The What: This Week in Southwest Connecticut

The What is your look around southwest Connecticut for the week of November 14.

The What: This Week in Southwest Connecticut
This week, we looked at the latest with a community center in South Norwalk and much more. (Photo by Kelly Prinz)

Monday, November 14

What is the future of the South Norwalk Community Center? The building at 98 South Main Street joins the Glenbrook Community Center in Stamford as the latest center with an uncertain future.

Last week, the city’s Board of Estimate and Taxation approved $50,000 to help the city maintain the building through at least July 2023 while it sorts out future plans.

The building was the center of the community for years, but since about 2014 when one of the operators of the building declared bankruptcy, the space has been underutilized. In 2019, however, the city thought that was changing after the YMCA was awarded a contract around the end of 2019 to lease the space and provide resources and programming to the community. The agreement was highly publicized, as a way to bring services and community space back to South Norwalk.

But like many things, the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the YMCA’s plans for the building. The YMCA also said it was too expensive to renovate the space so the city and nonprofit terminated that agreement, leaving the future of the property a bit unclear.

Check out our story to learn more.

We also put together our first explainer video—a new way we’re looking to tell stories—that describes what’s happening at the community center. Take a look.

Check out our video explainer of what's happening at 98 South Main Street.

Members of the community are invited to a holiday extravaganza on Sunday, Nov. 20 at 50 Washington Street in Norwalk. The event, run by the city along with the Parking Authority and LAZ Parking, will feature a tree lighting ceremony, holiday carols, a petting zoo, games, carriage rides, and a special visit from Santa.

Let’s see what else is happening around the region this week.


Mayor Caroline Simmons is hosting a Springdale Community Meeting on Thursday, November 17 at 6 p.m. with Board of Representatives members Bobby Pavia and Mary Fedeli to gather ideas and feedback about what should happen at 0 Haig Avenue, the old Civil Defense building. Residents with thoughts and ideas can also use this online form to submit feedback about what to do with the site.

The Affordable Housing Trust Fund Board will meet on Tuesday, November 15 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss the city’s recently adopted Housing Affordability Plan and what priorities the Affordable Housing Trust Fund would like to see implemented.

Other meetings this week include:


The city’s Transportation, Mobility, and Parking department is hosting the second “design charrette,” or a collaborative meeting, for Wall Street Corridor Improvements on Monday, November 14 starting at 5 p.m. From 5 p.m. to 6 p.m., there will be an overview presentation of the entire design for the area. Starting at 6 p.m., there will be stations set up for residents to come and speak to city officials about specific parts of the plan. All are encouraged to share their input on the future designs for the neighborhood.

On Wednesday, November 16 at 6 p.m., the Planning and Zoning Commission will continue discussing and working on regulations related to retail cannabis establishments in Norwalk. Learn more about the city’s decision to legalize cannabis sales.

Other meetings this week include:

  • Tuesday, November 15: Fire Commission at 3 p.m. | Ordinance Committee of the Common Council at 7 p.m.
  • Wednesday, November 16: Harbor Management Application Review Committee at 6 p.m. | Parking Authority at 6 p.m.| Charter Revision Commission at 6:30 p.m. | Community Services Committee of the Common Council at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, November 17: Early Childhood Council at 10 a.m. | Norwalk Transit District at 1:45 p.m. | Human Relations Commission at 6:30 p.m. | Zoning Board of Appeals at 7:30 p.m.


On Tuesday, November 15, the Town Plan & Zoning Commission will meet at 6:30 p.m. to discuss potentially extending the ban on cannabis in the town. See what other communities have done related to cannabis in our area after the state voted to legalize it.

Other meetings this week include:

  • Monday, November 14: Solid Waste & Recycling Commission at 7 p.m. | Board of Health at 7:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, November 15: Forestry Committee at 9:30 a.m. | Harbor Management Commission at 4:30 p.m. | Flood & Erosion Control Board at 7 p.m. | Board of Education at 7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, November 16: Fairfield Cares Community Coalition at 8:30 a.m. | BOE Facilities Committee at 2:30 p.m. | Capital Plan Working Group at 4 p.m. | Parks & Recreation Commission at 7 p.m. | Conservation Commission at 7 p.m. | Water Pollution Control Authority at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, November 17: Human Services Commission at 4 p.m. | Bicycle & Pedestrian Committee at 6 p.m. | Parking Authority at 7 p.m.


On Wednesday, November 16, UConn is hosting the UConn Climate Forum from UConn at Greenwich High School starting at 7 p.m., which aims to highlight the University’s efforts to address the global climate crisis. The forum will feature President Radenka Maric, who is described as “an internationally recognized expert in climate change, sustainability, and green energy.” It will also feature a panel, hosted by Anne D’Alleva, the interim provost, which will include several UConn faculty experts. This event is free and open to the public.

Other meetings this week include:


The Board of Finance will meet on Tuesday, November 15 at 7:30 p.m. to discuss and potentially take action on two items related to enhancing school security in the district. The first is $296,000 for school security personnel, while the second is a $335,000 appropriation for school security enhancements to the district’s buildings.

School-related items are also on the town’s Planning & Zoning Commission on Tuesday, November 15 at 7:30 p.m. as the commission will be reviewing the renovation plans for Hindley Elementary School and Royle Elementary School.

Other meetings this week include:


Westport is hosting its second public information meeting related to flooding. This event, which will take place on Thursday, November 17 at 7 p.m., will focus on the Silver Brook and Willow Brook area. This is the second in a series of meetings that will discuss stream flooding in town and the work the town is doing to address this issue.

“A priority of this administration is to address flood mitigation and stream management as it relates to the resiliency of our neighborhoods,” First Selectwoman Jen Tooker said in a statement. “Providing an opportunity for residents to learn more about these issues and to share how they are being affected is an important first step in the process of tackling this complex, long-term problem.”

Officials from the public works, planning and zoning, and conservation departments will be on hand. Residents are encouraged to attend to share their stories about how flooding has impacted them and raise specific issues to the town. Westport officials said they plan to collect the information for the Flood and Erosion Control Board to help it determine its flooding priority areas.

Other meeting this week include:

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

Thank you for reading!

If you are interested in being a part of our reporting or just want to share your thoughts, please reach out at

Have a great week,

Kelly Prinz

Founder, Reporter at Coastal Connecticut Times