Feds Find Dozens of ADA Violations at New Canaan Public Facilities

Federal officials in an investigation regarding violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act have cited dozens of barriers to access at public facilities throughout New Canaan. Launched last summer, the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation led to an “on-site survey” of five public facilities in New Canaan in May, according to a Site Survey Report issued Oct. 7 by Diane Perry, an architect in the DOJ’s Disability Rights Section. The investigation at the five facilities—Waveny House, Town Hall campus, Mead Park, Firehouse, Waveny paddle courts and hut and playing fields at New Canaan High School—yielded a total of 109 citations, according to the report, obtained by NewCanaanite.com. 

The barriers range from what appear to require small changes, such as new or relocated signage, to substantial infrastructure projects, such as entirely new accessible routes where none currently exist or changes to the slope of walkways and ramps already in place. In some cases, the DOJ cited barriers following very recent projects.

Town Purchasing Its First-Ever Electric Vehicles

The town for the first time is purchasing electric vehicles or “EVs” for its municipal fleet, officials said Tuesday. 

The two 2023 Chevy Bolts that New Canaan is purchasing from New Canaan’s Karl Chevrolet will be used by multiple members of all Land Use Departments at Town Hall, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann. Those include Planning & Zoning, Inland Wetlands, Health, Engineering and the Assessor, Mann told the Board of Selectmen at its regular meeting, held at Town Hall and via videoconference. 

“It will be our first in town,” Mann said during the meeting. “So it will be a nice place to start with our Land Use departments.”

First Selectman Kevin Moyinhan and Selectmen Kathleen Corbet and Nick Williams voted 3-0 in favor of the $65,844 contract with Karl Chevy. They are replacing old police vehicles that were shifted to the municipal fleet after exceeding their useful lives, Mann said. Those vehicles, now nearly 20 years old, will be used for scrap and sold for $500, he said.

St. Aloysius Parish Reimagines Campus with Planned ‘Education and Faith Center’

St. Aloysius Parish is preparing to build a new 26,000-square-foot facility on its campus at South Avenue and Cherry Street that will include a new school, community room, youth center, meeting spaces and large green area connecting all parts. The project is estimated to cost $26 million—more than half of which already has been raised—with construction planned to start in the spring, according to the Rev. Rob Kinnally, pastor at St. Aloysius. “This project re-imagines our parish campus to accommodate our growth from 2,600 families to more than 3,000 families in the past six years,” Kinnally said in a press release.