A Come Home to Downtown Pilot Community
Middletown was one of three pilot communities chosen to participate in the first year of the Come Home to Downtown program. This program, which is supported by the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA), aims to strengthen communities by creating specific strategies to redevelop vacant or underutilized buildings into a mix of uses and housing choices.
A lively downtown business district, scenic Main Street and historic, yet underutilized downtown buildings made Middletown a natural choice for Come Home to Downtown’s inaugural year. Strong municipal leaders that support mixed-use development added to the appeal of selecting this vibrant downtown, as did the availability of small buildings with vacant upper space available on Main Street.
Engaging an expert team of consultants, CMSC provided Middletown officials and the property owner of 418-426 Main Street with extensive customized technical assistance. This entailed working with them to develop viable redevelopment options that included determining likely financing needs and an audit evaluating the walkability and accessibility of the downtown. The CMSC team also offered guidance to local officials on how to facilitate mixed-use development in the downtown, assessing issues such as zoning and regulatory requirements.
At the close of the program’s first year, CMSC issued an extensive report of its findings, and continues to inform the industry about this unique program and the lessons learned from Middletown and the other Come Home to Downtown communities through presentations at local, regional and national conferences. In recognition of our outreach efforts, CMSC was awarded the Connecticut Chapter of the American Planning Association’s (CCAPA) 2013 Education & Outreach Award.
Documents and Other Information
Middletown Final Report – This report offers an in-depth look at the technical assistance provided to Middletown through the Come Home to Downtown program. You’ll find extensive information on the redevelopment options provided to the small property owner, an assessment of relevant policies and regulations in Middletown, as well as seven key findings discerned by the CMSC team as a result of this work.
Come Home to Downtown Program Overview – This PowerPoint presentation offers an overview of the Come Home to Downtown program in Middletown and was presented to the public at a Community Meeting in Middletown on June 11, 2013.
Middletown Walkability Study – Provides an assessment of downtown Middletown’s walkability and connectivity with surrounding areas. It was presented to the public at a Community Meeting in Middletown on June 11, 2013.
418-426 Main Street, Middletown, Redevelopment Options – The presentation shows the redevelopment options prepared for, and presented to, the owners of the small downtown Middletown property chosen to participate in the Come Home to Downtown program. The redevelopment options were presented to the public at a Community Meeting in Middletown on June 11, 2013.
Middletown Eye article – This local news article provides an overview of the Community Meeting held on June 11, 2013 when CMSC presented the Come Home to Downtown program and its work with the Middletown community to the public.