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Town of West Hartford Reschedules ‘UConn Visioning’ Forum

Due to an overwhelming advance response from the West Hartford community, the UConn Visioning forum will be rescheduled and restructured to accommodate more people.

By Ronni Newton

The Town of West Hartford announced Monday that nearly 500 people have already expressed interest in attending a forum regarding the future of the former 58-acre UConn West Hartford campus, and changes to the date and the format are being made in order to accommodate as many attendees as possible.

The forum was originally scheduled as one session at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 21, but is now scheduled to be held as three 90-minute sessions on Wednesday, Feb. 28. The sessions will begin at 4, 6, and 8 p.m. in the Town Hall auditorium, 50 South Main St. All will begin with an identical presentation and will include the opportunity for break-out sessions.

The forum will be facilitated by consulting firm Milone & MacBroom, which has been hired to assist the town with the process. Topics to be addressed will include the town’s history with the property, and a review of existing conditions as well as impact assessment for a variety of potential redevelopment options.

“The forum will feature the results of the 13-question survey on how the West Hartford UConn property should be used, and presentations by town staff and Milone & MacBroom, the town’s consulting firm that specializes in engineering, planning, landscape architecture, and environmental science and services,” Town Planner Todd Dumais said in a statement.

According to town officials, more than 2,000 people have already responded to the online survey with their feedback about the property and ideas for redevelopment.

The survey will remain open for responses through Friday, Feb. 16. If you have not taken the survey, click here to complete it.

“There is still time to share your thoughts. The more feedback we receive, the better we can plan for the future,” said Dumais.

Based on the results of the participatory engagement process, the Town Council will adopt a Community Vision for the property, and then hopes to collaborate with UConn on marketing to recruit development partners.

“The Town Council wants to hear from our residents and taxpayers – what do you see as best future use or combination of uses for the former UCONN West Hartford campus? What types of uses do you think would be compatible with the community’s character and would enhance our local economy and quality of life?” Town Manager Matt Hart said in a statement. “The Town will utilize this feedback from our residents to prepare a community vision to help guide future development options for this very important parcel.”

Members of the public who are interested in attending one of the three forums, at 4, 6, or 8 p.m. on Feb. 28, can sign up by clicking here. In the event of snow or other inclement weather, the forum will be held on March 7.

Any questions or written comments should be addressed to Town Planner Todd Dumais and can be emailed to [email protected] or mailed to: Town of West Hartford, Attn: Town Planner,  50 South Main St., Room 214, West Hartford, CT 06107.

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