CMSC's John Simone looks on as Jimmie and Jennifer Brown, owners of The Fire Pizza Company, serve pizza out of their food truck Tuesday in the courtyard outside Middlesex Community College on West Main Street. Photo Credit: Andrew Ragali, Meriden Record-Journal

CMSC’s John Simone looks on as Jimmie and Jennifer Brown, owners of The Fire Pizza Company, serve pizza out of their food truck Tuesday in the courtyard outside Middlesex Community College on West Main Street. Photo Credit: Andrew Ragali, Meriden Record-Journal

Residents, business owners and developers joined CMSC and Meriden city officials to talk about the Come Home to Downtown program over pizza and cannolis, reports the Meriden Record-Journal.  The meeting also sought public comment on what draws people to live and spend time downtown.

Meriden and the building at 1-3 Colony Street were selected to participate in the second year of CMSC’s Come Home to Downtown program, which offers free architectural services and other benefits aimed at converting commercial and office space into apartments.  Currently, plans are being developed to convert office space at the Colony Street building into 16 apartments through the CMSC program. The project is seen as a “pipeline for other projects” because of its visibility and location, said CMSC’s Susan Westa.

If successfully developed, the building can be used as a model for others. CMSC has helped the owner develop plans and a preliminary budget.  A final report and plan will be submitted and made available online as a resource for others.

Free pizza draws people to talk about downtown Meriden’s future