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Our mission is to be the catalyst that ignites Connecticut's Main Streets as the cornerstone of thriving communities.
Paying It Forward 
It's that time of year when we pause to count our blessings and think about how we might be able to help others increase theirs. We hope you'll help us celebrate the goodness in our lives and downtowns by paying it forward. Please consider a donation in support of CMSC and other small businesses during this season of giving. Together, we can strengthen communities, build hope and create a legacy of goodwill
CMSC Welcomes Woodbury to Member  Network
We're thrilled to announce
the Town of Woodbury as the newest addition to our member network! Woodbury joins over 80 CMSC communities statewide who are cultivating economically and socially vibrant downtowns and Main Streets.
Woodbury was selected by the American Institute of Architects for a 2014 Sustainable Design Assessment Team (SDAT) study, which focused on enlivening the physical appearance, economic viability, and branding of the historic town center. CMSC looks forward to assisting Woodbury with implementing many of the recommendations in both the SDAT and their newly updated Plan of Conservation & Development (POCD), while engaging the community in decision-making. 
Brookfield Streetscape Completes Phase 2
CMSC Member Community Brookfield recently announced Phase 2 of its Town Center District Streetscape is now complete and open to the public.

Photo Credit: Danbury NewsTimes
The completion marks a major milestone in the development of the Town Center District (TCD). The project connects the Still River Greenway Trail to the Streetscape Phase 1 project completed in 2017. Other features added in Phase 2 include 26 roadside parking spaces, a pedestrian crosswalk, 11 shade trees, 15 sidewalk lights, a bus shelter and 1,300 feet of concrete sidewalk and multi-use trail.
The revitalization of the TCD has been a long-standing goal of the Town and a top priority of their Plan of Conservation and Development (POCD). The completion of Phase 2 marks the half-way point of the 4-Phase Plan. Phases 3 and 4 are in the preliminary design and grant funding stages, respectively, with Phase 3 slated for completion in 2021.
"The completion of this phase has not only connected a sidewalk to a high use greenway but also connected local businesses in the downtown to the eager and active users of the trail," said Dana Ferraro, Economic Development Specialist. "This will bring more foot traffic to the businesses from the Greenway and encourage new visitors to take a walk, run, or bike ride on the 3-mile greenway."
CMSC BRIDGE Event Highlights Benefits of 
Walkable Streets
Walkability isn't just about getting from Point A to Point B. It's an indicator of safety, activity and interest.
That was just one of the many takeaways from our recent BRIDGE Series event, Creating Walkabiltiy. . . the First Steps
, featuring speakers David Sousa and Ryan Bingham. Sponsored by CDM Smith and AARP's Livable Communities initiative, the event highlighted how small, consistent changes can lead to big impacts over time while also signaling to the community that real change is happening.
In addition to practical advice, Dave and Ryan also provided a wealth of interesting information, like that the density and activity of a downtown (think 2-4 story buildings with people walking the sidewalk and cars parked on the street) naturally makes drivers slow down, leading to safer streets.  Check out pictures from our event on Facebook!
Wilimantic Celebrates Safe Return to the Riverfront
CMSC was thrilled to be able to join the Willimantic Whitewater Partnership (WWP) and Laura Pirie of Pirie Associates (and CMSC Board member) to celebrate the installation of a new guardrail which will give the public safe access to the beautiful Willimantic River.
CMSC committed $2,900 (10%) of the sponsorships raised during our 2019 Vibrant Main Streets Awards celebration held in downtown Willimantic to the WWP as a way to leave a lasting legacy in our host city. Eversource Energy also committed $2500 to the initiative, and in addition the Willimantic Brewing Co./Main Street Café donated $500, Papa Gino's donated $50 and many local community members also donated to help seed this important step in the park's redevelopment. 
"This is what I call communion," said Willimantic Whitewater Partnership President Jana Roberson during the dedication ceremony. "And I don't mean the wafer. It's the deeper feeling when members of the community come together and enjoy our environment and improve it."  See the Willimantic Chronicle's article on the celebration.
Re-Mains of the Day
▪ Don't forget to support small businesses on Small Business Saturday! - Small Business Saturday takes place on November 30th this year (the Saturday after Thanksgiving). Don't forget to get out and support local businesses whether by getting a head start on your holiday shopping or joining a friend at a local restaurant. Every bit helps as studies show that money spent downtown, stays downtowns! Not sure where to go? Check out this list of CMSC member communities!

▪ Manchester Exhibit Celebrates Diversity - The Galleries at WORK_SPACE, located within the municipally owned and operated Coworking Space & Conference Center in Downtown Manchester is hosting the first annual Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Art Exhibition and Experience titled: PERSPECTIVES: WE ARE ALL DIFFERENT, WE ARE ALL ONE from November 6 - December 26, 2019. Learn more

▪ Sustainable CT Certifies Communities & Earns Trailblazer Award -  Thirty-two municipalities were recognized as meeting the high standards in a broad range of sustainability accomplishments needed to qualify for Sustainable CT 2019 certification. 

Coventry, Guilford, Mansfield, Middletown, New Haven, Simsbury, South Windsor, Vernon, and Windham achieved Silver Certification while Ashford, Bethany, Bloomfield, Brookfield, Burlington, Cornwall, Darien, East Hartford, East Lyme, Essex, Groton, Manchester, New London, North Stonington, Norwich, Old Saybrook, Portland, Scotland, Waterford, West Haven, Weston, Wilton, and Woodbury achieved Bronze Certification.
Collectively, 47 municipalities have earned certification. Awards will be presented at the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities Annual Convention on December 3rd.
Sustainable CT was also recently selected for the Trailblazer Award from the CT Green Building Council. Over 115 people were on hand to celebrate them during the Green Building Awards in New Haven on October 3rd. See pictures from the event.

▪  Main Street America issues RFP for Disaster Preparedness Consultant -   Main Street America (MSA), in partnership with the National Park Service, is seeking a Main Street Community Disaster Preparedness and Resilience Consultant to create a suite of resources that provide immediately useful information for Main Street revitalization organizations to use in preparing for and responding to catastrophic events. The target goal to complete this project is December 31, 2021. Letters of intent are due by December 1, 2019. View the RFP here.
Spotlight on  2019 Award of Excellence Winner. . .
Yale Law School's Ludwig Center for Community & Economic Development and Westville Village Renaissance Alliance 
Westville Village Zone: A University/Main Street Partnership

Ludwig Center law students and the Westville Village Renaissance Alliance listened collaboratively what types of development the Westville community did and did not want to see in their neighborhood. In short, the community preferred greater density with a mix of housing types and commercial spaces that encouraged a more walkable neighborhood and wouldn't obstruct their beloved view of West Rock. 

Ludwig Center law students and WVRA then worked  together with the New Haven City Plan Department to outline a new zoning code for Westville Village that encourages small-scale commercial, residential, or mixed uses that fit with the existing community fabric . As a result of this town/gown collaboration, developers have a clear understanding of what development is desired and acceptable, and community members are able to craft a future and encourage development that fits with their values and neighborhood character.

Connecticut Main Street Center


The Sponsors of our  
Main Street Forums for the 21st Century

And our Partner Organizations:

CT Chapter, American Planning Association
Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County
CT Economic Development  Association
Institute for Sustainable Energy
CT Economic Resource Center
Local Initiatives Support Corporation
CT Housing Finance Authority
Main Street America
CT Preservation Action
Partnership for Strong Communities
CT Urban Legal Initiative
Pro Bono Partnership