University of British Columbia, Canada
Vivien Li, Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member
Office of Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu
Michelle Wu, Boston City Councilor
Description of Fellowship
Collyn’s fellowship was with the Office of Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu where she worked on a report for the upcoming East Boston Master Plan process. An historically low-income and immigrant community, East Boston’s most pressing challenges include accelerated housing development, housing affordability and displacement, high risk of flooding and sea-level rise, and high barriers to civic participation from its non-English speaking population. The focus of the project was to build an understanding of what East Boston community members envision for their future, and the values and policies that should drive the master planning process. Through interviews with local organizations and municipal staff, a survey of over 150 community members, site visits and an analysis of existing and comparable policies – Collyn developed a final report and set of policy and process recommendations for city council and municipal offices to prioritize. The report informs actions that can be taken to address cross-cutting policy areas, including the creation of affordable housing units, adequate zoning and financial requirements for district-level climate impacts, and increasing immigrant and minority participation in civic process.