Monday, June 17, 2024



Westport Receives $85K for Efforts to Reduce Risk, Claims Image
The town and Board of Education (BOE) have been awarded $85,404 for their prorated share of $5 million equity distribution from the Connecticut Interlocal Risk Management Agency (CIRMA). As a not-for-profit association of Connecticut municipalities, school districts, and local public agencies, CIRMA’s mission is to meet the risk financing and risk management needs of its members. The distribution reflects continued efforts by the town and BOE in managing risk through training and injury avoidance under the worker’s compensation program along with actions to reduce claims under its liability, auto and property coverage. Westport has received $525,175 since the program was started in 2011. Pictured (l-r):  Marty Burger (Marsh McLennan Agency), Will Wood, Stephen Nadeau and Ashley Reda (CIRMA representatives), First Selectman Jim Marpe, Gary Conrad, Westport finance director, and Elio Longo, BOE chief financial officer. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Making Progress on New Main Street Structure Image
Work is progressing on 36-42 Main St., former home of Shoe-Inn and Bobby Qs. The building was sold for $9.2 million in November 2014 by the late Drew Friedman, who originally opened Onion Alley in the Bobby Q space. The town has been told the second floor has been leased to noted restaurateur Sasa Mahr-Batuz, co-founder and creative director of Norwalk-based Barteca Restaurant Group, which includes the restaurant concepts Barcelona Wine Bar & Restaurant and bartaco. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) photo

Rhythmn, Blues, and Some News at Levitt Image
Westport resident Shelly Kahan, president and CEO of Greenwich-based Interstate + Lakeland Lumber, told tonight’s Billy and the Showmen Levitt Pavilion audience that he is “thrilled” that his company is taking over the Torno Lumber and Hardware location, 760 Post Road East. “We will be bringing a 97-year-old family business tradition to all of you,” he said. Kahan and Interstate + Lakeland sponsored the rhythm and blues performance and also was a supporter of the capital campaign for the new Levitt Pavilion. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

New Look on Railroad Place Image
There’s a new look on Railroad Place opposite the Metro-North Saugatuck station with the addition of a pop-up cafe at Romanacci Express, 50 Railroad Place.  According to Romanacci host, MacieJ Roginski, the pop-up cafe permit was issued for the July 31 to Nov. 1 period. He said this is the first Romanacci location with a full bar, so now patrons can have drinks outside as well as dine off the menu. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Comings & Goings: Catherine H. to Main Street Image
Catherine H., a women’s apparel boutique, has opened on the second floor at 142 Main St., adjacent to Tavern on Main restaurant. According to French-born owner Catherine Hiriart, “I always loved Westport ever since I was associated with Henry Lehr decades ago. The town is a destination with so much charm, it’s perfect for boutiques and always was that way.”  Hiriart’s longtime friend and staff member, Colleen Hawkins (above), describes the Catherine H. offerings as “casual chic apparel that is comfortable and stylish.” The Catherine H. space was formerly occupied by The Brownstone, which closed in February after 12 years on Main Street and three years in that location. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Comings & Goings: Millie Rae’s Relocates Image
Millie Rae’s, the 10-year old store for “home, girl and garden” at 1799 Post Road East, closes on Saturday, Aug. 17 and reopens on Monday, Aug. 26 at 1011 Post Road East, the space formerly occupied by Country Curtains, according to owner Cheryl Sugel, a Westport resident. Sugel, who describes her business as “a lifestyle store for women,” said her lease expired and her need to expand her 2,400-square foot store was satisfied when she learned of the availability of the 3,200-square foot space.Reminiscing about the success of the women’s-oriented businesses, she added, “I named the shop after my inspirational maternal and paternal grandmothers, Millie and Rachel.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Owner Still Plans to Convert Rehab Complex into Hotel

Plans to convert the Westport Rehabilitation Complex on Burr Road and Post Road East into a 50-room hotel are still active, the attorney for 1 Burr Road LLC said today. Image
An early rendering of The Westport Hotel. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed graphic

Leonard Braman’s comments came in response to a Westport News story that the rehabilitation complex would remain open. Braman, who met for a pre application hearing with the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) on June 6, said the owner is moving ahead with plans for The Westport Hotel.

“We are still working on the project,” said Braman. “At this time, we’re taking into consideration the input we received at the preapp meeting with the P&Z and other ideas based on community outreach.

“We’re talking to all the sources we can,” he added. “We got helpful feedback from the Planning and Zoning Commission, and we’re still in the process.”

Comings & Goings: Lovesac to Post Road East Image
Lovesac, a furniture retailer, specializing in a “designed for life” patented modular furniture system called “sactionals” will open a showroom at 68 Post Road East in the space previously occupied by Max’s Art Supplies, adjacent to Restoration Hardware. Headquartered in Stamford, Lovesac has showrooms in 32 states and, in addition to its Connecticut presence in the 2,500-square foot space in Westport, LoveSac showrooms will open soon in Greenwich and West Hartford. The Danbury Mall is its only currently operating showroom in the state. Max’s, a Westport mainstay, was an unofficial headquarters for Westport artists since it opened in 1956 until it closed in 2014. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Second to Last Day for Tax Payments Without Penalty Image
UPDATE and CORRECT Westport residents line up today at the Tax Collector office in Town Hall for the second to last day payment of first fiscal quarter real estate tax. Although the quarterly tax payment is due on July 1, residents may pay by Aug. 1 without incurring a penalty fee. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for