Thursday, September 27, 2012

Improving Transit in Manchester

Please join the Town of Manchester and the Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) on Thursday, October 11th for a public meeting on improving public transit in Manchester. The event will take place at the MCC on Main Gallery, 903 Main Street. An Open House will be held from 6:00-7:00 and a facilitated discussion will begin at 7:00.

The Manchester 2020 Draft Plan recommends improving public transit within Manchester and better connecting Manchester with upcoming regional transit improvements including commuter rail and bus rapid transit.  This study and this meeting will directly address these goals and look at how existing bus service could be enhanced and improved.  We hope you will attend to share your thoughts and ideas.

The Manchester bus study is a piece of the Sustainable Knowledge Corridor project, a $2 million grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development that is looking at how our Hartford/Springfield region can grow economically and sustainably. For more information, please visit:

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Manchester 2020 Plan is Here!

It has been a long time coming, but the Manchester 2020 plan is here! The Planning and Zoning Commission adopted the Plan on December 17, 2012 and it will be effective on January 14, 2013. The Commission will move onto implementing the recommendations in the Plan. Click on the links below to access a pdf of the Executive Summary and the full document. Thanks again for your interest and participation in Manchester 2020!

Manchester 2020 Executive Summary
Manchester 2020 Full Plan

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Draft 2020 Recommendations Now Available for Comment

The following slides include the draft Manchester 2020 recommendations from the March 13 Recommendation Roll-Out at Manchester Country Club.  The Planning and Zoning Commission and Planning Department staff are interested in your comments. Please use the comment section at the bottom of the post to  provide your comments, suggestions or questions. You can enlarge each slide by clicking on it. 

This slide shows how the recommendations are organized.
This slide shows the five growth management principles.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Last Call for Recommendation Roll-Out

This is a final reminder about tomorrow evening's Recommendation Roll-Out. Tuesday, March 13 at 7 PM at Manchester Country Club. We hope you plan on joining us to provide comments and suggestions on the draft 2020 recommendations, which are available HERE. Please call the Planning Department at 860-647-3044 with any questions or to RSVP.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Tonight's Roll-Out Postponed

Tonight's Recommendation Roll-Out has been postponed due to the weather forecast. We have moved the meeting to March 13 at 7 PM at Manchester Country Club. We hope you will still plan on joining us. The recommendations continue to be available HERE. Please call the Planning Department at 860-647-3044 with any questions. Enjoy the snow!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Draft Recommendations Are Here!

The Draft Manchester 2020 recommendations are now available for the first time HERE. These recommendations come directly out of the Manchester 2020 planning process, including the 2020 Planning Academy, Quadrant Discovery Workshops, Quadrant Summit, 20/20 Vision and focused thematic workshops. Hundreds of members of the Manchester community have been involved in this comprehensive and intensive planning process. These recommendations offer the beginnings of a road map for achieving Manchester's vision for the year 2020.

We hope you will be able to join us for the Recommendation-Roll Out on Wednesday, February 29th at 7 PM at Manchester Country Club. The Planning and Zoning Commission and Planning Department staff are anxious to hear your comments, questions and input on these draft recommendations.

RSVPs are not required, but are appreciated. Please email or call the planning department at 860-647-3044 to RSVP, or for more information. Those who are unable to attend are also invited to submit comments electronically or by phone. Thanks in advance for your continued interest in Manchester’s future!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Recommendation Roll-Out! February 29

Make sure you don't miss the Manchester 2020 Recommendation Roll-Out on Wednesday, February 29 at 7 p.m. at Manchester Country Club!

The Manchester community has been hard at work over the past year and a half, developing a vision and plan for what kind of community and place Manchester will be in the year 2020. Hundreds of residents, business owners, board and commission members and other stakeholders have participated in what we have called the Manchester 2020 planning process. The Planning and Zoning Commission and Town Staff are now ready to present the draft recommendations to be included in the Plan. We need your input, comments and suggestions.

These recommendations will be presented at the Recommendation Roll-Out at 7 pm on February 29 at Manchester Country Club. All members of the public are invited to attend. Participants will be invited to comment on the draft recommendations and given information on how to access a draft of the entire Manchester 2020 Plan for the first time.

RSVPs are not required, but are appreciated. Please email or call the planning department at or 860-647-3044 to RSVP. Thanks in advance for your continued interest in Manchester’s future!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Downtown Market Study Release

During the Manchester 2020 planning process many participants expressed how vital Downtown Manchester is to the community and the importance of strengthening the district moving forward. While the 2020 planning process has been going on, a project analyzing market conditions has been occurring on a parallel track. On Thursday, January 26, nearly 100 people packed into the Elks' Club to hear about the findings of this Downtown Manchester market study. The study was broken down into three components: A customer household telephone survey to gauge people's attitudes and opinions of Downtown; a market analysis that looked at the types of businesses and uses for which there is a market Downtown; and a physical assessment that looked at the condition of Downtown as a whole and certain key buildings. Some of the report's major findings are listed below. The entire report can be viewed HERE.

Consumer Household Survey
  • Over 90% of respondents were very or somewhat familiar with Downtown.
  • Over 75% of respondents have a very or somewhat favorable opinion of Downtown.
  • There are no real or perceived barriers keeping residents of Manchester and surrounding towns from visiting Downtown.
  • The great majority of respondents said they would frequent Downtown more often if there was more to do.
Market Analysis
  • While Downtown was once a regional retail center, it now functions more as a service hub.
  • Downtown has ample parking and high traffic counts.
  • While there is less retail than there used to be, niche, locally-owned retail is still critical to Downtown's success.
  • The Downtown office market is stable and well-established.
  • Downtown has seen recent growth in the restaurant sector and there is a market for more.
  • There are opportunities to improve the existing housing stock through focusing on younger workers, artists and the creative class.
  • There is potential for making a destination out of arts, culture and entertainment-related attractions.

Physical Assessment

  • Downtown's unique and diverse architecture is a major asset.
  • The great majority of Downtown buildings are in excellent or very good condition.
  • Historic buildings are a great asset but often difficult and expensive to maintain.
  • Work is required to many buildings to make them accessible and compliant.

As part of the project, the consultant team is preparing marketing brochures that will be used to recruit the specific types of businesses called for in the report. The Town and the Special Services District will now create an action plan in order to implement the report's recommendations. This will include meeting with current owners, representatives from financial institutions and the real estate community, to relay relevant findings and begin actively recruiting potential Downtown businesses.

To read more about the report and the presentation, please follow these press links: