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Celebrating 20 Years of inspiring great Connecticut downtowns,  
Main Street by Main Street.
Happy New Year!
Our 2016 is off to a great start, with lots of events and activities underway that will help make this a great year for our downtowns. From new members to budding partnerships, we're working hard to help create thriving Main Streets that drive local economies, inspire innovation and turn neighbors into friends.

CMSC Welcomes New Member Communities!
Please join us in welcoming the towns of Burlington, Killingly and Southington to the CMSC member network.
These towns join a statewide network of fellow communities, each dedicated to reinvigorating their commercial centers. They will also enjoy access to CMSC's experienced staff, as well as technical assistance, education and networking opportunities. 

CMSC Announces New Professional Affiliate Membership
CMSC is excited to announce our newest membership category for downtown-related professionals and organizations. 
Open to sole proprietors, academic institutions, firms and nonprofit associations, this new membership is designed to be a win-win, offering CMSC the opportunity to strengthen our relationships with downtown revitalization organizations across the state, while providing our member communities with access to industry leaders in preservation, economic and community development, land use, transportation and responsible growth policies, organizational development, marketing and more. 

Click here to see the growing list of organizations who have joined CMSC in creating vibrant downtowns and Main Streets. 
YES Joins HYPE to Host Commissions on Tap Event
Find out how to help shape your community by joining a local board or commission.
Young Energetic Solutions (YES), a group dedicated to empowering young people to shape vibrant Connecticut communities, joins HYPE, the organization for Hartford-area professionals and entrepreneurs, to host Boards and Commissions on Tap on Monday, February 8.

The event will feature a welcome from Mayor Dan Drew of Middletown. The panel discussion will offer information on how to get involved in shaping your community by joining a local town Board or Commission, as well as the roles and responsibilities of these entities. Attendees will have the opportunity to speak with town representatives from the Hartford region. 
Register here
CMSC Board Member Joins City of Hartford
CMSC Board Member Jamie Bratt appointed Director of Planning & Economic Development.
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin announced several new appointments ahead of his swearing in ceremony, including CMSC Board Member Jamie Bratt as the Director of Planning and Economic Development. "I'm proud to have recruited an experienced and diverse group of nominees who are committed to building a stronger Hartford," said Mayor Bronin of the new appointments.  Read more. . .
Re-Mains of the Day
Staff Changes at Main Street Waterbury
Street Waterbury recently announced the
retirement of Adele DeFrancesco, who was an integral part of their program since 2005, first as a volunteer and then as staff. Friendly and professional with an intense love of Waterbury, Adele will be missed greatly by all of her Main Street friends, including all of us here at CMSC. Filling the void is Dan Pesce, who joins the Main Street Waterbury staff as an associate. A Waterbury resident, Dan recently earned his degree in the Urban Studies Program at the University of Connecticut. Dan is familiar with MSW, having volunteered on the Economic Vitality Committee. In his new role, Dan will be responsible for media & organization communications, committee coordination and volunteer recruiting.

Southington Votes for Walkable, Mixed-Use Development
A new mixed-use development
 linking to Southington's linear trail has gained preliminary approval from the Planning and Zoning commission, reports the Meriden Record-Journal. The plans call for a seven-building retail and restaurant center along the linear trail on West Center Street. Additional site plan and other approvals are still needed before owners can begin developing the 4-acre parcel, but the commission members were pleased with the proposed retail and dining designs. Learn more

Photo Credit: David Sepulveda
Public Art Sweeping Across Westville Village
Westville Village, New Haven, is getting the beauty treatment thanks to a growing number of public art installations, reports the New Haven Independent. Many of the exhibits were originally created as part of the community Artwalk event, and became permanent installations featuring curated, constantly changing works of art, delighting residents and visitors. Click to read more 

▪ CMSC Announces Preservation of Place Grant Recipients - CMSC announced yesterday that seven organizations and municipalities were awarded a total of $80,400 in 2016 Preservation of Place grants. Learn more

▪ CMSC's John Simone Says Downtowns Need Appetite for 'Lasagna' Financing -
CMSC's CEO John Simone was recently interviewed by The Commercial Record about the new tax increment financing legislation passed last year and how downtown revitalization needs "lasagna financing" to be successful. See the article here.
Spotlight on 2015 Awards of Excellence
Starting a Revolution: Integration of Land Use and Transit
CTfastrak: Connecticut's first Bus Rapid Transit System

Recipients: CT Department of Transportation, Capitol Region Council of Governments, Central Connecticut Regional Planning Agency, Federal Transit Administration

"The more convenient public transportation is, the more people will take advantage of it. Livable, walkable and 'bike-able' community development around and near transit stops and stations is what we are trying to achieve. Easy access means increasing ridership."
- James P. Redeker, Commissioner, CT Dept of Transportation

Learn how CTfastrak, the state's first bus rapid transit is transforming Connecticut by offering residents a convenient way to move between cities, attracting millennials and baby boomers, and stimulating millions of dollars in private investment around future stations.

Connecticut Main Street Center