Category: neighborhoods

The Little Park That Could

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By , October 15, 2014 6:12 pm
In an area of Downtown, beyond the parking garages and towers, is a park that sits atop the I-84 tunnel. Two of its three segments — east of Main Street and west of Trumbull Street — are nothing more than vegetation and rarely used benches. The central piece, known as Heaven, has evolved from hosting underutilized four square and basketball courts, to attracting skateboarders, graffiti artists, and others. It has been featured in skateboarding videos and magazines.

Reader Questions About Downtown North Development

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By , October 13, 2014 5:30 pm

As the controversial Downtown North proposal goes to vote on Tuesday, there are still dozens of questions remaining unanswered, not to mention an outstanding FOIA request placed initially to Thomas Deller and Wayne Benjamin, and now to Maribel La Luz. Two camps seem to have emerged on this issue, and it’s not pro-stadium/anti-stadium. It’s those who find it reasonable to ask questions and expect thorough, detailed answers, and those who find critical thinking cringe-worthy.

We have been compiling reader questions since June. Here is what people still want to know about this project. Some reader questions were edited to add clarity:

  • What details exist on the retail space and potential tenants?
  • The City would be contributing land for the the construction of a brewery. Is it acceptable to use public funds to facilitate the production, distribution, and consumption of alcohol?
  • What would the rent be for the housing? Would this fulfill the demand for the type of housing that exists in Hartford?
  • How exactly would a stadium drive development? Give details. How has this occurred in cities that are comparable to Hartford in terms of population and wealth?
  • Why isn’t there a proposal without a stadium?

Night Fall Entertains Children with Puppets and Dance

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By , October 12, 2014 3:15 pm

Some towns have apple festivals. Continue reading 'Night Fall Entertains Children with Puppets and Dance'»

21st Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon

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By , October 11, 2014 9:07 am

Ready

Continue reading '21st Hartford Marathon and Half Marathon'»

G.E.R.M. in Connecticut Education

By , October 8, 2014 9:44 am

Robert Cotto, Jr.

What does it mean when changes to educational policy that begin in urban districts go on to shape the policy for schools statewide?

That was a question asked by Robert Cotto, Jr. in his talk: “Connecticut Catches a Case of the G.E.R.M.” at Trinity College as part of the Center for Urban and Global Studies’ Global Vantage Point Lecture Series.

The G.E.R.M. referred to is the global education reform movement, which he said “pushes a prescribed curriculum” and includes “test-based accountability and control.”

“We think the suburbs is where where the action” is in terms of changes to education policy, Cotto said, but cities are where the theories get tested.

In 2012, Gov. Malloy declared that it was the “Year of Education Reform” and unveiled six principles. Of those, three were already being practiced in Hartford and New Haven; New Haven was already using test-based teacher evaluations, and both cities had limited expansion of preschool programs and limited use of conditional funding.

The Hartford and New Haven models “appeared” to be successful, but Cotto chalked that up to what he calls “addition through subtraction,” or test scores getting an artificial boost when students with disabilities no longer had to take the same standardized test. Continue reading 'G.E.R.M. in Connecticut Education'»

Destroying Neighborhoods, One Brush Stroke At A Time?

By , October 7, 2014 3:27 pm

These houses on Niles Street were the subject of someone’s complaint on SeeClickFix. The two properties appeared drab in the photos found on the assessor’s list, but have been since accented with attention-grabbing colors.

The complaint goes beyond the vibrant color scheme. Continue reading 'Destroying Neighborhoods, One Brush Stroke At A Time?'»

Author of “Everything is Illuminated” Visits Downtown

By , October 6, 2014 3:49 pm

Author Jonathan Safran Foer spoke about writing and religious identity as process on Sunday evening at the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford‘s Celebrate the New Year Together event at the Marriott. He made it seem effortless to keep the attention of the over 300 people in attendance.

Safran Foer, author of Eating Animals explained that the book began as an exploration of his decision to become (and remain) a vegetarian, more than it was any attempt to convert others’ culinary habits. Likewise, when asked about his Jewish identity, he responded in a way that was self-described as “convoluted,” but touched on the complexity of personal versus community identity. Where at one time more people were vegetarian than would admit to it, now the numbers have grown so much as to suggest that there are those who claim to not eat meat, but who actually do. He wondered if this is the same with Judaism, if some of these identities are more aspirational than actual.

Those in attendance considered to be young (under 45) had the opportunity to participate in a quick meet-and-greet with Safran Foer after the formal program ended, proving that one can write a number of solid books (including co-production of the New American Haggadah) and find the time for a trip to Hartford, and speak with those who might still only be aspirational in any number of their identities.

First Green Lanes Underway for Hartford

By , October 5, 2014 2:24 pm

More than one year ago, Real Hartford reported that there were plans to paint green bike lanes on the section of Broad Street between Capitol Avenue and Farmington Avenue. Temporary striping for lanes and bike boxes occurred last November. Continue reading 'First Green Lanes Underway for Hartford'»

Jesus-as-Beggar Sculpture in Hartford

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A religious-themed sculpture by Timothy Schmalz can be viewed in front of Christ Church Cathedral for the next few weeks before it moves on. Continue reading 'Jesus-as-Beggar Sculpture in Hartford'»

Scenes from the Sidewalk: Street Smarts

By , October 3, 2014 3:52 pm

Photo by Kerri Provost, RealHartford.org / May not be republished without permission

A skate park might not be the first place you would look for commentary on the state of public education. This graffiti popped up on a structure that faces Capital Prep Magnet School and happens to be painted in that school’s colors.

Diane Ravitch, who we are guessing did not write this at a height requiring a ladder to reach, will be giving a lecture about the privatization of public schools. That free, public event will take place on October 8th at Quinnipiac University in Hamden.

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