Pleasant Street Center Community Forums

Community Forums on April 6, 2022

Reading, MA — Let your voice be heard and be part of Reading’s Vision for the future! Join the conversation at one of the upcoming public forums hosted by the Town of Reading on how the Town should be planning for a potential new Senior/Community Center. 

Two public forums are scheduled on April 6, 2022, (in person and via Zoom).

The existing Senior Center, the Pleasant Street Center (PSC), was part of a 2017 needs assessment conducted by the UMASS Gerontology Institute. The study concluded that the limitations associated with the PSC limited the Town’s ability to meet the needs of Seniors. A key recommendation of the UMASS study was to explore the feasibility of providing more space for the center, especially due to the growing Senior population and the trend for many Seniors who are choosing to age in place. 

There have been subsequent improvements made to the PSC to continue to provide programs and services within the constraints of the existing building. Elder and Human services staff has provided a vital lifeline to Seniors especially over these past 24 months of the global pandemic by providing remote programming, drive-by events, a Chrome Book Loaner program, and most importantly, thousands of phone calls to Seniors when the PSC was shuttered for safety reasons.

Several months ago, Town Meeting funded the cost of a planning study to hire a consultant to help identify the pulse of the community regarding a new center (e.g., Seniors only or Intergenerational). Last Fall the Select Board created and appointed members of Reading’s Center for Active Living Committee (Re-Calc), an ad-hoc committee, that will explore the current and future needs of the community and develop recommendations for how the Town should plan for a new facility. Together with the consultant, a team hired from the UMass Gerontology Institute; a robust community engagement effort has begun.

“ReCalc, Town staff, and our consultant from the UMass Gerontology Institute have hit the ground running,” said Town Manager Fidel Maltez. “We are excited to be starting this planning process and look forward to community input driving that.”

A presentation by ReCalc is planned for the March 22, 2022, Select Board meeting and is scheduled to be heard at 9:30 p.m. that night. There is also additional information on the Town of Reading website.

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