Westport Announces Formation Of New Downtown Steering Committee

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The newly-created Downtown Steering Committee will take over management of the Downtown Westport Planning Project.
The newly-created Downtown Steering Committee will take over management of the Downtown Westport Planning Project. Photo Credit: Westport Downtown Merchants Association

WESTPORT, Conn. -- Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe has created a new steering committee to take over management of the Downtown Westport Master Planning Project.

The project was previously approved by the Board of Finance, the Representative Town Meeting and the Planning and Zoning Commission. 

The Downtown Steering Committee, which will succeed the former Downtown 2020 Committee, will provide guidance and technical assistance to RBA, the consultant team contracted to assist Westport in developing the master plan. It will closely collaborate with the Planning and Zoning Commission and specifically with the Planning and Zoning Downtown Subcommittee chaired by Cathy Walsh.

“I thank the members of the Downtown 2020 Committee for their service and valuable contributions over the past two years,'' Marpe said. "In particular, I would like to thank the former chairman, Lou Gagliano, for his vision, initiative and leadership in helping move our downtown planning process to this stage. I look forward to some of the Downtown 2020 members continuing to serve on the new committee and sharing their experience and knowledge.”

Dewey Loselle, a former RTM member who previously worked with the Downtown 2020 Committee, will be appointed to lead the new committee. He will report to Marpe and work to coordinate the efforts of the Steering Committee with other town agencies.

The new committee will work closely with the Historic District Commission’s Village District Study Steering Committee, which is focused on creating a downtown “Village District.” Coordination will also take place with the Department of Public Works, which recently received a $500,000 “Main Street Investment Grant” from the state of Connecticut for sidewalk and other infrastructure improvements, some of which will take place in the downtown area.

Loselle, a retired management consultant previously with Deloitte Consulting, has experience managing complex public sector projects.

Besides Loselle and Walsh, other members of the Downtown Steering Committee are:

  • Alan Hodge – Member, P&Z Commission’s Downtown Subcommittee
  • Mary Young – Deputy director, Planning & Zoning Department
  • Steve Edwards – Director, Public Works Department
  • Don Bergmann – Representative of RTM’s P&Z Committee
  • Lois Shine – Representative of RTM’s Long Range Planning Committee
  • Francis Henkels – Architect, chairman HDC/Chair of Village District Steering Committee
  • Steve Desloge – President, Downtown Merchants Association
  • Morley Boyd – Citizen at Large/Downtown Area Resident
  • Melissa Kane – Citizen at Large
  • Ken Bernhard – Former Downtown 2020 Committee Acting Chairman
  • Robert Jacobs – Architect, former Downtown 2020 Committee Member
  • Gerald Kagan – Architect, former Downtown 2020 Committee Member
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