Friday, June 17, 2011

A City

Many thanks for the warm thoughts that were given by everyone this past Wednesday. I am truly blessed to have such good friends in the cyber world

Having spent the better part of the past 15 years working in the capitol of our lovely state and having to deal with all the bullshit and the dreaded disease of Action Speaks Louder Than Words has for the most part blinded me to the fact that not all cities, both big and medium sized, in this lovely state are mismanaged like our fair capitol.

This particular fact was driven home this past week as the personal family issue that I've had to deal with has caused me to make numerous trips to New Britain, CT. Making these trips during all hours of the day has allowed me to take a good look at what New Britain is doing and accomplishing with not only their downtown area but on the outskirts as well.

For instance, New Britain is performing a minor rebuild of the downtown area, which when completed, should make it more pliable for businesses and schools be located in the center of the city. They've managed to rehab a notorious street that empties into the downtown so as to make it viable for people to live there as well.

And unlike the garbage dump that surrounds the Hartford Hospital complex, the area that surrounds The Hospital of Central CT (aka New Britain General) is decidedly middle class suburbia at its finest. In addition to the well preserved neighborhoods and lively local businesses, it also boasts of a large park area that Hartford always aspires to but never really has. Large enough to have both baseball/softball games and road races (running that is), it's small enough to have a large outdoor band shell for musical concerts.

Additionally, the free parking area that is located directly across from the hospital, contains a very small park as well which is peppered with all kinds of flowers (mostly roses) and of which the city garden club holds walking tours of during the summer.

One more thing that I would like to mention. Unlike Hartford, which holds absolutely no memories for me whatsoever, New Britain holds a lot of memories for me. For the longest time, New Britain was like my second home, in that I spent quite a bit of time traveling through various parts of the city, due to either visiting family friends, medical appointments, going to church or visiting the campus of CCSU (father taught there, so I basically grew up on the campus, so to speak). So spending time this week in New Britain was like tripping down memory lane, in that I remembered all of the old while admiring the new (example: the church that I got married in, closed due to declining membership and after they gave their outstanding property to a Congregational church across the street, sold the building to the city, which turned it into a thriving theater and cultural arts center) and appreciating the fact that even though New Britain has more than their fair share of monetary woes, they've managed to do something right with what little they got to work with.


  1. I always like going back to my home town (it's always for family business these days, too. No family there anymore.) Sounds like a nice drive.

  2. Good to hear there are some places that do it right. None of them around here unfortunately.

  3. Lynn: It's a pretty quick drive, about fifteen to twenty minutes to the downtown area. Not really my hometown, but it comes in as a close second as I've spent almost as much time there as I do here. I like it and its always been a blast to visit.

    Charles: There are quite few towns and cities here in Connecticut that do do it right. Mine does it right about 65% of the time. I just wish that Hartford would do it right. Sad to say that I have not spent any extra time in Hartford since 2004, and from the look of things, the streak won't be ending anytime soon.

  4. You'd think other cities would look at this and think, voila! But no one wants to admit that their little fiefdom isn't perfect, do they?

  5. R: No they don't.

    New Britain has managed to keep separate the budgetary woes that threaten to bring down the current administration and what they do to show that people and businesses should come to the city to live, work and play.

    I wish my town was as well rounded as New Britain is.

  6. Having pleasant living space is key, I'd imagine!
    Lately here they're knocking down alot of woods just to create land tax revenue- Getting me POd- would rather have the trees, endangered plants, box turtles, owls, n frogs!!

  7. Snaggle: They're battling like that in Newington. Major developer is looking to develop a part of Cedar Mountain for business/residential use and people are up in arms about it.


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