Laura Budd

Recent Articles

Subway on Main Street Closes After More Than 25 Years

Subway, the national made-to-order sandwich shop that’s operated out of its Main Street location opposite Town Hall for more than 25 years, has closed its New Canaan store. A sign has appeared in its front window saying “Store closed. Reopening under new leadership.”

It isn’t clear whether or when a Subway would reopen at 64 Main St.—company officials could not be reached for comment. Subway has closed hundreds of stores nationwide, faced with a slowdown in sales. Laura Budd of the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce said the organization is “certainly sorry to see Subway leave.”

“We know that it’s popular with the younger kids in town,” Budd told NewCanaanite.com. Continue Reading →

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New Canaan Promotes ‘Tech-Free Family Time’ through ’30 Days of Family’

Town and local nonprofit officials are urging New Canaan families this month to unplug their mobile devices and spend more time communicating directly with each other. The Department of Human Services-led “30 Days of Family” initiative this year has taken up “tech-free family time” as its motto. Unplugging forces family members to talk to each other “with their voices and spend quality time making eye contact and practicing listening skills,” according to Jacqueline D’Louhy, the department’s coordinator of youth and family services. “Think about how much teens ‘talk’ to each other electronically,” D’Louhy said. “Sometimes they’ll be sitting in the same room but never utter a word to one another. Continue Reading →

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Chamber to P&Z: It’s Time To Review New Canaan’s Zoning Regulations for Main and Elm

New Canaan’s charming downtown remains attractive to prospective merchants as well as visitors, though changes in retail in recent years should prompt officials to update some of the zoning regulations that restrict the type of businesses that can occupy street-level storefronts, according to the head of the local Chamber of Commerce. Under the New Canaan Zoning Regulations now (see page 72 here), non-retail uses are largely restricted on the street level throughout the “Retail A” zone (in purple here) of Main and Elm Streets. For example, the only service establishments allowed are on the first floor of any building are “personal service” businesses such as salons. Medical, educational or fitness-related uses are relegated to upper floors or business zones beyond the “magic circle” downtown. Those downtown business zones “have served us well over the years, but the time might have come that we want to consider some of the businesses in the Retail A zones and places like that, that complement retail,” Tucker Murphy, the chamber’s executive director, told members of the Planning & Zoning Commission during their regular meeting on Tuesday night. Continue Reading →

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Officials To Weigh Two Changes to Parking in Downtown New Canaan

Officials on Thursday will consider two changes to parking in New Canaan that are designed to meet the needs of shoppers and diners as well as those who staff downtown shops and restaurants. One change would see the maximum parking time at Morse Court raised from two to three hours, and the other would set aside new premium-priced permits in the Park Street and Playhouse parking lots for workers in the village center. The proposed extra hour at Morse Court could give downtown visitors what appears to be a much-needed buffer when using services-oriented businesses, according to Stacy Miltenberg, interim superintendent of the New Canaan Parking Bureau. “I get feedback from people using the salon on Main Street, getting their hair done and the process is going over two hours and then they have thave somebody run out, or at a doctor in Morse Court, they would get stuck in the waiting room, so in the middle of a procedure their time is running out,” Miltenberg told NewCanaanite.com. “So it seemed that they needed a little longer. Continue Reading →

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‘InstaGroom’: Area Woman Turns Love of Dogs Into Mobile Grooming Biz

Though her dog-centered business is brand new, Marie Maguire’s love of “man’s best friend” goes back decades. A yellow Labrador retriever, ‘Sammy,’ arrived in the Maguire family’s home on the north side of Dublin, Ireland when she was 13. Sammy was “a perfect yellow ball of love and licks” who would “talk” with Maguire and her four siblings on the phone when they were away from home,” Maguire, 43, a Stamford resident, recalled on a recent afternoon. Maguire and her brothers and sisters—Susan, Patrick, Ciaran and Roisin—considered Sammy a “fifth sibling,” she said. Though the beloved yellow Lab has passed, Maguire’s abiding love and respect for dogs has endured, and after eight years of laying the groundwork—with a few detours along the way— she’s recently launched her own mobile dog grooming business. Continue Reading →

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