Cambridge Conversations

Cambridge Conversations are the precursor to Cambridge’s citywide comprehensive plan process. Before the community launches into a multi-year process, we need a moment to talk, exchange ideas, and think about the best way to set up a process for the plan. These initial conversations are open ended discussions to hear concerns, thoughts, and ideas about the plan and process. The City has hired Kathryn Madden of the Madden Planning Group to help facilitate the Cambridge Conversations. Kathryn has extensive experience with both comprehensive planning and community engagement.

Email To sign up to receive updates on Cambridge Conversations, please click here.

In June 2014, community meetings and workshops were scheduled around the city.  If you could not attend a meeting or have not yet commented on line, there will be many more opportunities to participate over the next two years. Since we need to hear many voices, everyone can help get the word out and encourage others to participate, especially those who may not have easy access. In a city with 105,000 people, we will need to explore the best way to reach a broad cross section of people, testing a variety of techniques and platforms that communicate in different ways.

You can use this form to send us your thoughts and comments on the comprehensive plan and process.

A city-wide comprehensive plan is an exciting endeavor, a time to take stock of where we are today and to consider what kind of city we want to be in the future. Over the next couple of years, we will have the opportunity to discuss our shared values and aspirations. Focused research and data will help inform the dialogue. With ongoing, engaged participation, we will be able to consider the implications of different decisions and create a guide for the long term, sustainable future of Cambridge. A shared plan can be used to inform City decisions as well as decisions made by businesses, property owners, non-profit organizations, institutions, and residents.

If you have ideas that will help shape the comprehensive plan process in Cambridge, please be sure to stay tuned for Fall 2014, as we continue to discuss issues and priorities and begin to define the scope of the master plan and the selection process for a consultant team to work with the community.

Bring your ideas! Whether we get together to talk in a park, online, or at a meeting, we look forward to a lively conversation. 

Preliminary Cambridge Conversations Report Released

Cambridge Conversations: Preliminary Summary of Process and Input Report has been released and is being conveyed to the City Council's at the July 28 Council meeting. This report provides a summary of the work thus far and lays out next steps in the Cambridge Conversations phase of the project.  Share your thoughts at our Community Forum

The Cambridge Conversations have begun

Check the Schedule tab for the current schedule of meetings. Find a location and time that works for you. If you can’t make it to any of these meetings in June, don’t worry. Send an email to and we’d be happy to schedule a time to come to your neighborhood group or other meeting later this summer or fall.

There are many ways to join the conversation

  • Attend a Community Meeting
    Three community meetings are scheduled to allow people to select a time and location that is most convenient. Each meeting will follow the same format. They are designed for listening and sharing ideas together as a group. There will be an informal open house; a brief introduction to our current conversations and how these relate to the future master plan; an interactive work session to allow people to share their ideas in casual conversation; and a wrap-up to talk about next steps. 
  • Stop by at a Drop-In Session
    Over 17 drop-in sessions are available at different times and locations across the city. Each drop-in session has the same format. These are planned to make access more convenient for those who prefer to drop by briefly for informal conversations that may last only a few minutes or casual discussions that may engage others who happen to be visiting the table at the same time. 
  • Send an Email
    Send your thoughts and ideas to
  • Join the Discussion and Comment on CoUrbanize 
    Discuss your ideas with others at the Cambridge Conversations site hosted by CoUrbanize:
  • Complete the Survey (coming soon)
    Look for updates on the CDD website.

If you cannot attend a meeting this month or cannot comment on line, there will be many more opportunities to participate over the next two years. Watch this space for updates.

Community Meetings

  • June 10 6:30 P. M. - 8:30 P. M. Tobin School Gym/Vassal Lane
  • June 11 6:30 P. M. - 8:30 P. M. Kennedy School Cafeteria/158 Spring Street
  • June 14 10:00 A. M. to Noon Cambridge College/1000 Massachusetts Avenue/Room 152

Drop-In Sessions

  • May 31 11:00 A. M. - 3:00 P. M. Fresh Pond Day
  • June 3 5:30 P. M. - 7:30 P. M. Kendall Marriott (ECKOS Meeting)
  • June 9 11:00 A. M. - 1:00 P. M. Millers River Apartment/15 Lambert Street, East Cambridge
  • June 12 5:30 P. M. - 8:00 P. M. Cambridge Main Library (Bike Planning Meeting)/449 Broadway
  • June 14 8:30 A. M. – 10:00 am GLTB Brunch Event/City Hall, 2nd floor
  • June 14 1:00 P. M. – 3:00 P. M. Hoops and Health Event at Hoyt Field/Gilmore Street (POSTPONED to June 21)
  • June 16 11:00 A. M. - 1:00 P. M. Windsor Street Health Lobby/119 Windsor Street
  • June 17 6:00 P. M. - 8:00 P. M. Jefferson Park Community Room/Lobby/1 Jackson Pl.
  • June 18 11:00 A. M. - 1:00 P. M. Kendall Square Farmers Market/Main St @ Kendall MBTA Station
  • June 18 5:00 - 7:00 PM  Lesley/Porter Exchange/1815 Massachusetts Avenue
  • June 19 6:00 - 8:00 PM Tobin School Lobby/197 Vassal Lane
  • June 21 1:00 P. M. – 3:00 P. M. Hoops and Health Event at Hoyt Field/Gilmore Street
  • June 23 6:00 - 8:00 PM CHA (Old Police Station)/ 5 Western Avenue
  • June 25 6:00 - 8:00 PM Pisani Center/Washington Elms/ 131 Washington Street
  • June 26 4:00 - 7:00 PM Senior Center/806 Massachusetts Avenue
  • June 30 6:00 - 8:00 PM LBJ Apartments/150 Erie Street  

Community meetings, June 2014


Questions/Comments/Suggestions?  Get in touch:

  • By Phone:  617/349-4648 (Elaine Thorne)
  • By Social Media: @CDDat344 #Cambconvo
  • By US Mail:  Cambridge Conversations, 344 Broadway, 3rd Floor , Cambridge MA 02139