The What: This Week in Southwest Connecticut

The What is your look around southwest Connecticut for the week of April 17.

The What: This Week in Southwest Connecticut
It felt like summer for a good part of this past week. Hope you all got to enjoy some sun! (Photo by Kelly Prinz) 

Monday, April 17

Happy Monday!

Since July, there have been more than 1 million rides taken on Norwalk Transit District buses. But the future of who will provide those rides is a little unclear, as there is a proposed bill to dissolve the locally-run Norwalk Transit District.

We examined the proposed legislation and went behind the scenes to give an inside look into how the transit district operates and what some of its future goals are.

Matt Pentz, who was appointed as the CEO of the Norwalk Transit District at the start of the year, said that he didn’t “think it was a good idea.”

“I think local governance is important,” Pentz, who also lives in Norwalk, said. “The city is evolving, and our board lives here. They see what’s going on. I think it’s key to have local input.”

But the bill was proposed by members of the local delegation—State Senator Bob Duff, who represents Norwalk and part of Darien, and Norwalk Representatives Kadeem Roberts, Dominique Johnson, and Lucy Dathan. Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling also submitted public testimony in favor of dissolving the transit district.

“We feel that Norwalk would benefit from eliminating the Norwalk Transit District's bureaucracy and merging the bus routes into CT Transit,” a letter from the Norwalk legislators reads. “The funds saved can instead be used to improve bus service in Norwalk and the surrounding communities.”

But the transit district provides a variety of services—fixed route services in Norwalk (and into Wilton), on-demand microtransit in Norwalk and Westport, commuter shuttles in Greenwich, and paratransit, or door-to-door service, for those who are disabled or elderly in Norwalk, Westport, Wilton, and Stamford. Questions remain about who will provide all of those services if the district is dissolved.

Check out our piece exploring this legislation and its potential impacts and go behind-the-scenes with us to learn more about what the Norwalk Transit currently does and hopes to do. You can also check out our video, exploring the Norwalk Transit District.

Let’s see what else is happening this week.


The Board of Finance will meet on Monday, April 17 at 7 p.m. and is scheduled to take action on the mayor’s proposed operating, capital, and special funds budgets and the Board of Education budget. See what’s in the proposed budget ahead of time

The Fiscal Committee of the Board of Representatives will continue its budget review on Tuesday, April 18 at 6:30 p.m. The committee and then the full Board of Representatives will vote on the budget recommended by the Board of Finance.

Other meetings this week include:


The Ad Hoc Affordable Housing Committee of The Common Council will receive a presentation from city staff on affordable housing at its meeting on Wednesday, April 19 at 6 p.m. Norwalk is the only community in our region that has yet to submit an affordable housing plan to the state. See what other communities are working on.

Affordable housing is also on the agenda for the Ordinance Committee of Common Council at its meeting on Tuesday, April 18 at 7 p.m. where it will discuss a draft affordable housing ordinance.

The Charter Revision Commission will hold a public hearing on its proposals to update the city code on Wednesday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. Members of the public are invited to share their thoughts on new proposals to the city’s charter, including items such as the mayor’s term.

Other meetings this week include:


On Thursday, April 20, starting at 6:30 p.m., residents are invited to a Plan of Conservation and Development Open House. The Plan of Conservation and Development, also known as a POCD, is usually updated every 10 years and serves as the community’s guide to planning for the future. The open house will include a presentation on recommendations and a chance for residents to give their ideas and opinions.

The Board of Selectmen will receive an update on the Penfield Pavilion project at its meeting on Monday, April 17 at 4 p.m. Plans to address the violations and remediate the soil at the property were approved a few weeks ago by the town’s Board of Selectmen, Board of Finance, and Representative Town Meeting.

Other meetings this week include:


The Planning & Zoning Commission will meet on Tuesday, April 18 at 4 p.m. and review plans to mediate/remove impacted fill material beneath the athletic fields at Western Middle School and the plans to construct new synthetic turf fields there.

Other meetings this week include:


The Planning & Zoning Commission will meet on Tuesday, April 18 at 7:30 p.m. and receive an update on the Darien Commons project, which includes 122 apartments and retail space near Noroton Heights train station from Patrick McMahon of Federal Realty.

Other meetings this week include:


Four committees of the Representative Town Meeting will be reviewing sections of the proposed budget this week:

Other meetings 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