Lots happening this week! Live music, mosquitoes, and transit talk. Special Happy Birthday to our fearless leader John Dankosky and our most helpful producer Heather Brandon. We’re still celebrating in the newsroom!
MONDAY: Big Bang Economic Development (rebroadcast)
Today, the “big bang theory.” Not the kind that Ira Flatow talks about onScience Friday, but the kind that city leaders talk about when they want to make a splash, to revitalize their city, to get millions in taxes. These urban “big bangs” are often pipe dreams that never get beyond an architect’s sketch. But sometimes they do become reality – with mixed results. Today, we’ll consider two “big bang” projects – one in New Haven that went bust before it ever happened, and one in New London that could still boom, even after a contentious battle that ended up in the Supreme court. But first, the city of Bridgeport announced that Bass Pro Shops will become the first big tenant in the Steelepoint development. Yes, the long-rumoured plan to use vacant industrial land with prime water frontage is actually close to becoming a reality. But, of course, after 30-odd-years of on again/off again promises, many city residents are still a bit skeptical. We’ll talk about the “big bang” theory and urban redevelopment. Can it work in Bridgeport? What about New Haven and New London?
TUESDAY: On Track for CT Fastrak
The rapid transit busway planned between Hartford and New Britain – dubbed “CT Fastrak” – is beginning construction. We’ll check in on its progress – there have already been a few bumps along the way. We’ll talk to the DOT, a transit planner, and town officials. And we want to hear from you: What will the busway do for you? How will it get you to or from work, shopping, school, and recreation? Join us as we weigh best planning practices against realistic needs.
WEDNESDAY: Those Pesky Skeeters
The summer barbeque usually consists of some grilling, a little badminton, and of course – swatting away mosquitoes. Last week, the State Mosquito Management Program said the first Connecticut resident this year was infected with the West Nile virus. Coming up, we’ll talk about mosquitoes and the diseases they carry. In Texas, they’re spraying insecticide from planes after West Nile affected over 200 people there. We’ll also talk with a researcher who has figured out how tiny drones can imitate mosquitoes during rain storms.
THURSDAY: Regional Roundtable: Casinos, Lobsters, and Presidential Politics
Could we someday have the“Springfield Strip?” Yesterday MGM unveiled their plans to revive the struggling Massachusetts city by pumping 800 million dollars into a gambling resort, entertainment complex, and housing development. It’s one of several proposals on the table as Mass tries to take on Connecticut casinos. In New Hampshire, casinos are on the back burner, but political madness is front and center. President Obama was just there, Mitt Romney has his camp set up, and the race for the vote is on in New England’s only “swing” state. And in Maine, it’s more lobster business. Warmer waters have caused an overabundance of soft shell sea creatures, forcing prices way down. It’s causing all sorts of problems for lobstermen in Maine and Canada. Today it’s a regional reporter roundtable. Don’t think what happens in neighboring states doesn’t affect you. Presidential politics, high class casinos, and loads of lobsters!