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Everything posted by JayCT

  1. My wife said there were picketers out there today on Columbus Boulevard. Anyone know why? Jay
  2. If anyone cares to remember, it was the city that held back critical funding that delayed the project. That delay hurt the project significantly because the economic climate changed. In all, there is plenty of blame to go around here. JMHO, Jay
  3. The Federal money that they are going after for the improvements to the Springfield Line requires trains to be capable of operating at high rates of speed and to connect major urban areas. Right now the corridor can not accomodate commuter rail service or high-speed rail because it only has one track. If the corridor gets Federal money for high-speed rail improvements, a second track will be added to the corridor and then commuter trains can be added as well as high speed. In a way, the high-speed designation is being used to impliment commuter service as well.
  4. When they say they will build a new patient tower in downtown Hartford, are they talking about an addition to Hartford Hospital or a completely new building elsewhere? I do not consider Hartford Hospital to be located downtown. Jay
  5. We will see if the grocery store develops or not. Like Hartford 21, no commitment has been made. I will say this project benefits from being so close to the train station but we will see how well received it is when completed. $1,500 to $6,000 per month for an apartment is high for New Haven. I hope it works out well though. Jay
  6. I agree that a one story center here would be completely out of scale with the rest of the city. I also agree that Nyberg has got a pretty sweet deal going with this and should be held to a higher standard than a strip mall. That said there is not much financing available for offices and residental projects these days. The economy just will not support it. While the state has been poor in handling this, I believe the city is the one that really messed it up. Perez delayed it by refusing to live up to the city's end of the bargain with developers. Interestingly, this past weekend was the ASSHTO conference which is a national meeting of State Highway Officals from all over the country. The event brought over 600 people to Hartford and was a wonderful success. There were a number of parties and receptions around town as well as exhibitions, seminars and meetings in the Convention Center. I met a number of people from out of state that attended this convention and the RAVED about Hartford. They loved it and said it was by far the best place the conference had been held. They thought they city was very walkable and had a lot of great restaurants not too far from the convention center. They loved visiting Mystic, the Basketball Hall of Fame and the casinos. I was surprised to hear this since we here in CT think these things are too far away to be thought of as part of the Hartford region. Seems like we northeasterners just think that things here are too far away. Jay
  7. Sorry I missed this old post but I could not let it go by. ConnDOT's headquarters building looks expensive but was built at a very reasonable cost for a building of its size and it has served the department well by bringing staff under one roof into a spacious modern facility rather the dumpy mulitple over-priced leased spaces they use to be in. The HOV lanes were required by the Federal Highway Administration as a way to encourage car pooling. This concept works in other parts of the country and was in vogue back in the 80's as a solution to congestion. Even though they look empty, they do carry a large number of people in fewer vehicles. That is what they were suppose to do. As for the 12 "embarassing" lanes in East Hartford, they are there because that section of I-84 is between two major interchanges and are needed to accomodate weaving traffic between them. As for being anti-mass transit, ConnDOT spends million support mass-transit including the New Haven line, Shoreline East, Connecticut Transit and a number of other transit agenices throughout the state. Not many other American cities the size of Hartford were building light rail. Jay
  8. Found this on the Global St.com web site. took them long enough to start looking for tenants. With this economy though it will be a tough sell. JMHO Jay GlobeSt.com Commercial Real Estate News and Property ResourceLast updated: September 19, 2008 04:04pmGVA to Rep Front Street DistrictBy Ryan Clark.HARTFORD-The Stamford, CT-based GVA Williams of Connecticut is being selected as the exclusive leasing agent for the Front Street District development. The project boasts 150,000 sf of which roughly 60,000 sf is designated for retail, with the rest being residential. Greenwich, CT-based HB Nitkin Group--the developer--is in the first phase of building, which is planned to finish in the fall of 2009. The first phase will complete the 60,000 sf of retail space, which can be opened before the second phase--a reported 115-unit residential portion--is complete, according to GVA. There are no tenants yet, but according to GVA the facility can "accommodate someone as large as a 15,000-sf to 20,000-sf anchor." The downtown Hartford area has had a dearth of retail space comparable to this project, so despite a rough economy, this property should attract more interest than a property developed in a more common retail corridor, GVA explains. "This is an exciting project for Hartford that further emphasizes development in the downtown area," says Cory Gubner, president and CEO of GVA Williams, in a statement. The project was put together as a complement to the Adriaen
  9. I saw this letter too. I believe they looked at the front Street site for the new Civic Center but it was deemed to small. Jay
  10. Yes I did check the study, but it does not seem to take into account the overall impact closing Church Street would have on traffic. Even making other streets two way would not help since they are congested now and making them two way would reduce traffic capacity. It seems that the study is more concerned about getting pedestrians around than traffic. They need to look at it in a balanced way and pick a site that best works for everything. Jay
  11. The plan would close Church Street which is one of the few east-west streets left in the core of downtown. This would really mess up vehicular circulation in the downtown more than it is already. The I-84 frontage roads are already over burdened with traffic and this would just make it that much worse. Plus the city would have to close down the XL Center, demolish it and then build a new arena. This means the city will be without a major arena for several years and I do not think that is very smart. The city would be better served by looking at alternative sites so that construction could be done while the exisitng arena is in use. JMHO
  12. Then what is it? Is it the lack of staff at ConnDOT since Rowland hacked the agency to save money? Is it the fact that the Governor and AG's offices now micro-manages everything which bogs the system down? Or is it that same tired old excuse everyone mistakenly believes that ConnDOT is anti-mass-transit? The project is going through its environmental review process like every other major project. The EPA is saying it may require a more detailed review than is currently underway. This is not known until the Feds review the project closely. Believe me if the polititains could get this moving faster they would and WILL. Jay
  13. The truck ramp was designed and planned for years ago, but there was local resistance to construction until the big accident. The barriers in east Lyme are just repcements for the existing highway median so there is not environmental impacts. Jay
  14. There is nothing to disagree on. All projects must go through an environmental review process on the State and Federal level. Project with minimal impacts do not have to go through as vigorious reveiw process as those that do. The EPA's ruling that an EIS is required means that the project does impact the environment. I do not agree with that and I am sure our leaders will fight it. I agree this project does not need anymore delays. Jay
  15. This is not true. Road projects are subject to the same regulations as transit. Look at projects that have been around for years like Route 6, Route 11 and the Q Bridge. It has taken those projects over 20 years to get going. As for the Springfield line, believe it or not there is a significant constuction element to the project that could impact sensitive areas. I am not saying it is right but it is the law. Jay
  16. Actually Stamford is not that much newer than other cities in the state, it is just that its 1960's era urban renewal program actually worked and was able to capture a lot of major corporations and offices buildings that other cities did not. Historically Stamford was a much smaller city than Hartford, New Haven and Bridgeport and lacked highrises downtown that the other cities had. Jay
  17. It took Blue Back Square longer than 2 years to go through approvals. You must remember though that BB2 was a slam dunk winner. It expanded on the very successful West hartford Center which was a major upscale destination for shopping, eating and entertainment. That got the financing in line quickly so construction could start quickly. Storrs Center may have to prove itself first before tenants and financing is lined up. We will see how good it does. Jay
  18. I for one would be concerned about the scale of the buildings. That site needs buildings that are at least thre stories high. If the first floor is retail then what would the second and third floors be. I doubt there is much market for office space so the banks won't finance that. I really think there is a strong need for one bedroom rentals downtown and this would be a great place for it. Jay
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