Newtown to receive Preservation of Place grant funds

Connecticut Main Street Center (CMSC), the downtown revitalization and economic development non-profit, announced today that eight organizations and municipalities have been awarded a total of $80,000 in 2015 Preservation of Place grants.  These grants will be used to provide Connecticut communities of Bridgeport, Canton, Hartford, New Milford, Newtown, Putnam, Torrington, and Windsor Locks with targeted resources to increase their capacity to plan for preservation and revitalization initiatives in their downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts. 
 "Historic preservation and the revitalization of our Main Streets create jobs, bring vacant buildings back on the tax rolls and add value and vitality to adjacent buildings and neighborhoods," said John Simone, CMSC President & CEO.  "This year's winners are taking steps to implement these types of positive changes by proactively planning for the growth and improvement of their downtowns."  

The Preservation of Place grant program provides a source of funding for new initiatives that can be integrated into, and leverage, comprehensive Main Street preservation and revitalization programs.  The funds are meant to be flexible to meet individual community need.  "The diversity of locations, from the Northwest Corner of Connecticut to New London, matched with the diversity of projects, from creative placemaking in urban open spaces to organizational and leadership development that will improve the management function in downtown, will allow each community to respond to their greatest current need, actively creating their direction of growth," said Mr. Simone.

The 2015 recipients of Preservation of Place Grant funds are: the Bridgeport Downtown Special Services District for a feasibility study of the creation of a regional food hub and community supported agriculture in downtown Bridgeport; the Town of Canton for a comprehensive market study and brand strategy for Collinsville; the Hartford Business Improvement District for the creation of a community vision plan for a six block area of the Asylum Hill neighborhood; the Town of New Milford for a historic downtown New Milford branding & marketing program; the Town of Newtown for the Sandy Hook Village Signage & Wayfinding Design Plan;  the Town of Putnam for Downtown Putnam design guidelines & standards; the City of Torrington for a Downtown Torrington market study & branding/imaging program; and the Town of Windsor Locks for the historic train station reuse study.

Since 2008, CMSC has awarded $446,130 through the Preservation of Place grant program to twenty four Connecticut communities, leveraging over $1 million in local Main Street initiatives.  The program receives support from the State Historic Preservation Office with funds from the Community Investment Act.

Image source: Connecticut Main Street Center