Community Data, Existing Plans, and Maps

Community Data and Existing Plans

Below, find a brief profile on each of the five communities –  Easton, Foxborough, Mansfield, Norton, and Sharon – including local waterways, land uses, population demographics, and Environmental Justice communities.

To date, all five communities have engaged in climate related hazard planning and Foxborough has adopted by-laws to address stormwater. Easton, Norton, and Mansfield have all completed Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Plans and Foxborough and Sharon are in the process of completing theirs. Hazard Mitigation plans are also a consideration. All these existing plans are a resource for identifying regional NBS projects that could be prioritized through this process.

Common issues from these existing plans include:

  • Warmer average Temperatures
  • Longer, hotter summers
  • Greater extreme precipitation events
  • More frequent flooding/drought
  • Groundwater quality/quantity challenges (PFAS)
  • Managing drinking water supply

 

Potential NBS projects pulled from these sources can be put into four broad categories:

  • Water Supply and Drought Resilience
  • Flooding, Stormwater, Dams, and Culverts
  • Forests, Habitats, and Invasive Species
  • Public Health and Emergency Preparedness
Sam Wright Field Culvert

Easton

Easton is a community of about 23,000 residents in 29.5 square miles located in the Greater Brockton area in the headwaters of the Taunton River Watershed. The land use in the town is 61.8% forested and 25.2% urban, with 15% protected. All of the town’s waterways are considered part of the larger Taunton River Watershed area, and Easton pumps its public water from the Canoe River Aquifer (3,660 acres of which is in Easton.) Easton is 93% white with the remainder of the population black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and mixed race. 14% of the population is over the age of 65 and 8% are disabled. Approximately 7% of the population meets Massachusetts environmental justice criteria with a small area in the northeast corner of Easton.

Easton MVP Report

Easton Hazard Mitigation Plan

Easton Open Space & Recreation Plan

Foxborough

Located at the intersection of Interstates 95 and 495 south of Boston, Foxborough is a growing community with a population of about 17,000. Foxborough is approximately 20 square miles, with about one square mile of water (4% of its area). The town is 58% forested and 28% urban. The majority of the town’s waterways are considered part of the Taunton River Watershed, and the remaining part of the Boston Harbor Watershed. The Town is the home of Gillette Stadium, which hosts NFL and Major League Soccer games – during home games, the town’s population increases by up to 500%. Foxborough is 91% white with the remainder of the population black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and mixed race. 16% of the population is over the age of 65 and 14% are disabled. No environmental justice areas have been designated.

Foxborough Hazard Mitigation Plan

Foxborough Open Space & Recreation Plan

Flash floods in Mansfield, July 2021

Mansfield

Mansfield is a town of 20 square miles that is home to over 23,000 residents. This inland community has collaborated with neighboring towns to steward shared natural resources. The town is bisected by the Canoe, Rumford and Wading Rivers, as well as many small brooks which are all part of the Taunton River Watershed. Mansfield has also been subject to intense development pressure and has mixed commercial use including the Mansfield municipal airport, and the Xfinity center. Mansfield is slightly more developed than the surrounding communities, with land use at 61.8% forested and 36.6% urban. Mansfield is 90% white with the remainder of the population black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and mixed race. Approximately 7% of the population meets Massachusetts environmental justice criteria. 9% of the population is over the age of 65 and 7% are disabled.

Mansfield MVP Report

Mansfield Open Space & Recreation Plan

Snake River at Bay Road, Norton

Norton

Norton is a town of about 20,000 with a geographic extent of 29.5 square miles. Five major rivers and a regional aquifer are just a few of the natural resources Norton shares with neighboring towns, and this inland community has collaborated extensively with its neighbors to maintain shared environmental assets. All the town’s waterways are considered part of the Taunton River Watershed area. The land use in the town is 61.8 % forested and 23.3% urban. Much of Norton is low-lying and flood-prone. Norton is 93% white with the remainder of the population black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and mixed race. No environmental justice areas have been designated. 12% of the population is over the age of 65 and 10% are disabled.

Norton MVP Report

Norton Open Space & Recreation Plan

Lake Massapoag, Sharon

Sharon

Sharon is a growing town of almost 18,000 people midway between Boston, MA and Providence, RI. Within its geographic extent of 24 square miles, 3.6% of the land use includes open water, and almost 1/3 of the town is protected open space. Sharon’s land use is 62% forested and 24% urban, and its waterways are part of either the Taunton River or Boston Harbor Watershed areas. Sharon has collaborated extensively with its neighbors to maintain shared environmental assets like the Great Woods, the Hemlock Swamp and Islands, and the Canoe River aquifer. The racial makeup of the town is the most diverse among the 5 communities, with close to 20% non-white residents. A large segment of southeastern Sharon is designated as an environmental justice area. There are many older homes: over 14% of the town’s housing units were built before 1940 and before modern building codes. Almost 4% of households speak only limited English.

Sharon Hazard Mitigation Plan

Sharon Open Space & Recreation Plan

Maps

Maps can help us make sure selected projects are effective for a broad range of people and places.

  • Canoe River Aquifer
  • Canoe River ACEC
  • Taunton Watershed
  • Environmental Justice Maps
  • Canoe River Basin
  • Master Map