Partner: Luk, Inc.

Project: Massachusetts Food Access Index: A Pilot Method for Assessing Food Access in the Commonwealth
Partner: Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Project: Medford Conversations: New Opportunities for Inclusion
Partner: Medford Conversations, Medford Community Coalition

Project: Reimagining Johnson Park: A Design Proposal for Swampscott, MA
Partner: Town of Swampscott