Norwalk Industrial Waterfront Land Use Plan
As an extension of the Norwalk Industrial Zones Study, the City of Norwalk is developing an urban waterfront land use plan. This study will focus on existing and future land use along the waterfront, taking public access and recreation into consideration. The plan will also take a look at information about the water itself and environmental issues, including navigation channels, water quality, and flood hazards.
The final plan will be used to inform future rezoning efforts, among other things, and include:
- Prioritize land use policy which encourages water dependent uses
- Economic development recommendations
- Identified capital projects, paired with suggested timelines and funding sources
Why Create a Plan for Norwalk’s Urban Waterfront?
Urban waterfronts serve many purposes – they are centers for economic activity that are dependent on the water and are desirable spaces for public recreation. They are also sought after locations for housing and commercial uses like restaurants and retail. Waterfronts must also respond to many pressures and changes such as rapidly evolving economic conditions and increased flood risk.
In Norwalk, our Harbor Plan prioritizes water dependent uses. The current waterfront includes a number of long standing industrial and marine commercial properties that add to Norwalk’s maritime character.
This plan will help Norwalk to take stock of the needs, aspirations and ideas for the future of the city’s waterfront. The result will be a framework for regulations, rezoning recommendations, and projects needed to pursue a healthy, vibrant and dynamic waterfront for Norwalk that balances public access, water-dependent land uses, water quality, and flood resiliency.
What Area Will the Plan Cover?
The above map shows the boundary of the Waterfront Plan area and also highlights the relationship of different parcels to the planning process:
- Study Area (shown in dark blue): will be examined to determine if a change in land use and zoning regulations is appropriate.
- Study Area Parks (shown in green) : public parks within the study area will remain as-is, but are included in the plan because surrounding land uses need to be complementary to them in order to create a positive experience for park users and minimize conflicting objectives.
- Influence Areas (shown in light blue): these lay just outside of the study area boundary and will not be considered for any changes in land use and zoning regulations as part of this plan. They will be analyzed, however, to make sure that any changes proposed within the study area are compatible with the uses and character within these Influence Areas.
Who Is Involved?
The Waterfront Planning Steering Committee is composed of members who have a specific understanding of waterfront business and redevelopment issues.
- Darlene Young, Common Council
- John Kydes, Common Council
- Lou Schulman, Zoning Commission
- Richard Roina, Zoning Commission
- Tammy Langalis, Planning Commission
- Sabrina Church, Economic & Community Development
- Steve Kleppin, Planning & Zoning
- Laura Kenny, Planning & Zoning
- Michelle Andrzejewski, Planning & Zoning
- Steve Bartush, Shellfish Commission
- Carly Kramer, Norwalk Redevelopment Authority
One additional Harbor Management Commission member will be appointed as a representative on the Waterfront Planning Steering Committee.
Stakeholders Engaged Thus Far
- Public Agencies:
- Norwalk Redevelopment Agency
- Habor Watch (+Dick Harris, Water Quality Consultant)
- Maritime Aquarium
- Yankee Gas/Eversource
- City of Norwalk Parks & Rec.
- City of Norwalk Water Pollution Control Agency (WPCA)
- City of Norwalk Public Works Department
- Norwalk Harbor Management Commission
- Shellfish Commission
- Mayor’s Water Quality Committee
- Inner Harbor Heavy Industrial
- King Industry
- Devine Brothers
- O&G Industries
- Oystering & Marine Industry
- Copps Island Oyster & Bloom Family
- Water St. Marine Construction (Blooms & Gary Wetmore)
- Bob Kunkel (Harbor Harvest)
- Rowing Clubs
- Fairfield University Rowing
- Maritime River Rowing
- Norwalk River Rowing
- Connecticut Boat Club
- Marina, Boat Clubs, Boat Dealers & Service
- Total Marine
- Ischoda Yacht Club
- Pastime Athletic Club
- South Norwalk Boat Club
- Oyster Bend Yacht Club and Marina
- Marine Max
- United Marine Boatyard
- Marine Magic
- Rex Marine
- Other Water St. Developers & Property Owners
- Ironworks SoNo/Spinnaker Real Estate Partners
- Eliot Gersten (Property Owner)
- Joseph Najamy (Business & Property Owner)
- Bruce Beuinfeld (Architect)
- David Waldman (Property Owner)
- Bethany Brierly (Property owner representative)
- Gregg Nanni (Property owner representative)
- Leonard DiNardo (Property Owner)
- Bill Gardella (Business and Property Owner)
The City of Norwalk has engaged Utile and Ninigret Partners to serve as the Consultant Team who will work closely with the Steering Committee throughout the planning process.
In addition, the study will be done in coordination with the Norwalk Harbor Management Commission, since the final recommendations are intended to inform future updates to the Harbor Management Plan as well as land-side land use regulations.
Waterfront Land Use Plan Timeline