Planning Board Asks for Help to Update the Master Plan

Vision of how we see the future Andover

By Ken Wells

What is the Master Plan? The Master Plan is a powerful vision statement of how we wish our town to be in the future. It is a manifestation of the people of Andover’s self-determination for the next decade, because it is created through a democratic process that welcomes public involvement. 

Andover citizens’ vision and “legislative intent,” as articulated in Andover’s Master Plan, gives legal standing to the work of the Planning Board as it goes about the practical work of drafting the ordinances that make that vision of “future Andover” concrete. Those ordinances provide the basis that all the other entities of town government rely on.

The previous Master Plan was initiated in 2004 and adopted in 2013; it should be updated every decade. The Planning Board began the updating process at our work session on November 29 of last year. At that meeting, it was agreed that we need not start by throwing out the old Master Plan and reinventing the wheel, but we did identify certain areas needing updates where we should focus particular attention.

A Planning Board subcommittee is forming to explore possibilities and draft preliminary proposals. The committee seeks involvement of citizens like you. We are all stakeholders in this process of clearly articulating the choices we face together, balancing preservation of what has been with the types of changes that Andover will welcome in the future. It is expected that updating the Master Plan will be a months-long process, if we go about it conscientiously. 

The initial Master Plan informational meeting will be held in the Town Office on Saturday, June 10, at 9:00 AM. If you would like to participate in the discussion of Andover’s Master Plan, please contact Ken Wells, Planning Board chair (, or Jacob Gilman, Master Plan Committee chair (