Norwalk, Connecticut, receives $6 million for development near local train station: CEG

Norwalk, Conn., received $6 million in state funding to support developments in South Norwalk as part of a governor’s plan to improve community livability.

The city of Norwalk, Conn., has received $6 million in state funding to support developments in South Norwalk, or SoNo as it’s known locally, as part of a plan by the Governor Ned Lamont designed to improve the livability of the community.

The governor announced in a recent statement that the plan is part of a $45 million distribution among 12 municipalities that aims to improve “struggling municipalities” and add to downtown areas.

Norwalk received its funds to upgrade the property next to the SoNo station at 30 Monroe St. and 15-17 Chestnut St., according to the release. Work there will be carried out in collaboration with the city, the Norwalk Redevelopment Agency and Spinnaker Real Estate Partners, according to the Norwalk Hour.

Planned development for the area will include at least 200 mixed-income residential units, 10,000 square feet of commercial space, a public plaza and 60 off-street public parking spaces, the governor’s office noted.

“By investing in infrastructure and the urban landscape, such as improving road safety with new sidewalks, mitigating stormwater runoff to prevent flooding, and planting more trees, this project essential infrastructure will increase livability and add vibrancy to our town,” said Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling. to Norwalk’s information source.

“This initiative also allocates funds to preserve existing affordable housing, supporting our vision to make the city a more accessible and equitable place to work and live.”

With the grant, the city plans to take vacant and underutilized land and turn it into transit-oriented developments to accentuate the SoNo station, the Hour reported, while infrastructure improvements will also the potential development of 500 new residential units in the area. .

Norwalk applied for the grant and chose the area for its proximity to public transit and its development potential, city spokeswoman Michelle Woods Matthews told the Norwalk Hour.

She added, however, that construction on the site is unlikely to begin for another 18 to 24 months.

Another set of grants will be released later in 2022

The $45 million is the first round of funding distributed under Lamont’s Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), according to its press release. The second round should be announced in the fall.

“The grants leverage approximately $74 million in non-state and private dollars and will support projects that improve the quality of life and the vibrancy of communities across the state,” the statement said. “Consistent with program goals, more than 50 percent of the funding will be invested in struggling Connecticut municipalities.”

Norwalk’s $6 million grant is the second largest of 12 given out under the DECD’s Connecticut Community Challenge grant program, after the $6.3 million awarded to Hartford to build a mixed-use development in two phases which will generate some 60 new residences.

Other cities and towns across the state that will receive round one funding from the program include East Hartford, Killingly, Mansfield, Middletown, New Haven, New London, Norwich, Stamford, Winchester and Windsor.

The Norwalk Hour reported that the grant program was created in 2021 with the goal of revitalizing communities and creating around 3,000 new jobs.

Lamont’s office noted that the CECD and the grants program are expected to award $100 million in grants over the next few years.

“The program is an important part of Governor Lamont’s Economic Action Plan – a strategic set of initiatives totaling more than $750 million over five years, matched roughly dollar-for-dollar by private funding and other non-state funds. which will result in an expected 80,000 new jobs,” the statement read.

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James H. Wright