MANCHESTER — Save this date: May 18, 2017. That's when a regionwide party will be held to celebrate the three-mile extension of the Charter Oak Greenway trail connecting Manchester to Bolton and Vernon.
That's a pledge state and town officials made Thursday morning when they gathered at the eastern terminus of the current trail along Camp Meeting Road.
Under the $6.5 million project, the trail — which currently runs from the Connecticut River in East Hartford through Manchester — will continue 2.75 miles through Manchester into Bolton and end at Bolton Notch State Park.The trail will connect with the Hop River Trail, which runs to Willimantic and Vernon, as part of the state's 200-mile portion of a 3,000-mile commuter and recreational linear park along the Eastern Seaboard.
State Department of Transportation Commissioner James P. Redeker said funding for the trail is part of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's five-year transportation "ramp-up plan." An additional $10 million a year will be invested to close gaps in the state's multiuse trails, and $1.2 million has been earmarked for trail maintenance. Redeker said the multiuse trails have become "a vital part of our community. CLICK TITLE TO CONTINUE
Is a Ryan Speakership Good for Construction?
With the election of Rep. Paul Ryan as Speaker of the House, he might help spur Congress in a new direction. From the perspective of the nation’s construction industry, that would be a good thing.
It is not as if Ryan is unaware of the industry. His great-grandfather took his team of mules and founded an earthmoving company that today, 130 years later, is Ryan Incorporated Central., a Wisconsin site-work firm with projects across Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states.
Ryan is someone John Boehner’s House antagonists ought to be able to embrace. Like many of the so-called Tea Party enthusiasts, Ryan is an economic conservative with credentials going clear back to Jack Kemp and Ronald Reagan. None of his peers in the self-described Freedom Caucus can boast the same.
He voted against the 2009 stimulus package because he correctly saw it as a waste of money. President Obama ruefully acknowledged his almost $900 billion spending package failed to create lasting jobs and kick-start construction projects, saying they apparently weren’t as shovel-ready as he’d imagined. A missed opportunity for builders. CLICK TITLE TO CONTINUE
O&G may keep Waterbury school pact
Construction consultant is city's choice from 6 bidders
WATERBURY — School officials are close to signing a contract that will extend the relationship with their long-term school construction consultant for up to five years at a cost of up to $3.8 million.
Torrington-based O&G Industries has helped develop and oversee school construction projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars during the past decade due to a series of contract extensions granted by the Board of Education This is the first time since O&G first began as the city's chief school construction consultant that it's had competition for the job. Six firms responded to a request-for-proposals issued by the city.
The offers of the other five firms were not available Thursday night as the school board reviewed the proposal at a public meeting. Members of the board had no questions or comments.
The contract time period is backdated to Sept. 1 of this year and locks the city in with O&G for three years at a cost of $2.6 million. After that, the board has the option of extending the contract for $598,385 for a fourth year and $590,756 for a fifth year. Paul Guidone, chief operating officer for city schools, noted these are the maximum costs in any given year, and it's possible that the bill will be less based upon the amount of construction conducted in any given year.
O&G's bills have landed $1.6 million under the maximum allowed by contract over the past decade, Guidone said. O&G is the recommendation of a selection committee including school board members Charles L. Stango, Ann M. Sweeney and Jason Van Stone; along with City Purchasing Director Rocco Orso; Joseph Geary, chief of staff to the mayor; Guidone and Interim Chief Operating Officer Gary Miller. School board member Thomas Van Stone attended the interview.
The board is expected to vote on the contract at its meeting Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Waterbury Arts Magnet School.
Despite local rejection of Bradley International Airport casino, Connecticut legislature could overrule selectmen
SPRINGFIELD ‒ Efforts to place a casino at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Conn. hit a major stumbling block late Tuesday, with the city's selectmen rejecting a proposal to submit a bid for casino.
But despite selectmen voting two-to-one against the bid, which would've signaled Windsor Lock's interest in a casino to the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes, at least one state representative is eyeing a tweak of the state's new casino law to force a potential casino into the airport against local elected officials' wishes.
Rep. Peggy Sayers, D-Windsor Locks, hinted that the Connecticut legislature could consider allowing the tribal nations to directly enter into casino discussions with the airport - something currently not permitted under state law, according to the Hartford Courant. Connecticut lawmakers recently passed legislation requiring casino bids to contain sign-offs by municipalities where they would be built. And Sayers mention of a workaround would still need legislative action and approval to come to fruition.
Legislative approval is also needed before construction would begin at a casino, which would pose competition for the nearby planned MGM Springfield casino just over the border. CLICK TITLE TO CONTINUE