‘There Has Been a Lot of Abuse’: Commissioner Flags Poor Parking Downtown

The restaurant “bump-outs” and revised parking and sidewalk schemes downtown have led to safety hazards because motorists are pulling into no-parking areas and even blocking crosswalks, official say. Trucks are pulling up along crosswalks so that it’s impossible to see pedestrians, according to Parking Commission Secretary Pam Crum. “There has been a lot of abuse going on as of late,” Crum said during the Commission’s regular meeting, held Sept. 10 via videoconference. 

Crum questioned whether appropriately sized planters could be set up in areas such as Elm Street near Dunkin Donuts in order to prevent vehicles from parking where they shouldn’t. “The planters were there before and it wasn’t a problem,” Crum said.

Commission Recommends Extending Parking Permit Renewals to Jan. 1

Saying they expect New Canaanites to continue working from home through December amid the COVID-19 virus pandemic, town officials last week recommended pushing back the renewal date for those holding permits for commuter lots. Commuter lots such as Lumberyard, Railroad, Richmond Hill and Talmadge Hill should remain free and unregulated through Dec. 31, according to members of the New Canaan Parking Commission. “As long as the town can afford not to charge for these lots, I would say let’s put this off to January 1st,” Commission Chair Keith Richey said during the appointed body’s Sept. 10 meeting, held via videoconference.

‘So Long Summer Sale’ Launches Downtown

A welcome sight returned to downtown New Canaan amid the COVID-19 pandemic Friday, as more than two dozen local merchants took to the sidewalks to sell their wares at bargains in a modified version of the traditional Sidewalk Sale. Designed as a socially distanced and scaled-down version of the bustling midsummer event, the first-ever So Long Summer Sale saw mask-wearing bargain-hunters peruse racks and tables on the one-way stretches of Elm and Forest Streets, both closed to motor vehicle traffic. Laura Budd, who is taking over as executive director of the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce, said the organization was “thrilled with the turnout.”

“Shoppers have been streaming in all day and we have 100% mask compliance,” she said. “We have been in constant contact with all the Merchants out on the street and they feel the event has struck the right balance of business and safety. The weather  looks great for tomorrow and we will have a few new vendors  joining us so we look forward to seeing new and returning shoppers.”

The So Long Summer Sale will run 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. again on Saturday.

Podcast: ‘So Long Summer Sale’ Starts Friday

This week on 0684-Radi0, our free podcast (subscribe here in the iTunes Store), we talk to Laura Budd, who is taking over as executive director of the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce, about the So Long Summer Sale that will run downtown 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Here are recent episodes of 0684-Radi0: