Enabling our city to thrive over the coming generations and expanding access to opportunity requires innovative ideas and initiatives. By harnessing the robust growth and economic dynamism of Boston today, we can make our city a place of unparalleled economic and social opportunities for people of all races, genders, and incomes.
Shaped by the input of over 15,000 residents and unveiled by Mayor Walsh in 2017, Imagine Boston 2030 is the first citywide plan in over 50 years. Imagine Boston 2030 prioritizes inclusionary growth and puts forth a comprehensive vision to enhance neighborhoods, encourage a mixed-use core, support employment and housing growth, create a waterfront that sustains future generations, and concentrate investments to reduce disparities and expand opportunities.
Boston is uniquely positioned to guide inclusive growth and shape a thriving city for the next generation. Imagine Boston 2030 draws from this history of leadership and ingenuity to invite Bostonians to shape our future. Our mutual vision has created this document—a road map—to continue to build Boston as an equitable and inclusive for coming generations.
There are six key opportunities and challenges that frame our approach to create a better Boston by 2030:
Boston’s economy has grown on the strength of its small businesses and vibrant healthcare, education, and finance sectors. These sectors have enabled Boston to bounce back from recent economic shocks. Continued growth and diversification of Boston’s economy will be critical for the city to thrive during the economic transformations of the future.
Boston’s population is growing rapidly and has become more diverse. Today, the city is majority people of color and more than a quarter of Boston residents were born outside of the United States. This population growth is a reflection of Boston's economic vitality and a testament to the city's diversity.
There are significant disparities in educational attainment, homeownership, commute times, access to healthy food and health care, and a number of other factors. These factors are correlated with major health outcomes and wealth gaps between races and neighborhoods.
Housing prices have increased rapidly in recent years and many low and middle-income residents are concerned about affordability and displacement in the neighborhoods they have called home for generations.
Boston is the fourth most exposed city in the nation to flooding. Temperature increases, more extreme weather events, and rising sea levels pose significant risks for Boston’s highly urbanized coastal job centers and neighborhoods. In this century, flooding, storms, and extreme heat will be exacerbated by climate change.
The way we interact with the city is changing. Traditional home/work and downtown/neighborhood boundaries are changing as preferences for mixed-use neighborhoods increase and technology enables rapid remote communication and new ways of working and getting around the city.