February 2024
Issue 117
In This Issue:
  • Beyond the Blueprint: A Career in Public Works
  • Innovation Station: 2024 CT Creative Solutions Award Program — Share Your Creativity and Inspire Your Colleagues!
  • Town Crier: The Town of Stafford Awarded $25,000 From Domino's Pizza
  • Safety Matters: New Nighttime Visibility and Illumination Road Safety Brief
  • TLP Cohort #10 - Now Accepting Applications
  • Free Online Work Zone Safety Training
  • Save the Date: NEAPWA Spring Conference
  • Connecticut Public Works: Promotions & Announcements
Beyond the Blueprint: A Career in Public Works by William Stango, EIT
My first introduction to Public Works goes back to my college days when I took Thomas Roy’s Hydrology class at Central Connecticut State University. At the time I wasn’t really certain what a career in Public Works entailed but from how Professor Roy described it every day was different and the job required you to wear many different hats. Some days you need to be the Engineer who works on designing a new storm sewer system. Some days you need to be the educated client who interviews consultants for major infrastructure projects. Other days you need to be the Contractor who helps schedule work for crews, orders materials, and brainstorms problems that come up during construction. After coming from the private industry, what I have found I enjoy most about Public Works is how I feel more connected to the projects I work on because I get to see them truly from concept all the way through to completion. Even once a project is completed, I get to see how it benefits the community and it gives me a sense of pride that I was able to make a real impact.

William (Billy) Stango is a Civil Engineer with the City of Bristol.
2024 CT Creative Solutions Award Program — Share Your Creativity and Inspire Your Colleagues!
Has one of your employees recently built an innovative gadget or modified something that makes the job safer and easier? Has there been a change in a process that has greatly improved the safety of your staff or streamlined the job to the point where you can’t believe you used to do it a different way? If so, now is the time to show it off and share it with others by entering the 2024 CT Creative Solutions Award Competition. You can view and download the submission form here.
We are looking for examples of gadgets, tools, processes, and programs that public agency employees or road crews designed and built to improve safety, create efficiencies, and make the job easier. It can be anything from the development of tools and equipment modifications to processes that increase safety, reduce costs, or improve efficiency or the quality of transportation. If you have a project that you think is worthy of recognition, fill out this year’s entry form and submit your entry by April 30, 2024.

Looking for inspiration? Take a peek at the past winners in our updated CT Creative Solutions Award Guide! Scroll through the guide or use the index to look for something specific. There are so many great ideas included! You can access the Guide and get more information on the program by visiting the CT Creative Solutions Award Program Webpage on the T2 website.
Aren’t sure if your gadget is what we are looking for? Email Mary McCarthy to share your idea and see if it is a fit.
The Town of Stafford Awarded $25,000 From Domino's Pizza
The Department of Public Works has exciting news for the residents of the Town of Stafford! Thanks to Domino's and their Plowing for Pizza campaign, Stafford has been chosen to receive a $25,000 snow plowing grant. This grant is part of Domino's initiative to ensure that even in snowy, cold weather, pizza lovers in Stafford can still enjoy hot, delicious pizza. This nationwide campaign will award half a million dollars across 20 cities to support snow plowing efforts.
Stafford was selected to receive this grant through an open call for nominations by the public via Plowingforpizza.com. Users submitted nominations with zip codes and email addresses, and the grants were awarded based on a cluster of nominated zip codes surrounding a municipality where snowfall tends to be heavy. The presence of a Domino's store in the area was also a factor in the selection process. As a chosen municipality, Stafford will be featured on the Plowing for Pizza website, along with images and footage from other plowing locations across the country
“At Domino's we've made delivery cars with warming ovens built in, paved roads to get your pizza home smoothly in perfect, hot condition, and offered pizza insurance for when that goes awry,” said Joe Jordan, Domino’s president of U.S. and global services. "To us, nothing should stand in the way of getting a delicious pizza, including snowy, cold weather. So yes—you heard it right: a pizza company is actually helping to plow roads.”
New Nighttime Visibility and Illumination Road Safety Brief
The FHWA CT Division Office and the T2 Center partnered on a new Road Safety Brief which discusses the importance of nighttime visibility and illumination, and includes several valuable resources on this hot topic. The nation's fatal crash rate is three times higher at night than during the day, and almost a quarter of Connecticut's pedestrian fatalities have occurred in dark conditions. Please take a moment to read this important safety brief and share it with anyone else who would benefit from this information. Working together, we can make a difference and achieve CT's Vision Zero!
For more information on the Safety Circuit Rider Program, our equipment loan program, or assistance with local road safety, contact Melissa Evans or Jason Hughes.
TLP Cohort #10 - Now Accepting Applications
Do you know anyone who would be a good candidate for the Transportation Leadership Program? Applications are being accepted for Cohort #10 until May 31, 2024.

For the program application and overview, click here.

Don't hesitate to contact Donna Shea if you have any questions or would like to discuss potential candidates.

"I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers."
- Ralph Nader
Free Online Work Zone Safety Training
The National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse has several free training programs available for your use. These brief classes can be a great way to refresh skills and knowledge prior to the construction season. They are set up as topic-based modules and would work perfectly for a tailgate talk session or to support new staff. Some topics include working on low volume roads, night work, designing access points, and keeping safe within the work zone. 

Click here to access the list and sign up for a class.
Save the Date: NEAPWA Spring Conference
Join us on April 8th for the NEAPWA Spring Conference, a day filled with insights, networking, and discussions at the New England Air Museum. Get ready for a day of innovation and collaboration in the picturesque setting of Windsor Locks, CT.

Explore the skies at the New England Air Museum! Take advantage of free time to tour their collection of aircraft and delve into aviation history. Don't forget to try their flight simulators for an exciting, hands-on experience.

Click here for updates from NEAPWA.
The T2 Center has launched this new section to our monthly e-newsletter, Connecticut Public Works: Promotions & Announcements. Have you promoted a crew member on your team? Has your department received an accolade? Let us celebrate these successes with our CT Public Works community. Please email Regina Hackett your agency's great news and we will publish it in an upcoming newsletter.
Follow Us!
Along with our Facebook page, the T2 Center now has an Instagram page! Click on the icons below to like the T2 Center on Facebook and follow the T2 Center on Instagram!
Visit T2Center.uconn.edu for more information and resources.
If you have any ideas or suggestions for future Connecticut Crossroads topics, please feel free to email the designer Regina Hackett at [email protected]