Connecticut Appears Ready to Approve Madison Landing, Next to Hammonasset
The project is called Madison Landing. It's proposed for the old Griswold Airport. The reason it's different and imporant is that the developer -- Leyland Alliance -- wants to build in a relatively dense, "traditional" development rather than a less dense sprawl-type development. And they want to build it next to the state's busiest park, which happens to be on Long Island Sound.
Lots of people who I respect, including my friends at Audubon Connecticut, think it's a bad idea. The fellow who writes the Connecticut Smart Growth blog, up in northwestern Connecticut, thinks it's a bad idea too. My opinion is that Connecticut needs to do something to counter prevailing development practices, which have turned much of the state into indistinguishable strips. So if Griswold Airport is going to be developed, then Leyland's plan should get a shot.
But I also agree that the state and the town of Madison should start to talk to Leyland about a sale for preservation. The Courant today says (here) that Leyland isn't interested in selling, but as someone who is in the land preservation business, I can say confidently that what developers say in public isn't always what they say in private. And money talks.
Speaking of which, the Madison residents who are opposing Madison Landing need to put their money where their mouths are, in the form of a local bond issue to raise acquisition funds and also in the form of private donations from their own bank accounts. If protecting Griswold Airport is that important, make a commitment to it.
Here's what I've had to say about Madison Landing in the past.