This week on ‘0684-Radi0’ (hit ‘Listen in Browser’ above on your smartphone), we explore an idea from Parking Commissioner Peter Ogilvie. This installment of 0684-Radi0 is sponsored by April Kaynor and Kelly DeFrancesco, luxury property specialists with William Raveis Real Estate.
New Canaan’s Suzanne Nardi had been looking at a commercial space in Westport to launch a new art- and home-oriented business when an opportunity popped up here in town just a few months ago. A former online brand marketer who developed her own interior decorating business while raising two kids, Nardi heard from a friend that the owner of Ally-Bally-Bee on Elm Street had taken a new job and was looking for someone to take over the handcrafted gift shop. Nardi had been a patron of Ally-Bally-Bee and liked the co-op model shop at 134 Elm St., and saw an opportunity to assume an established business in a commercial space already fit out where she could make her own mark.
“I felt like it was meant to be,” Nardi said Tuesday morning as deliverymen dropped off a package of the carefully selected merchandise that she’s laying out in a reimagined sales floor. “I am feeling very nervous and very excited,” she said. “I just want to open the door.
Though some are eager to preserve forever a frequently used pedestrian alley downtown, officials say, the town attorney is warning that doing so through an easement could hamstring future municipal leaders. The alley that runs alongside the Playhouse and Le Pain Quotidien, connecting Elm Street to the parking lots behind it, is town-owned property. Though it could be transferred into a trust and then placed under an easement that would guarantee it serves as a pedestrian walkway in perpetuity, Town Attorney Ira bloom is urging town officials to consider that doing so could restrict future generations in unforeseen ways, First Selectman Kevin Moynihan said. Asked by a committee of the Planning & Zoning Commission to look into the possibility of an easement, Moynihan said he called on Bloom to investigate it.
“Some people want to protect it in perpetuity,” Moynihan said. “The counter argument is that you don’t want to restrict future generations of leaders about what to do 100 years from now.”
The volunteer group that formed a few months ago to continue Christmas Eve caroling in New Canaan is seeking permission to create a flagstone terrace at the top of God’s Acre that would serve as a public gathering space year-round where the Town Band could set up each Dec. 24 for the beloved community tradition. To feature a wall wide enough to sit on and to be stabilized by variously sized boulders dotted with low plantings below, the approximately 18-by-36-foot patio would be located directly across Park Street from the entrance to the Congregational Church, overlooking the new caroling tree, members of the caroling committee told the Historic District Commission during a presentation Thursday. “We are here just to get guidance,” committee member Tucker Murphy said during the Commission’s meeting, held at Town Hall. “We will submit a formal application once that seems to be appropriate.”
Other members of the committee include Steve Benko, Leo Karl III, Steve Karl, Lisa Melland, Keith Simpson and Tom Stadler, she said.
Ultimately, the Commission voted unanimously in favor of the concept of the terrace, calling for more details and visuals, in part to determine just how the new structure would look from different points of view around God’s Acre.
A widely anticipated new dessert option is coming to New Canaan, as Waffle Cabin is slated to open this weekend at Pine Street Concessions.
The hot Belgian sugar waffle shop, already known to scores of New Canaanites from the annual Holiday Stroll and area ski mountains, launches at 12 p.m. Saturday with its new counter at the Pine Street food hall.
“I am so excited,” owner Corey Londoner said. “This has been a long time coming. It is a little surreal that it is finally here and I can’t wait to share these waffles with everyone.”
News that Waffle Cabin would set up a permanent location here created plenty of buzz when Londoner announced her plans in December. With the custom-built counter in place, Waffle Cabin rounds out the offerings at Pine Street Concessions, which also features the wood-fired favorite ‘Dante’s Pizza,’ ’Miyuki,’ an Asian noodle shop with an assortment of snacks and ‘Greens On The Go,’ a California-inspired eatery featuring fresh salads, nutrient-rich grain bowls and artisanal toasts. Set against the parking lot-facing eastern window-wall of the space, Waffle Cabin’s attractive wooden counter helps square off the Concessions’ interior without taking away from its roomy feel, clear outdoor views or ample seating.
Parts of the Waffle Cabin setup are not yet in place, such as its menu board, signs and all-important waffle irons, which arrive Thursday, Londoner said.
Even so, a sign spotlighting several flavors of SoCo Creamery handcrafted ice creams (chocolate chip, vanilla, mint chip, coffee, dirty chocolate, cinnamon, cookies ’n cream and salted caramel) as well as sorbets (raspberry and mango) could be seen behind the counter.
“The new counter came out amazing and it fits into Pine Street Concessions perfectly,” Londoner said. “There have been a bunch of hiccups with it but in the end it was worth all the effort.”
Londoner already has joined the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce, whose executive director, Tucker Murphy, said she’s looking forward to this weekend.