Jeff Speck Toward a More Walkable New Canaan

National planning expert Jeff Speck has spent his career studying what makes cities thrive and has boiled it down to one key factor: walkability. From economists, epidemiologists, and environmentalists to preservationists, planners, and parents, all agree that walkable communities are better in just about every way. Speck explains why walking is useful, particularly regarding land-use, zoning, transit, and parking, and then focuses on how, by sharing examples of places where walking is safe, comfortable, and interesting.

Parks Officials To Vote on Shifting Oversight of ‘Bristow Bird Sanctuary’ to Town’s Conservation Commission

Municipal officials are expected Wednesday to recommend transferring responsibility of a wooded town-owned parcel adjoining Mead Park to the Conservation Commission. Enjoyed by neighborhood residents, nature-lovers and leashed-dog walkers, the “Bristow Bird Sanctuary” off of Old Stamford Road long has been under the purview of the New Canaan Parks & Recreation Commission. 

Yet the town’s Conservation Commission “has forestry professionals on the board and they know more about how to handle and manage a sanctuary than we do,” Parks & Rec Commissioner Francesca Segalas said at the group’s most recent meeting. “Plus we haven’t been able to get funds approved for various things we have asked for so we are hoping that in another entity’s hands that it will get the good care and love that it deserves,” Segalas said at the meeting, held Sept. 11 at Lapham Community Center. 

The Commission is scheduled to take up a vote during its regular meeting, to be held at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 10, to transfer responsibility of the park.

Idea To Ban Dogs In Bristow Is Floated Again At Parks & Rec

Is Bristow a town park? Or is it a bird sanctuary? And if Bristow is a bird sanctuary, should dogs be allowed there? Those nagging questions came up again during last Wednesday’s meeting of the Park & Recreation Commission, when commission member Francesca Segalas provided an update on the condition of the preserve, which is adjacent to Mead Park. Segalas’ update wasn’t really supposed to focus on the issue of dogs in the park – but the commission acknowledged that it’s an issue that needs to be addressed again at some point in the future.