Ramps are the new Swedish leech.
Maybe someone with refined sensibilities can tell the difference between a ramp and any other kind of leek, or an imported “supreme” Swedish leech and the ones found down in the lake, but desirability has consequences beyond thinning one’s wallet. In the 19th century, those exotic Swedish leeches were in such high demand that they faced extinction, Andrea Rapacz, the Head of Interpretative Projects at the Connecticut Historical Society, told me.
Apparently, those hip imported leeches were better quality because they knew when to stop drawing blood from the patient. Continue reading 'Chloroform, Whiskey, and Morphine'»
Hartford is no stranger to actions opposing violence, whether that violence is found in Iraq, a suburban town along the New York border, our streets, or in our homes.
Still, the different causes do not typically spill into one another as seamlessly as they did today, with the March for Change directly preceding One Billion Rising.
The March for Change marked two months since the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
Among those calling for safer gun laws was actor Christine Baranski, who told the 5,500 activists, “even if you have a gun to defend your home or for sport, thanks for supporting commonsense changes.”
Continue reading '“The New, Not-So-Quiet Majority”'»
Frog Hollow residents began shoveling a path the width of a van down the middle of a one-way side street on Sunday morning. What started with a lone shoveler quickly snowballed into a community effort. Continue reading 'When the Plows Don’t Show'»
Starting May 1st, trash and recycling collection days will be shifted for about 20% of Hartford residents. Most impacted will be those in the Blue Hills, Frog Hollow, Upper Albany, West End, and Clay Arsenal neighborhoods, and those within the South Downtown NRZ. Continue reading 'Garbage Day'»
The controversial proposal to create a “fueling station” next to the Stop & Shop in Parkville was referred by City Council to the Planning and Zoning Commission and the Planning and Economic Development Committee.
There will be a hearing at the January 22, 2013 meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission. This meeting will begin at 5pm in the Plaza Level Conference Room at 260 Constitution Plaza.
On tonight’s City Council agenda is an item that should sound familiar. The Stop & Shop on New Park Avenue has tried to install a gas station in the past, only to be met with vocal opposition from Parkville residents. Tonight, the store is trying again. Continue reading 'Fuelish Proposal for Parkville'»
This morning Mayor Segarra gave a dizzying account of changes and projects that are underway, from “nodal development” along Albany Ave to the $500,000 that he said has been secured for environmental remediation of the former Swift Factory. The new public safety complex on High Street, which has its opening ceremony scheduled for Wednesday, was called a “catalyst” for the development of North Downtown. By all accounts, Segarra views Hartford as moving in the right direction. Continue reading 'Optimism Reigns in Update on City'»
After being told that Walmart wanted protestors moved because they were allegedly impeding pedestrian and vehicle traffic, the singing and chanting group moved down to a space on the sidewalk where they were told by the police they needed to remain. Shoppers never lost access to the store, nor did motorists find themselves barricaded in the parking lot where many spaces remained empty.
Despite cooperation, the prisoner transport van appeared and police began to assemble a so-called free speech zone with sawhorses, an effort that seemed confusing and laughable to most, as the activists had long been sticking to walking between two cones placed on the sidewalk for the better part of an hour. Continue reading 'Police Ignore Ordinance as Activists Show Solidarity with Walmart Employees'»
The Department of Transportation claims that the Flower Street closure is a matter of public safety, but residents who live here 24/7 have observed how unsafe this maneuver would turn out to be. Doubtless, Courant (et al) employees would be inconvenienced by having parking lot access disrupted when Flower Street is blocked. There would be added congestion in areas because of this. But ten minutes of added drive time is nothing compared to other headaches likely to emerge of the DOT proceeds as they intend.
Emergency Vehicles to be Blocked
For starters, emergency vehicles would be unable to use Flower Street.The solution seen fit by the engineers? Let ambulances and fire trucks cut through the parking lot at the corner of Capitol Avenue and Broad Street. It’s worth noting that this “adds” an east/west route, not the north/south route that would be lost.
Added Distance for Cyclists
Looking north. Flower Street from Capitol Ave. to Farmington Ave. is a straight trip 3/10 of a mile in length.
Continue reading 'Flower Street Debunking: Setting The Record Safe'»
Dissent from Neighborhood
Not a single Hartford resident or business owner attending Monday’s special meeting of the Frog Hollow NRZ spoke in favor of the closure of Flower Street. Though the Connecticut Department of Transportation is required to hold a public hearing (August 23) regarding this street closure, the DOT spokesmen (the sole female never spoke) made it clear that they were uninterested in engaging the community in discussing the unilateral decision to further cut off Frog Hollow and Asylum Hill from one another. The viaduct began that job; the busway appears to be finishing it.
The meeting began with a presentation on the planned closure of Flower Street, though the DOT actually gave more overview of other parts of the project along with the planned construction on Broad Street, which they said could begin as early as next week. They explained, in detail not afforded to the Flower Street portion of the project, how the Broad-Asylum-Farmington intersection would be reconfigured. This segment showed serious detail to repainting lanes differently, but did not incorporate lessons from past failures with reconfigured turning lanes, as resident Jennifer Cassidy noted. This could be a metaphor for the DOT’s method of planning: be detail-oriented about one aspect while not investigating other angles whatsoever.
In their presentation, the DOT spokesmen (8-10 employees with the Department were present at the meeting, but only three spoke at any length) boasted that the Flower Street closure had been endorsed by the FRA/FTA administrations, though they did not say when this occurred.
They also said that they had traffic concerns regarding this area, yet the most recent traffic study completed for Flower Street was done by CRCOG — in 2006.
Cary Wheaton, the executive director of Billings Forge Community Works, along with David Corrigan, of the Frog Hollow NRZ, demanded a new traffic study be completed as there have been major changes in the neighborhood since 2006. The Firebox, a major draw, opened in 2007. The Kitchen at Billings Forge opened its doors only a few years ago. In that area, there have also been classes and events at the Studio, along with a farmers’ market — none of which were happening at the time of the CRCOG study. The Dunkin Donuts, formerly at the gas station on Broad and Capitol, moved into a space on Lawrence and Capitol. Continue reading 'Deflowering Without Consent'»