Step Up Connecticut is looking for healthy and able residents, 18+ years old to step up and assist in the fight against COVID-19. From substitute teachers to testing site volunteers, nursing home and hospital workers, to food distribution and outreach — you can help make a difference. We aren’t just looking for medical volunteers and staff. We need everyone who can help — now more than ever!
⛄ Happy Holidays! the 2020 December Newsletter is out, and it’s more stuffed than last week’s turkey 🦃 Inside the month’s publication WestCOG includes Landuse Planning Guidance for Wireless and 5G, resources for hiring consultants, COVID-19 Volunteer/employment opportunities, and even a festive data present! That’s right, but you’d have to click in to find out.
The Western Connecticut Council of Governments authorized the creation of a task force to develop a coordinated telecommunications strategy to address the emergence of fifth generation broadband, a key recommendation in its recently adopted Regional Plan of Conservation and Development. This is the first study conducted of its kind in the state of Connecticut that comprehensively addresses the municipal challenges and opportunities offered by fifth generation broadband services.
Because of the range of complex issues associated with siting, public safety, land use and regulations at both the state and federal level for the telecommunications industry, the report provides an in-depth analysis of the scope of municipal authority to regulate telecommunications systems in the state of Connecticut- including small cell wireless facilities associated with fifth generation broadband. The task force met with numerous subject matter experts and reviewed hundreds of regulations and alternate strategies across the country and state to identify six major strategies that will enable municipalities to develop customized regulatory and business approaches to develop 21st century wireless services in their communities. The final recommendations report summarizes the benefits and elements of each strategy and provides a model right of way ordinance, a model municipal ordinance, identified resources and recommended improvements to land use controls based on a comprehensive review of all the state’s municipal zoning regulations. To complement the regulatory strategies mentioned above, the group also identified best practices for the development of licensing strategies aimed at ensuring that public safety, environmental protection and siting decisions are balanced with the region’s desperate need for improved high-speed telecommunications services to meet the need of the businesses, residents and local governments.
The importance of this work has been heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic, making our dependence high-speed telecommunications for remote learning, work, and social life even more critical than when the task force first convened in March of this year. It is a blueprint for municipal action consistent with the Federal Communications Commissions’ small cell wireless facilities mandate and should be of statewide value to all 169 municipalities concerned with the deployment of fifth generation broadband.
The October 2020 Newsletter is action packed. WestCOG has won a huge grant for Transit Planning, developed a service of preselected engineering consultants, and has summarized a year’s worth of work in the 2020 Annual Report. All this and more in the October 2020 Newsletter.
The Draft 2021-2024 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) Public Process is underway and hopes to hear from you. Join the public meeting this Tuesday September 22nd with the HVMPO from 7-8PM and the SWRMPO meeting from 8-9PM.
The TIP is a dynamic list of all highway and public transit projects proposed to be undertaken utilizing Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration funding during federal fiscal years 2021-2024. The Draft TIP is being updated for both the HVMPO and SWRMPO, learn more at their respective public process websites!
WestCOG’s September 2020 Newsletter is out! Click in to see the free data we have available, Opportunities to comment on Transportation Projects in the Region, a new CTDOT PodCast, and a Bicycle Pedestrian Grant Opportunity! 🚲😊
The MAP Forum, in partnership with the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the New York City Department of Transportation and the New Jersey Department of Transportation conducted an informal survey of truck drivers serving the Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania region in May 2020. WestCOG is a participant in the MAP Forum, along with several other Connecticut COGs and planning organizations in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Prior to the pandemic, the lack of adequate truck parking had long been recognized as a constraint on the efficient movement of goods in the multistate region surrounding New York City. The pandemic put a spotlight on the issue, as some rest areas and services (including restaurants and public restrooms) were temporarily closed.
Collectively, the agencies decided to develop one survey to gauge the issues truck drivers were facing during the pandemic and to better understand their parking needs. The survey’s intent was to help identify and assess additional measures—such as the temporary parking facilities established in New York City—to ease the delivery of day-to-day and emergency supplies. Going forward, the results will also help inform ongoing discussions about longer-term truck parking needs in the four-state area.