SCUA

Planning Services Group (Cambridge, Mass.)

Planning Services Group Records, 1956-1986.

10 boxes (4.5 linear feet).
Call no.: MS 335

An urban planning firm based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, that assisted New England cities and towns with initiating and managing urban development projects. The firm had two main types of contracts, urban renewal and comprehensive community planning, and many of their projects were supported with funds designated by the Federal Housing Act of 1949.

Includes organizational histories, memoranda, correspondence, proposal guidelines, materials for citizen participation, job inventories and reports, brochures that document urban growth management and the problems of suburbanization in New England, background studies, planning reports, growth management policies, zoning bylaws and amendments, and the files of Katharine Kumala.

Historical Note

The Planning Services Group (TPSG), an urban planning firm based in Cambridge, Massachusetts from 1955 to 1975, assisted New England cities and towns with initiating and managing urban development projects. Morton Braun, who was educated in city planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and had worked at the Boston division of Slum Clearance and Urban Redevelopment in the Federal Housing and Home Finance Agency from 1951 to 1954, founded the Planning and Renewal Association in 1955 with two partners, Robert Rowland and Donald Graham. The Planning and Renewal Association was renamed The Planning Services Group in 1961, and changed from a partnership to a corporation. The firm was most active in the 1960s, employing over fifty-nine staff-members. Braun was a lecturer in the Department of Landscape Architecture and the Regional Planning program at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst from 1968 to 1976. In 1975, Braun sold the firm to Katherine Kulmala, who operated a reduced consulting service out of her home in Carlisle, Massachusetts until 1982 when she closed the firm.

TPSG had two main types of contracts–urban renewal and comprehensive community planning. Projects in the 1950s and 1960s were initiated and supported primarily with federal funds designated by the Federal Housing Act of 1949, which sought to institute a national housing policy of “a decent home and a suitable living environment for every American family.”

TPSG held planning contracts at the local and state level in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Maine and New York, and established long-term relationships with Durham, NH (1969-1980), Portsmouth, NH (1963-1973), Lancaster, MA (1966-1977), and Sanford, ME (1959-1973). Projects carried out at the town level included the production of: self-help planning manuals for citizens; comprehensive town plans; open space, recreation and zoning studies and revisions; plans for central business districts; plans to recycle historic buildings; and environmental and community impact studies. At the regional level, projects included planning and design criteria for new housing developments and the production of technical manuals for other planning agencies.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

Organizational histories, memoranda, correspondence, proposal guidelines, materials for citizen participation, job inventories and reports, and brochures that document urban growth management and the problems of suburbanization in New England, primarily in communities in eastern Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Connecticut, and New York (Long Island) from the mid-1950s through the mid-1980s. Reports, which comprise the bulk of the collection, include: background studies; planning reports (some in draft or with notations); comprehensive plans (for population, economic base, land use, circulation, private development, and community facilities); growth management policies; zoning bylaws and amendments; capital improvement programs; concept plans for tracts of land; revitalization plans for small town central business districts; open space and recreation plans; environmental impact statements; community impact studies; self-help planning guides; and technical guides. The collection also contains the files of Katherine Kulmala documenting work done independent of The Planning Services Group, including 1953 zoning policies for Boston; open space and recreation studies for Carlisle, Massachusetts, undertaken when Kulmala was a member of the Carlisle Planning Board; articles on lakeside development and recycling of buildings; and a manuscript (typescript) comparing contemporary urban development in the United States to 16th century development of new towns in Mexico (then New Spain).

 

Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The collection is open for research.

 

Preferred Citation

Cite as: Planning Services Group Records (MS 335). Special Collections and University Archives, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, University of Massachusetts Amherst.

 

History of the Collection

Acquired from Katharine A. Kulmala via Stanley Moss, 1990.

 

Processing Information

Processed by Linda Seidman, 1990.

 

 

 

Additional Information

 

Sponsor
Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

 

 

Language
English.


Contents List
Series 1. Administration
1956-1982
History of TPSG
Box 1:1
Correspondence
1956-1982
Box 1:2
Brochures
Box 1:3
Revised brochure
1981
Box 1:4
Planning Board Clerk’s kit advertisement
1980-1981
Box 1:5

