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Norfolk/Wrentham - Local Town Pages

Wrentham 2030 Master Plan: Facing a Time of Change

By Angie Fitton
In November of 2021, town residents received a survey regarding their opinion on the importance of preservation of artifacts, local history and culture, as well as the needs of the town and the services it provides. 
There were nearly 800 responses to the survey, providing feedback that can be used to develop goals and strategies as part of Wrentham’s master plan, being developed with the help of the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC). 
What Wrentham Residents Deemed Important
Residents voted that the town center, including the town common and Sweatt Park, most define the history and culture of Wrentham. Also toward the top of the list were the state forest, Joe’s Rock, and local lakes. When asked about preserving, promoting and interpreting Wrentham’s history and heritage, of most importance were preserving open spaces, protecting the town’s working farms, and preservation of historical and cultural sites such as the Wampum House. 
As a result of the feedback received, the Master Plan will emphasize preserving, adding to, and protecting the historic character and cultural resources of Wrentham. Community events were deemed important, as well as recognizing the importance of stories in Wrentham’s history around underrepresented groups such as people of color, women, lower income families and the LGBTQ+ community. 
Aging infrastructure and the fact that many facilities are in need of modernization were noted in the survey. The town also has a Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) in place. The CIP is reviewed and updated yearly, but it has been discovered that it also needs a platform allowing the public to voice their comments and concerns. 
Survey responses also revealed that residents thought the town should provide better response time to fixing potholes, road maintenance, plowing, and fixing streetlight outages. Being able to go online to pay property or excise taxes, obtain dog licenses, and make appointments with municipal staff were also considered important. In addition, there is a great desire to provide children in grades 7-12 with more subject selections and extracurricular activities. 
Sixty percent of residents who responded to the survey want to improve and protect the town’s water supply. Another goal is to create transfer stations for extra solid waste disposal and recycling. 
Residents also want better communication from within town government to the public, including more transparency of town processes. 
Addressing Climate-Related Issues
Future needs and challenges include cutting energy costs and greenhouse gases while preparing for the effects of climate change. A useful tool citizens can utilize is Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE). The town is eligible for Green Community designation, so new policies for energy efficiency should be addressed.
The toughest climate-related challenge in Wrentham is inland flooding. Other local climate impact concerns are drought and heat waves. The priority here is to increase the energy efficiency and sustainability of town facilities and infrastructures while trying to reduce environmental impacts. 
Wrentham residents can check out the Master Plan process, including links to forums already held, online at (search for Wrentham). Folks should also sign up for occasional email updates about the process on the project website and participate in things such as the recent survey to help with the refinement of goals and development strategies to guide the t