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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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Legislative findings
Multiple Dwelling (MDW) CHAPTER 61-A, ARTICLE 7-B
§ 275. Legislative findings. It is hereby declared and found that in
cities with a population in excess of one million, large numbers of
loft, manufacturing, commercial, institutional, public and community
facility buildings have lost, and continue to lose, their tenants to
more modern premises; and that the untenanted portions of such buildings
constitute a potential housing stock within such cities which is
capable, when appropriately altered, of accommodating general
residential use, thereby contributing to an alleviation of the housing
shortage most severely affecting moderate and middle income families,
and of accommodating joint living-work quarters for artists by making
readily available space which is physically and economically suitable
for use by persons regularly engaged in the arts.

There is a public purpose to be served by making accommodations
readily available for joint living-work quarters for artists for the
following reasons: persons regularly engaged in the arts require larger
amounts of space for the pursuit of their artistic endeavors and for the
storage of the materials therefor and of the products thereof than are
regularly to be found in dwellings subject to this article; that the
financial remunerations to be obtained from pursuit of a career in the
arts are generally small; that as a result of such limited financial
remuneration persons regularly engaged in the arts generally find it
financially impossible to maintain quarters for the pursuit of their
artistic endeavors separate and apart from their places of residence;
that the cultural life of cities of more than one million persons within
this state and of the state as a whole is enhanced by the residence in
such cities of large numbers of persons regularly engaged in the arts;
that the high cost of land within such cities makes it particularly
difficult for persons regularly engaged in the arts to obtain the use of
the amounts of space required for their work as aforesaid; and that the
residential use of the space is secondary or accessory to the primary
use as a place of work.

It is further declared that the legislation governing the alteration
of such buildings to accommodate general residential use must of
necessity be more restrictive than statutes heretofore in effect, which
affected only joint living-work quarters for artists.

It is the intention of this legislation to promulgate statewide
minimum standards for all alterations of non-residential buildings to
residential use, but the legislature is cognizant that the use of such
buildings for residential purposes must be consistent with local zoning
ordinances. The legislature further recognizes that it is the role of
localities to adopt regulations which will define in further detail the
manner in which alterations should be carried out where building types
and conditions are peculiar to their local environment.