Eric J. Russo
Sunderland is a farming town with a beautiful display of green located off of I-91 in the
Western part of Massachusetts.
The town is part of a larger community, Franklin County, a
county with 26 towns.
According to the last census in 2000 the population of Sunderland was
In this small town there are only 765 families and 1,633 households.
transportation there are buses growing in and out of the town and also the Amherst Amtrak train
Sunderland is 14.4 square miles of land and 0.4 square miles of water and is
located on the east bank of the Connecticut River.
Other features in the town include Mt. Toby
which is known for its waterfalls and in the town adjacent to Sunderland, Deerfield, there is
In an aerial view of Sunderland one will see a lot of opened fields for
farming and a lot of trees, a truly beautiful sight.(“Sunderland, Massachusetts (MA 01375)
profile: population, maps, real estate, averages, homes, statistics, relocation, travel, jobs,
hospitals, schools, crime, moving, houses, news”)
The focus of my project is to get to the bottom of Sunderland’s decreasing population.
Because of this decrease in population and the lack of affordable housing, Sunderland is under
the Massachusetts 40b housing project.
What is being done under this project and also what the
future plans are to prevent this from happening again is a main following point.
As a case study I
am also going to discuss the sugar bush meadows complex controversy, for it is a perfect case
going on right now which relates directly to my main focus.
The town in the last decade has
gone through some very frustrating times; it has almost 0 percent affordable housing, and while
the median house value is above the state average the renting percentage is also higher.
is really sticking around to fall with Sunderland, why would they?
Although the times are rough
it is possible to get things back on track again, and my goal is to find out how and what
Sunderland is doing for this change.
Sunderland’s decrease in population isn’t something that just currently arose; it’s been a
problem for a little over a decade.
With this said, for a little over a decade the town has been
trying to gets its affordable housing above 10 percent.
Once this is accomplished they are still