NORWALK, Conn. – The Manresa Association has taken a big step toward finding a new use for the dormant NRG power plant that looms over Norwalk Harbor — but it needs a bit more money.
The community organization has raised over half of the funds needed to co-fund a $150,000 economic impact analysis of the property. Mayor Harry Rilling has agreed to provide matching funds from the City of Norwalk.
“The metrics provided by the economic impact analysis will be used to apprise the public and city officials of the financial, social and economic implications of the various possible uses for this landmark property,” Mayor Rilling said.
Charlie Taney, president of the Manresa Association, is leading the fundraising effort.
"The Economic Impact Analysis is a critical first step in determining the future of the 125 acre Manresa property, that sits directly on Long Island Sound. This study will provide an objective analysis that will enable Norwalk leaders to make an informed decision on a range of potential options for the property,” Taney said.
According to Taney, the fund-raising effort received an early and positive response from a group of Wilson Avenue businesses known as The Curve.
The group consists of LaJoie's, LeBlanc’s, FGB Construction, Baywater Properties, Seaman Construction, Grasso Construction, FGB Construction and F&G Construction. Collectively, The Curve contributed over $13,500 to the campaign. The leader of The Curve is Jim Murphy, general manager of LaJoie's.
“We felt it was important for the South Norwalk business community to show its support for the Manresa Association, which is has only one objective: to ensure a future for the huge NRG property that is environmentally safe and contributes to the quality of life in Norwalk,” Murphy said.
Over 900 households are represented on the Manresa Association. Taney said he is optimistic that area residents will contribute the balance needed to reach the $75,000 goal before the end of the year, so the study can begin in early 2017.
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