About Us

We’re not your grandpa’s regional planning agency

MVPC is ahead of the curve:

Sure, we’ve been around since 1959. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t cutting edge. We turn the tide on what most people think they know about planning agencies. For starters, we never forget our roots—we’ve been managing growth and developing today’s communities in the Merrimack Valley, as marked by over 50 years of constant evolution and progression. We play a proactive part in each and every community in our region—where our goal is to consistently plan, develop and promote not only the sustainable development of the Valley through responsible and efficient use of regional resources, but also to rally and unify our communities to perpetuate the region’s vision.

Call us planning pioneers—we’ve paved the way for over 50 years.

Our Mission

Foster a cooperative effort among its communities in resolving common, regional problems, to allow its communities to plan jointly, and to promote with the greatest efficiency and economy the coordinated and orderly development of the region and the general welfare of its residents.


Our Charter—District Establishment & Organization

Our History

The Merrimack Valley Planning Commission began as the Central Merrimack Valley Regional Planning District in 1959, and was established as a corporate public body in accordance with Section 3, Chapter 40B of the Massachusetts General Laws. Progressively over the years, town by town and city by city was added to our charter, until we became the Merrimack Valley Planning Commission (MVPC) in 1971, encompassing 15 constituent communities across the Merrimack region.

Our Members

We are deeply committed to the 15 communities we serve, and offer support, problem solving, trusted resources and assistance so our communities enjoy regional support at their local level:

Our Approach

We’re here to help. As a public, nonprofit organization, we’re committed to assisting the Valley’s communities in the planning areas of transportation, the environment, land use, economic development, and GIS mapping. The purpose for creating our organization over 50 years ago governs our actions today—to help communities plan growth and resources, develop economically and regionally, and promote community collaboration for the overall welfare and prosperity of our Valley’s citizens.

Our Work

Collaboration is the name of our game. We take a very progressive, hands-on approach to our projects, from the beginning funding stages to delivering award-winning final products. We collaborate and continually involve cooperation with local, state and federal government officials, along with private sector businesses and individuals to ensure consensus. Federal and state agencies we work side-by-side with include the Environmental Protection Agency, Economic Development, Federal Transit Authority, and Mass DOT, to name a few.

Project funding comes from a variety of sources for federal, state and local projects and fall within six major categories:

  • Transportation & Transit Planning (46%)
  • Local Assessments & Local Technical Assistance (6%)
  • Economic & Community Development Planning (14%)
  • Comprehensive Planning (15%)
  • Environmental, Land use & Smart Growth Planning (14%)
  • Geographic Information System (GIS) Services (5%)

We also apply for and receive competitively awarded grants, and contract work directly with local communities and municipalities. We also provide local technical assistance to each community as part of annual member dues.

Five of these six service areas accounted for 94% of the agency budget, and were derived from a variety of largely non-local sources, including state and federal grants, as well as contracts with selected non-profit organizations and businesses that support MVPC’s mission.

Only 6% of the budget was derived from local assessments to our member communities. These local funds were used by MVPC as match to leverage the 94% of outside funding brought into the region by the commission staff.



We’ve been around for over 50 years, governed by a simple vision: plan, develop and promote sustainable development of the Merrimack Valley by efficient use of regional resources.

  • Merrimack Valley Planning Commission
    160 Main Street
    Haverhill, MA 01830
    p: 978.374.0519
    f: 978.372.4890
    e: info@mvpc.org

  • Translate This Page:

    Google Translate Disclaimer

    Google Translate Disclaimer

    Translations of pages on the Merrimack Valley Planning Commission (MVPC) website are performed by Google Translate. Google Translate is a free online language translation service which can translate text and web pages into different languages. Note that NOT all text may be translated correctly or be translated at all.

    Please be aware that when a translation is requested, you will be leaving the MVPC website. When a translation is complete, you assume the risk of any inaccuracies, errors, or other problems encountered. MVPC will NOT be held responsible for any issues or damage that may possibly result from using Google Translate.

    If you have any questions about Google Translate, please click the following link: Google Translate FAQs