ERIN STEWART: POCD plan provides blueprint for city's future development

Published on Tuesday, 7 September 2021 11:59

Mayor of New Britain

I have lived in New Britain my entire life, and it is both my professional and personal goal to see my community thrive. It is this desire to make New Britain the best place it can be for all who live here that is the driving force behind the decisions I make as your mayor.

There has been an economic development boom happening in this city unlike anything we have seen in decades. The development that has been happening in every corner of New Britain is critical to the city’s continued success, and an important piece to attracting new business and encouraging people to call New Britain home. The foundation of this exciting development we have been seeing throughout the city is Plan of Conservation and Development (POCD).

The city’s POCD serves as a “living document,” which will be referred to as a guide to craft policy and make decisions for future development throughout the city. In accordance with State Statute, we just updated this plan to outline the development and infrastructure improvements the city plans to implement over the next 10 years. We will use this plan as we continue to move New Britain toward a bright future and improve quality of life, standard of living, and economic security for all who live here.

Over the last decade, New Britain has had successful examples of long term planning studies that have benefited New Britain’s citizens and businesses. The city has also established committees such as the mayor’s Smart City Initiative and the TOD (Transit Oriented Development) committee. Both of these initiatives were started in order to create infrastructure that best serves New Britain. Our new plan will build upon these efforts.

While the POCD creates a long term vision, it also acts as a guide for day to day decisions. The plan does not solely exist as a static blueprint; it is rather a set of guidelines that can be uniquely implemented to individual projects. It can be applied as the needs of the city change year to year. The POCD will continue to help diversify New Britain’s economy, as we open up to more new industries ever year. “The Hardware City” has become a hub for modern hardware, aerospace and metals, as well as leaders in the healthcare industry. I am looking forward to continuing that growth.

Our updated POCD represents a culmination of hard work and creative visioning, brought to life through cooperation among city staff, our consultant SLR, our residents, and city stakeholders. The process through which we developed the POCD has been as important as the product itself. One of my responsibilities as your mayor is integrating your needs and desires for your community into the future plans for our city. Through the process of updating this plan, I had the privilege of hearing so many diverse perspectives which was inspiring and has influenced my vision for a better New Britain. Now, we have a shared plan of action that we will use to guide future growth, development, and preservation goals for our great city.

Erin Stewart is the mayor of New Britain

Posted in New Britain Herald, Columns, New Britain on Tuesday, 7 September 2021 11:59. Updated: Tuesday, 7 September 2021 12:01.