Town of East Windsor
Economic Development Commission
11 Rye Street, P.O. Box 389
Broad Brook, CT 06016
Regular Meeting Minutes
October 18, 2010
I. ESTABLISHMENT OF QUORUM
Members Present: Eric Moffett, James Richards, Richard Covill and Josh Kapelner.
Members unable Matt Crossen
Also in attendance: Laurie Whitten, Town Planner
Mark Simmons, Selectman (Board of Selectmen liaison to EDC)
Ryan Nilsson – Guest
Chairman Moffett called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m. at the Planning & Zoning Office, 11 Rye Street, Broad Brook, CT.
II. APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
MOTION: To approve the minutes of September 20, 2010.
Kapelner / Richards / Unanimous
Mr. Moffett noted that Ryan Nilsson was there to observe the meeting.
III. GENERAL DISCUSSION:
Mr. Richards said that he had an opportunity to go to the ground breaking for the movie studios in South Windsor. He said we have to find a way to work with South Windsor. He said 27 million dollars will be spent up front on local economy. A lot of our hotels are part of their vendors. They will be using local construction and will be hiring local union people.
Temporary Business Signs: Mr. Richards indicated that there has been enforcement of the illegal signs on Route 5 and they are starting to disappear. He noted that the Planning & Zoning Commission is in favor of continuing the temporary signs as long as there is some compliance.
Route 140 Sewers
Mr. Simmons commended the EDC members for a great job. Mr. Moffett said they educated the people. He said the role of the EDC is to try to promote the town and to generate more revenue for the town; they work with other agencies such as the Board of Selectmen. Mr. Covill said a lot of time and effort went into this. Mr. Moffett said they need to work on a vision for that area. He suggested 3 different types of uses: (1) Medical type of campus; (2) mixed use area with housing and business; and (3) light industry, such as industrial labs, offices, etc. Mr. Moffett said they need to meet with the Planning and Zoning Commission. After some discussion, it was agreed that they would have a combined workshop with the Planning & Zoning Commission at their November 9th meeting.
Mr. Moffett suggested getting a consultant to assist them, someone who understands development. Ms. Whitten said from the planning perspective, they need to get together and come up with a plan of attack. They need to have workshops. She indicated that they really need someone that is unbiased and uninvolved. Mr. Richards felt that Planning & Zoning should make the decision on zoning based on what the EDC members envision. The EDC members talked about other developments in the area and felt that these were the types of developments they would like to see there, such as Mansions at Canyon Ridge, Pasco Commons and Evergreen Walk. Further discussion was held regarding the workshops. Ms. Whitten felt the workshops should include all the stakeholders. She said she would talk to the First
Selectman about hiring a consultant.
Mr. Richards said they need to come up with a time frame. Mr. Moffett said they will be meeting with PZC on November 9th. At the next EDC meeting on November 15th, they can solidify the vision. He suggested they meet with the Board of Selectmen at their December 7th meeting and then get the town involved after that and have a community workshop. January 13th was suggested as a possible date.
Incentive Housing Zone:
Ms. Whitten distributed copies of the first draft of the Incentive Housing Zone Feasibility Study. Ms. Whitten explained that the Incentive Housing Zone was a program from the State to provide workforce housing. She said the Town received a grant from the State to hire the consultants. They focused on Warehouse Point and the Route 140 corridor. They took out environmental
constraints, such as wetlands, and came up with a proposed Incentive Housing Zone (IHZ) which focuses on the northwest section of Route 140. Some of the EDC members expressed concern that their primary focus was on business for that area, and not housing. Ms. Whitten said maybe we can get some good ideas whether we adopt it or not. She said we don’t have to adopt any of this.
Economic Development Issues:
Mr. Kapelner asked about scheduling a function to recognize businesses as they have done in the past. This was briefly discussed. Mr. Moffett suggested that this should be in February.
Mr. Kapelner indicated that he attended the Board of Directors meeting of the East Windsor Chamber. He said one of the things that was discussed at that meeting is that East Windsor has one of New England’s premier attractions: Flaherty Field. He said they need to learn more about it. Mr. Whitten pointed out that it is a State DEP property.
Mr. Moffett noted that the EDC ordinance was passed by the Board of Selectmen and is scheduled to go to a town meeting. He said once it passes, they need to determine who are going to be the regular members and who will be the alternates.
MOTION: To adjourn. Kapelner / Covill / Unanimous
The meeting was adjourned at 8:55 p.m.