Series 2. TPSG Reports and Publications
1957-1985
Lists of reports
Box 1:6
Guide for Evaluating Development Proposals
1975
Box 1:7
Protection of Wetlands and Floodplains
1977
Box 1:8
Wetlands/Floodplains/Zoning manual materials
1976-1977
Box 1:9
Cluster Zoning in Massachusetts
1970
Box 2:10-16
Massachusetts Cities and Towns
Amesbury zoning bylaw
Box 3:17
Amesbury Roy Farm, Land Vest
Box 3:18
Andover general plan
1957
Box 3:19
Andover zoning bylaw
Box 3:20
Arlington comprehensive plan
1962
Box 3:21
Arlington center commercial development plan
1964
Box 3:22
Arlington capital improvement program
1963
Box 3:23
Auburn plan for development
1960
Box 3:24
Auburn zoning
1960
Box 3:25
Bedford general plan
1959
Box 3:26
Boston Pier 2 proposal for residential development
1966
Box 3:27
Cambridge rezoning C-1 to C-3
1966
Box 3:28
Carlisle target plan
1979
Box 3:29
Carlisle zoning, etc.
1984-1985
Box 3:30
Chelsea comprehensive plan fiscal analysis
1970
Box 3:31
Danvers industrial park proposal Dartmouth master plan,
1957, 1977-1978
Box 3:32-32A
Hopkinton zoning bylaw changes
1977-1978
Box 4:33
Interstate 495 Area wide Approach to Growth
1978
Box 4:34
Lancaster zoning regulations
1977-1980
Box 4:35
various reports
1966-1967
Box 4:36
background studies
1967
Box 4:37
protection of N. Lancaster pond area
1973
Box 4:38
Lexington memos, proposals, etc.
1975
Box 4:39
Marlborough downtown development plan and program review and update
1981
Box 5:40
Marlborough downtown development plan and program review and update
1981
Box 5:41
Marshfield memo
1970
Box 5:42
Melrose summary report
1962
Box 5:43
Methuen various reports
1971
Box 5:44
Millbury re: restoring vitality to small town central business districts
1975
Box 5:45
Millbury re: restoring vitality to small town central business districts
Box 5:46
North Reading general plan
Box 5:47
Peabody’s Essex Village community impact
1974
Box 5:48
Pepperell interview and meeting notes
1980
Box 5:49
SOS
Box 5:49AA
growth management, zoning bylaws
1973-1982
Box 5:49A
comprehensive plan
1971
Box 5:49B
Seekonk
Box 6:50
Sharon correspondence
1971-1976
Box 6:51
Sharon Center
1967
Box 6:52
Stoughton environmental impact statement, Copperwood town homes
1973
Box 6:53
Stow memos, reports
1974-1976
Box 6:54
Weymouth open space and recreation
1974
Box 6:55
Wilmington general plan
1957
Box 6:56
New Hampshire Cities and Towns
Derry comprehensive plan
1965
Box 6:57
Durham: The Center
1968
Box 7:58
Durham comprehensive plan
1968
Box 7:59
Durham comprehensive plan
1969
Box 7:60
growth and its impact
1968
Box 7:61
open space
1967
Box 7:62
physical determinants of planning policy
1967
Box 7:63
proposed zoning ordinance
1968
Box 7:64
comprehensive plan
1978
Box 7:65
coastal resources
1979
Box 7:66
neighborhood advisory group
1979
Box 7:67
drafts of reports
Box 7:68
planning notebook
1979-1981
Box 8:69
planning notebook
Box 8:70
trail guide
1976
Box 8:71
subdivision regulations
Box 8:72
Growth Management Options drafts
Box 8:73
Growth Management Options drafts
Box 8:74
memos
1979
Box 8:75
zoning ordinance
Box 8:76
summary update of comprehensive plan
1980
Box 8:77
administrative records
1979
Box 8:78
Hanover various reports and correspondence
1974-1975
Box 8:79
administrative records
1974
Box 8:80
Laconia criteria for exterior treatment of Busiel Belknap mills
Box 8:81
New Hampshire
1975
Box 8:82
North Country Council
1976
Box 8:83
Portsmouth Farragut School
1971
Box 8:84
Portsmouth Seacrest Village
1971
Box 8:85
Other Cities and Towns
Bristol , Connecticut comprehensive plan
1964
Box 8:86
Sanford, Maine correspondence
1971-1974
Box 8:87
Sanford, Maine comprehensive plans
1957, 1973
Box 8:88-89
Long Island, New York community impact study of bridges
1971
Box 8:89A

Series 3. Katherine Kulmala Files
1953-1986
Proposals, applications, resumes
Box 10:90
Boston Herald American column
1977
Box 10:91
Tutolo Siete: New Town in New Spain, sources and criticisms
Box 10:92
Tutolo Siete: New Town in New Spain, typescript
1972
Box 10:93
Boston, Mass. zoning policies
1953
Box 10:94
Carlisle, Mass. open space and recreation report
1986
Box 10:95

Subjects

  • Urban planning--Massachusetts

Contributors

  • Planning Services Group (Cambridge, Mass.)
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