The What: This Week in Coastal Connecticut

The What is your look around southwest Connecticut for the week of June 13.

The What: This Week in Coastal Connecticut
Happy summer! Photo by Kelly Prinz. 

June 13

Happy Monday!

Have you ever thought about walking or biking, instead of driving, to get to a restaurant, to see a friend, to run an errand, or to even commute? Local officials and advocates are trying to raise awareness about the biking and walking options currently available in our region as well as calling for more resources to continue to improve these types of transportation options.

A few weeks ago, Congressman Jim Himes (D, District 4), visited Norwalk with state and local officials to highlight the progress being made on the Norwalk River Valley Trail, a planned 30+ mile trail that could extend from Norwalk to Danbury when fully complete.

“The truth is that in our area of Connecticut down here, we don't do nearly as well as we can,” he said. “We’ve got areas that are beautiful to bike, but you ought to be able to start in Greenwich on the New York line and be able to go all the way up to Bridgeport along the coastline on beautiful bike trails, run north and south along the rivers and stuff, and we’re just not there yet.”

Other communities across the region are also investing in improving sidewalks and adding bike lanes, with some like Fairfield utilizing federal American Rescue Plan Act funds and others, like Norwalk, Stamford, and Darien, funding improvements and additions through their capital budgets.

One of the benefits of improving bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure is safety. From Jan. 1, 2022 to May 31, 2022, there have been at least 17 crashes involving bicyclists and 59 involving pedestrians, according to data from the Connecticut Transportation Safety Research Center. A report from The Connecticut Mirror noted that “2022 could become one of the more deadly years for pedestrians in the state, continuing a troubling trend.”

Read more.

Let’s take a look at what else is happening in our region.


The Affordable Housing Trust Board will meet on Tuesday, June 14 at 6:30 p.m. to review an application from the Neighborhood Housing Services of Stamford asking for $400,000 from the fund to use for affordable housing at 17 and 19 Stephen, 48 Orchard, 692 Pacific, and 13 Woodland.

Other meetings this week include


Have you ever driven through the intersection of Wall Street and Belden Avenue and been confused? Have you ever tried walking along it and felt unsure where to cross or to safely get around? City officials are hoping the new Wall Street Corridor Improvements Project will address all of those concerns and more.

On Tuesday, June 14, the city is hosting a Wall Street Corridor Design Kick-off event at the Wall Street Theater, where community residents, stakeholders, and organizations can attend to learn more about the project, ask any questions, and give their opinions about the design of the Wall Street Corridor.

The event will start at 4 p.m. and run until 8 p.m. Mayor Harry Rilling, Senator Bob Duff, and Common Council Members Nicol Ayers and David Heuvelman are set to speak at 5:15 p.m. The event will be open-house style and members of the Transportation, Mobility, and Parking team will be there throughout the evening to gather feedback from residents.

For those who can’t attend the meeting, the city has a website set up for the project that includes more information and ways to send feedback.

Read more.


The Planning and Zoning Commission will meet at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 15 to review and take action on the Wegmans application, which is looking to bring the upscale grocery store to Connecticut Avenue. The commission will also be conducting a preliminary review of the plans for 1 Cemetery Street, which call for a 77-unit mixed use development.

Other meetings this week include


The Board of Selectmen is hosting a special meeting on Monday, June 13 at 4 p.m., where it will review a contract to design, build, supply, and install electric vehicle charging stations at Sullivan Independence Hall.

Also, on Monday, June 13, the Charter Revision Commission will meet at 4:30 p.m. to continue to review the public comments received on the proposed updates to the town’s charter and potentially vote to send the approved changes to the Board of Selectmen.

On Wednesday, June 15, the Water Pollution Control Authority will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. on the sewer rate fees for the 2022-23 fiscal year.

Other meetings this week include


The Representative Town Meeting will meet at 8 p.m on Monday, June 13 and vote to approve the town’s affordable housing plan, as required by state statute. Some of the main goals of the plan are:

  • Explore available financial resources outside of the Town that might be utilized to increase our affordable housing inventory.
  • Identify and publicly discuss ways to make our newly created Housing Trust Fund as effective a tool as possible.
  • Support Greenwich Communities in its ongoing efforts to address the affordable housing needs of our Town.
  • Examine zoning rules for opportunities to encourage affordable housing development that respects rather than ignores the fundamental objectives of those rules.
  • Engage the community in conversation about the possibility of utilizing Town funding, either directly or by means of real estate tax abatements, to both mitigate the impact of the large 8-30g projects the community is facing and to increase the affordable housing stock.

The full affordable housing plan is available on the town’s website.

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On Saturday, June 18, a coalition of local groups is hosting an Electrify Your Life event, which aims to “showcase clean energy vehicles and equipment for Fairfield County residents.” The event, which starts at 11 a.m., will feature electric automobiles available to test drive, and a showcase of emission free alternatives to leaf blowers and mowers, and electric bicycles. There will also be live music, food trucks, ice cream, and kids’ activities, including a robotic mower game and a remote-controlled car obstacle course. The event will take place in the parking lot of the Cos Cob train station from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Other meetings this week include


A coastal educational facility. Access for kayaks and canoes to the Long Island Sound. Trails through wooded forests. Children’s camps and programming. These are just a few of the ways Darien could use Great Island, a 60-acre almost untouched piece of property along the Long Island Sound, that the town is under contract to purchase for more than $100 million.

“So many possibilities in this area,” First Selectwoman Monica McNally said at a public forum about the purchase held on June 9.

A look at the Great Island property from the June 9 Darien public presentation. Courtesy of Darien.

McNally called the purchase of Great Island an “amazing opportunity” for the town. The island currently includes an estate house, equestrian facilities, carriage building, three residential dwellings, a boat house, a dock, a small beach, and 1.5 miles of shoreline.

The town officially entered a preliminary contract to purchase the site on May 23. The final step is for the purchase to be officially approved by the Representative Town Meeting on June 27 and 12 days later a 1% deposit is due.

The Board of Selectmen will be meeting on Monday, June 13 at 7 p.m. to give its official approval of the plan through a resolution which calls for “authorizing the purchase of Great Island” as well as a resolution that details the town’s plans to bond and pay for it.

In addition to the Board of Selectmen addressing the purchase this week, two committees of the Representative Town Meeting will review the plans as it relates to their areas of oversight, with the Public Health & Safety committee reviewing it on Wednesday, June 15 at 7 p.m. and the Parks and Recreation Committee reviewing it on Thursday, June 16 at 7:30 p.m.

Read more.

Other meetings this week include


Town officials announced in late May that its Traffic and Safety meetings have concluded and that “a comprehensive list of the priorities and discussion items, as well as documents and procedures relative to the maintenance and safety of public roadways, will be organized and updated on a dedicated Town website page in the upcoming weeks,” as a result of those meetings. First Selectwoman Jen Tooker had hosted meetings with each district in town where residents could share their concerns related to “traffic, pedestrian and bicycle safety, and the steps Town officials are taking with respect to those issues.”

Other meetings this week include

Please note: All of these agendas and information here are current as of Monday morning. Meeting times and agendas may get adjusted throughout the week.

Thank you for reading!

We’re planning to cover more transportation-related issues this summer, including a piece that dives into pedestrian and bicyclist safety. If you are interested in being a part of our reporting, please reach out at

Have a great week,

Kelly Prinz

Founder, Reporter at Coastal Connecticut Times