The Eastern Connecticut Association of REALTORS® (ECAR) and the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) have teamed up to provide placemaking grants to the Norwich Historical Society.
This project will enable all of the small stories about Norwich to be aligned into various walking tours. All of the walking tours will be branded as “Walk Norwich” It is anticipated that these tours will enable visitors and residents to better appreciate Norwich’s heritage. Presently, there are no featured tours to enable tourists to explore the city. It is anticipated this project will fill that need.
Partnering with the Norwich Historical Society are Heritage Groups, Leffingwell House Museum, Slater Memorial Museum, Norwich Community Development Corporation, Norwich Noontime Rotary Club, State of Connecticut Historic Preservation Office, The Last Green Valley, Norwich Historic District Commission, and Otis Library.
The NAR Placemaking Initiative helps to plan, organize, implement and maintain projects to improve a neighborhood with small, inexpensive, incremental projects which will help to make the neighborhood a better place to live, work and play.
Every community has a variety of public spaces, some of which are noticeable and others which may be hidden. Public places most recognized are parks, streets, boulevards, and plazas. But public spaces are also found in between private spaces such as alleys, neglected courtyards, and stairways. These could be a city’s most underutilized and potentially valuable assets.
However, even noticeable public spaces in communities may be unused or underused because of safety concerns or because they have deteriorated — all of which can be improved to increase their usage and usefulness and to strengthen and enrich a community.
Placemaking can enhance a public space and make it come to life.
The ECAR Housing Opportunity Committee administers the Placemaking Initiative in the region and will be seeking grant requests for 2016 from the cities and towns in eastern Connecticut this fall.