WestCOG's Monthly Newsletter
Western Connecticut
Council of Governments
Welcome to the WestCOG monthly newsletter. It's a great place to find updates and opportunities in the region. You can also get information in real time by following us on Twitter or liking our Facebook page.

Project Updates


Planimetric Data Available: WestCOG is proud to announce that a complete data set of GIS high resolution imagery, 1ft contour topography, and planimetric features including roads, buildings, tree lines, sidewalks, etc. is now available to the public and interested organizations for the southern 8 towns. The integrated data set will be very helpful for potential transportation, 3-D modeling, and other projects. Please contact Carl Zimmerman, Senior GIS Manager, at for more information on this data and for assistance utilizing it in your community.

Upcoming Events

WestCOG Board & MPO Meetings
April 21, 11:30am
Ridgefield Library

Drug Task Force Meeting
April 28, 9:45am
Wilton Teen Center

Tentative TAG Meeting
May 3, 10am

WestCOG Board & MPO Meetings
May 19, 11:30am
Ridgefield Library

For more, visit the WestCOG Calendar

LOTCIP Consultants Selected: WestCOG has entered into agreements with AECOM and CHA to support the LOTCIP program. The two consultants will perform engineering design review of LOTCIP projects as well as assist with management of the LOTCIP program. WestCOG has also selected several consultants to assist municipalities with the construction administration/inspection aspects of LOTCIP projects. These consultants are available on-call for municipalities in the region.

Southern Regional HMP Update Completed:​ All of the southern 8 communities have adopted the Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) update. A future schedule for plan maintenance will come out this month.

Imagery for 10 Towns: GIS staff reviewed and conducted a quality control and quality assessment of the imagery and topographic tiles for the 10 northern towns in anticipation of data delivery in the second quarter of 2016.

WestCOG Lectured at UConn Stamford: Executive Director, Francis Pickering, led a topical discussion on Transportation challenges for Professor Williams's Introduction to Urban & Community Studies at UConn Stamford.

WestCOG Presented at Still River Partners Meeting: Senior GIS Manager, Carl Zimmerman, demonstrated new, high resolution GIS data, and its applications in different watershed-related analyses such as impervious cover and small-scale drainage modeling at the Housatonic Valley Association's Still River Partners Meeting.

Land Use Commissioner Trainings: UConn CLEAR has decided to take the Land Use Academy Basic Training on the road to make it easier for land use commissioners to attend. WestCOG will be helping towns organize joint classes for the Land Use Academy Training and CT NEMO Workshops. Please contact Liz at for more information.

EPA Presented on Nitrogen in Stamford: On April 13th, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency hosted a public meeting on their strategy to reduce nitrogen pollution in Long Island Sound.

Drug Task Force: WestCOG hosted a Drug Task Force meeting on March 31. Participants heard a presentation from the New England High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area on their Heroin Response Strategy. The presentation and minutes from the meeting can be found on the WestCOG site. The next meeting will be April 28 at 9:45am at the Wilton Trackside Teen Center.

Quarterly Planners' Lunch: On March 14, municipal Planners and Land Use Officials, Economic Development Directors, and members of the Technical Advisory Group heard a presentation on Tax Increment Financing by the CT Main Street Center and saw a demonstration of t-HUB software given by the UConn School of Engineering. The next lunch will be in June with a focus on planning for an aging population.

Agenda for the Upcoming COG Meeting: Available here.
Agenda for the Upcoming MPO Meetings: SWRMPO Available here. HVMPO Available here.

Grant Opportunities

  • The National Recreation and Park Association opened the Great Urban Parks Campaign grant application. Its purpose is to demonstrate the effectiveness of green infrastructure to positively affect environmental change in under-served, low-income communities and communities of color, thereby increasing community engagement, connection to nature, and physical activity by community residents. Applications are due by midnight April 29, 2016. Applicants will be notified whether or not they were selected for a grant by June 30, 2016.

  • USDOT announced the highly competitive TIGER grant program, supporting innovative projects, including multi-modal and multi-jurisdictional projects, which are difficult to fund through traditional federal programs. Applications are due April 29, 2016.

  • CTDOT opened the application period for the Section 5310 - Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities grant program
    using Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2015 funding. Applications are due by 4pm on Friday, April 29, 2016.

  • DEEP is pleased to announce that additional funding is now available to reimburse municipalities and state agencies for fleet electric vehicle (EV) purchases and/or workplace charger installation. DEEP will provide a reimbursement of up to $15,000 per EV and up to $10,000 per charger meeting the program guidance specifications, to a maximum of six EVs and chargers per grant recipient. The closing date for applications is May 4, 2016 at 5:00 pm.

Staff Profile: Michael Sullivan

As a GIS Analyst, Michael contributes to the development and implementation of regional transportation studies and other geospatial projects. His professional interests include transportation planning, public health, database management, data visualization, geostatistics. Prior to joining WestCOG, he worked in GIS roles at public agencies ranging from New York City’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications to the United Nation’s Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea. Michael has a M.S. in Geographic Information Science from CUNY Lehman College, and a B.A. in Geography and B.S. in Economics from SUNY Binghamton University.
Michael's interests include cycling, soccer, and baking. He is currently researching the history of the Brooklyn Irish with his father. Michael recently joined Connecticut non-profit Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities as an Associate Board Member.

Regional News & Events

CTDEEP and the CT Greenways Council are soliciting nominations for official greenway designations. Designated greenways, both for recreation and resource protection, will be listed in a subsequent revision of the State Plan of Conservation and Development and may receive increased consideration for a variety of grants. There are currently 75 designated greenways in CT.  The deadline for the submission of the nomination form is April 29, 2016.

DECD will be hosting their very first statewide CT Brownfield Conference on May 17, 2016 in Hartford. This conference will provide the opportunity for developers, site owners, municipal leaders, attorneys, and environmental professionals to learn more about brownfields and the resources the state has to assist with cleaning up these sites. This event is free, but you must register by April 29, 2016. 

"Using Smartphone GPS for Monitoring and Mapping Land Trust Holdings" Workshop is being held in New Canaan‬ on April 29, 2016.

April 30th is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Contact your Local Prevention Council or Regional Action Council for details.

The Stamford Bus and Shuttle Study released a new video highlighting shuttle operational issues.

CTDOT launched a website where they will post updates on the reconstruction of Atlantic Street and the Metro-North Railroad bridge replacement.

CERC and CEDAS are booking future dates for their free Municipal Economic Development Training, which is custom tailored to specific town(s) and designed to help those who impact economic development to work more collaboratively together. Contact Courtney Hendricson with questions and to schedule a training.

UConn CLEAR has decided to take the Land Use Academy Basic Training on the road to make it easier for land use commissioners to attend. WestCOG will be helping towns organize these free joint classes for the Land Use Academy Training and CT NEMO workshops. Please contact Liz at for more information.

UConn CLEAR has created an interactive "story map" taking an inventory of Low Impact Development Policies in towns across the state. It is a great resource for sample policies on conservation, storm water, rain garden, etc. Towns not yet highlighted in the report can also submit their policies to CLEAR to be included.

Do you have news or events you would like to share with the rest of the region? Send your updates to Liz at

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