July 3, 2022

Essex Awarded $471,500 State Grant for Town Hall and Park Improvements

Needed repairs to Essex Town Hall parking lot (photo by Jerome Wilson)

ESSEX –– The town has been awarded a $471,500 state Small Town Economic Assistance Program (STEAP) grant for a series of improvements to the town hall property and the abutting Grove Street Park.

The grant, which the town applied for over the summer, was announced in a visit late last month by Gov. Dannel Malloy. The project includes repaving the town hall parking lot, including a section that remains unpaved, reconstructing the tennis courts at the adjoining park, constructing a new handicapped accessible children’s playscape at the park, and improving the crosswalk across Grove Street to the Essex Library.

Restructuring of Essex tennis courts (photo by Jerome Wilson)

First Selectman Norman Needleman said this week the project would be coordinated by members of the economic development and parks and recreation commissions working with Highway Department Foreman David Caroline. There would be no formal building committee. Needleman said the improvements, which are expected to be completed in 2013, would create “more of a feeling of connectivity,” between the town hall/park property and the library.

Improving crosswalk from Town Hall to Essex Library (photo by Jerome Wilson)

Essex has been awarded several STEAP grants since the program began in 2002, with the grants funding the public restroom at Essex Town Park, new streetlights, sidewalk and street improvements in Essex village and Ivoryton, and a new boat launch on the Connecticut River at the end of Main Street.