Planning

COVID-19 UPDATE

Planning Board Applications

Until further notice, Planning Board applications should be submitted online, via email attachments or share-file links to the Town Planner (lsmead@town.canton.ma.us). Form fillable PDFs of all applications and forms are below. One paper copy for our records and fee payments must be mailed or dropped off at Town Hall at the drop location outside the doors. A second paper copy may be required for the Town Clerk, if relevant to the application (see checklists below). The Town Planner will acknowledge receipt of the application via email, and we will work off the email date of submission. 

Planning Board Meetings

In accordance with the Governor’s Order Suspending Certain Provisions of the Open Meeting Law, G. L. c. 30A, § 20, relating to the 2020 novel Coronavirus outbreak emergency, all further meetings of the Canton Planning Board will be held entirely virtually to avoid group congregation.

Alternative public access to this meeting shall be provided in the following manner:

1. The meeting recording will be provided to Canton Cable TV to post online, and play on the local cable station.

2. Real-time public comment can be addressed to the Planning Board utilizing the Zoom virtual meeting software for remote access. This application will allow users to view the meeting and send a comment or question to the Chair via the Chat function. Submitted text comments will be read into the record at the appropriate points in the meeting.

Zoom Login instructions:

1. Browse to the following web address: https://zoom.us/ (IT will provide unique link for each meeting, so consult the most recent agenda for the link. It will also be provided on this website.)

2. For mobile devices (tablets and phones), please go to either ‘Google Play’ [Android] or the IoS ‘App Store’ [iPhones and iPads] and download the free program ‘ZOOM’. Then click the ‘join a meeting’ link and type in ‘(IT will provide a unique number for each meeting)’. If you have not registered with Zoom you will be asked for your name and an e-mail address.

3. Applicants, their representatives and individuals required to appear before the Planning Board will appear remotely and are not required to be physically present. Applicants, their representatives and individuals required to appear before the Planning Board may contact the Planning Department to arrange an alternative means of real time participation if unable to use the Zoom virtual meeting software. Documentary exhibits and/or visual presentations should be submitted in advance of the meeting to the Town Planner (Laura Smead, lsmead@town.canton.ma.us) so that they may be displayed for remote public access viewing.

Planning Board Meeting Recordings


Planning Board Meeting Documents

Planning Board

The Planning Board is comprised of five elected, volunteer town residents of varied backgrounds. They are charged with the following responsibilities:

  • Preparation and updating of the Town’s Master Plan
  • Review and approval of the construction of new subdivisions
  • Adoption and Review of Town’s Subdivision Rules and Regulations
  • Presenting new streets to Town Meeting for Acceptance
  • Review and recommendation of site plans for the Zoning Board of Appeals
  • Proposal of amendments to the Zoning By-laws and reporting on amendments filed by others
  • Overseeing the Town’s Scenic Ways
  • Approval of some special permits as permitted under the Zoning By-Laws
  • Appointment of the Canton Center Design Review Board
  • Any other duty as prescribed under the General Laws of the Commonwealth and the By-Laws of the Town of Canton

Town Planner

The Town Planner is responsible for working towards town-wide goals with regard to zoning, land use, housing, economic development, and other areas specified in the Canton Master Plan. The Town Planner also works to help procure grants and accomplish other special projects to reach town goals. The Town Planner works with the Planning Board and provides technical review and assistance for projects reviewed by the Planning Board.

Stay Informed

Sign up for the Planning Department News Flashes, Calendar, or Agenda alerts via the Town’s Notify Me service. You can receive emails about project updates, public event announcements, upcoming Planning Board agendas, and links to topics of interest related Town planning.

Look for event announcements and other updates from the Canton Planning Department Facebook feed and the Town Planner Facebook feed.

View all public documents related to Planning Board meetings here.

Master Plan

The Master Plan is a guide for the town’s future and as the town changes the document should change with it. There is a Master Plan Steering Committee is shepherding the process of updating the Master Plan (Completed Spring 2020).

Visit the 2035 Master Plan update page.

Other Plans and Studies

View a full list of maps, reports, plans and resources here.

Planning Board Resources

Scenic Ways

Any person or organization seeking the consent of the Planning Board under MGL Chapter 40, Section 15c regarding road repair, maintenance, reconstruction, paving work, road or driveway cuts that will involve the cutting or removal of trees, or damage to the tree’s root system, or the tearing down of stone walls, or portions thereof, shall file a request with the Planning Board.

The following is a list of Scenic Ways within the Town of Canton. If you are planning to remove a tree or stone wall and you reside on 1 of these streets, please request a determination from the Planning Board: 

  • Chapman Street
  • Elm Street
  • Farm Street
  • Green Street
  • Green lodge Street
  • Hemenway Drive
  • High Street
  • Indian Lane
  • Pleasant Street
  • Sherman Street (from Washington Street eastward to Pleasant Street)
  • Walpole Street
  • Washington Street
  • York Street

Canton Center Design Review Board

The Canton Center Design Review Board (CCDRB) was established to review projects that are within the Canton Center Economic Opportunity District, located in downtown Canton. The CCDRB reviews projects to ensure that facade alterations to buildings and new signage for businesses helps to create a cohesive and attractive downtown area. The CCDRB meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 7 pm in the Armando Building unless otherwise noted.

Canton Center Design Guidelines

Applications, Meetings, and Fees

Additional Resources