Mayor Visits Businesses Along Capitol Avenue Friday

by Categorized: Business, Busway, Neighborhoods, Pedro Segarra Date:

Mayor Pedro Segarra stopped in to several businesses along Capitol Avenue Friday morning to talk  about the city’s decision not to oppose the closure of Flower Street to pedestrian and bicycle traffic, officials in his office said.

Residents of the Asylum Hill and Frog Hollow neighborhoods say the CTfastrak busway is splitting the city and hurting businesses by shutting off Flower Street, a north-south connector between the insurance office buildings on Farmington Avenue and the merchants of Capitol Avenue. They had been counting on Segarra to fight the state’s plans to cut off pedestrian and bike traffic and expressed frustration when he abandoned the battle earlier this week. Motor vehicle traffic has been blocked off on Flower Street since December.

Mayor Pedro Segarra meets with local business owner Virginia Iacobucci Friday. Photo courtesy of the mayor's office.

Mayor Pedro Segarra meets with local business owner Virginia Iacobucci Friday. Photo courtesy of the mayor’s office.

Several residents and business owners said Thursday that city leadership owed them an explanation for why it pulled out of the fight. They apparently got some answers on Friday.

“He acknowledged that it wasn’t handled very well,” said Virginia Iacobucci, who owns the La Paloma Sabanera coffeehouse on Capitol Avenue. “He said he’s very mindful of how it’s going to affect us, the businesses, here on Capitol. He said previous [Hartford] mayors have been criticized for not working more closely with the state, and he had to make a comprise somewhere. He did promise me that the businesses here can meet with [city Development Director] Thom Deller to see how we can at least minimize the damage done by closing Flower Street.  We’re supposed to meet sometime in coming week or two.”

“I felt better that he came by,” she added.

The state department of transportation has insisted that it had studied every possible way of getting pedestrians through the busway crossing at Flower Street, but couldn’t come up with a safe and affordable answer.

Wedged between the Aetna property and the Hartford Courant’s building, the right of way for Amtrak and the busway is too narrow for a traditional crossing like one that will exist less than 2 miles away, where the busway crosses Hamilton Street.

Mayor Pedro Segarra meets with business owners along Capitol Avenue Friday. Photo courtesy of the mayor's office.

Mayor Pedro Segarra meets with business owners along Capitol Avenue Friday. Photo courtesy of the mayor’s office.

A stream of buses and trains will pass through the Flower Street crossing every day, and there’s no practical way to install crossing gates as well as a safety island for pedestrians, the DOT said.

A decision on the closure of Flower Street will likely be issued by May 20, officials said. The DOT has said it wants to close Flower Street access for a month this spring during construction, and then shut it down altogether in the fall.


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5 thoughts on “Mayor Visits Businesses Along Capitol Avenue Friday

  1. Prince2 examination

    Does your site have a contact page? I’m having problems locating it but, I’d like
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  2. BShirts

    Wow Pedro,
    you’re BSing these businesses, what is the city going to do for them? Your Development Dick is going to do what for these businesses?

    Papi, don’t BS the masses, its makes you look real BAD(Mierdad bad).

  3. Charlie

    Didn’t we learn from what I84 did to the city. Can’t stop the bus way but to split a neighborhood will be a nightmare. 84 cut Hartford in two. Will the bus way?

    1. ccbeachcomber

      This is true. The city, with the state in agreement if not partnership, long ago identified the I-84/I-91 interchange in the middle of downtown Hartford as the one major impediment to developing Hartford, cutting off the North End with the mainstream. And only until recently, city planners have been looking at ways to minimize or eliminate this barrier. Yet our miserable governor…

  4. thomas

    Mayor Segarra, let me get this straight. It is more important to compromise with the state than to defend Hartford’s Small Business. Interesting how this was dropped right after Max on Main Gate…guess he didn’t want the AG to get involved….

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