Bristol Rising Champion Andy Adams blogs about the power of coming together as a community, and the successes it can provide downtown Bristol.
“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” This quote by Henry Ford reminds me of members of the Bristol Rising community who have come together volunteering their time, ideas and energy to help make downtown Bristol a destination. The momentum continues with the revitalization. Even though shovels haven’t broke ground, Bristol Rising members are not waiting to bring people together.
The Pop Up Piazzas (Aug 2011 & 2012) proved successful and brought together thousands of people to experience what life would be like in the downtown piazza. A movie night (Sept 2011), Bare Bones grand opening (Oct 2011), Bristol Billiards Grand Opening (Dec 2011), Children’s Holiday Parade (Dec 2011), Pioneer Happy Hour (March 2012), Cash Mob at Mike’s Tortoise & Hare (April 2012), grand opening of Bristol Market Place (Aug 2012), grand opening of Barley Vine (Oct 2012) and the Ingraham House concerts are some of the events that are bringing people downtown.
Soon, on a monthly basis, Rising Mobs will consistently bring people downtown supporting the local businesses who are listening to what their clientele want to see as an event. The heart and soul of our downtown is becoming vibrant with each event and activity that is held. Bristol Rising members are leading the charge to show investors Bristol is the place to open up shop. Continue to support in any way that you can! Bristol is an undiscovered gem that is becoming a more vibrant destination.
Bristol Rising members came together in the beginning back in November 2010. They kept together throughout the process and made progress. They worked together towards the goal of bringing vibrancy to Bristol’s downtown. Change is happening right before our eyes.That’s something to be proud of!
Name: Andy Adams
Kudos to the Bristol Rising Team who worked at the Home Show this past weekend. Victor & Mark on Friday, Kaye, C.C. Aka Charles Cyr, & Michele Boyko & Mark on Saturday—41 completed responses and Jess Adams Pike, Gina, Joanne & Fred, Robin & myself kicked butt and reached out to the people who passed by the booth and got 43 more responses for a total of 84 this weekend! Bring on the Chili Cook Off, Shamrock Run, Bristol Pioneers Open House!
It was a great effort to reach those people who attended. We had an opportunity to explain the Downtown Living Campaign in detail. People still had misconceptions about the whole revitalization and the concept plan, some of which we were able to explain in detail:
1. Why mixed use development which includes office, retail, restaurants and living space is so important and successful.
2. This concept is being done all over the country in developing downtowns but Renaissance is the only developer using ‘crowdsourcing’. They are actually asking Bristol residents what they want and will support. They are not just building what they want to build then pick up and leave.
3. Explaining about Bristol Rising’s website and encouraging them to get involved and having a voice by registering so they have a way to be kept informed of updates in a timely manner.
4. Enthusiasm by Bristol Risers was felt by those who stopped by and many were surprised that we believed in the project so much that we volunteered our time and were not getting paid.
5. We gave people something to think about and even though we had those who were apprehensive about the whole plan, they said they would visit the website and read more about it.
6. Exposure! Exposure! Exposure! Having a presence at community events is winning people over each and every time.
Name: Andy Adams
For those of you who couldn’t make it to the Bare Bones Grand Opening on Thursday, Oct 27th you missed an awesome time! The place was wall to wall people standing room only with the sofas and chairs filled with people too! Wine was flowing, Fair Trade coffee and Pour Me tea was piping hot and hit the spot! Refreshments from Super Natural and Razzleberries were delish! The most amazing part was watching people talk, laugh listen to the live music and enjoy themselves at the new hip hang out on Main Street. Lindsay, Robin and Michelle did an awesome job and made the dream become a reality! They had a lot of volunteers who lended a helping hand which made it all come together last night! There’s a place in Bristol we can now go to and visit with a friend, read a book, enjoy a cup of tea or coffee, watch an artist create live art, just sit and daydream, participate in one of the many classes, activities and events that will be held at Bare Bones or host a meeting in a comfortable setting. Downtown Bristol is very fortunate to have Bare Bones. What is normally a dull and quiet evening on Main Street on a Thursday evening became a lively and busy place where Bare Bones breathed life into downtown Bristol. People were coming and going on evening! The comments were nothing but positive. So, when you have the opportunity, stop by Bare Bones and experience it yourself! You’ll be happy you did!
Name: Andy Adams
Our journey towards a revitalized downtown is beginning to pick up speed! The last week and a half has been very exciting with BDDC and the City Council voting for Renaissance Downtowns concept plan. Since August, Bristol Rising hosted the Pop Up Piazza, worked on the Summer Street clean up, supported the Bare Bones 5K, hosted Back to the Future on the big screen on Main and Riverside, walked in the Mum parade, rallied at the BDDC and Cuty COuncil meetings and celebrated at the Bare Bones on the day of their soft opening. Whew! What a ride! We got more people at the Pop Up Piazza and the Mum Parade to sign up and vote for ideas posted on the site. Slowly we are getting more people involved in Bristol Rising. I believe once there is more activity beginning to happen on the mall site, interest and activity with regards to Bristol Rising will increase. How could it not!
Name: Andy Adams
The Bare Bones 5K was held on Saturday, Sept 10th at 9 am. There were over 80 people who chose to participate in the Run/Walk. There were even a couple of people jogging pushing baby strollers! It was a great success with many participants stopping by on Friday evening to pre-register, get their Bare Bones t-shirt and get a sneak peek of Bare Bones! Several people were walking by and stopped to look in so we invited them in of course to take the opportunity to promote Bare Bones, the 5K and the whole Bristol Rising/crowdsourcing idea!
Kudos to Charlie Cyr whose idea of the 5K and tying it with the Bare Bones came to fruition. Charlie organized the event and did one heck of a job! Thanks to Robin Messerli, Michelle St. Pierre and Lindsay Vigue for all their hard work in making Bare Bones a reality! The excitement of the space was felt throughout Friday evening and Saturday morning as people learned what Bare Bones was all about. There was even a passerby who invited Lindsay to a game of chess on Friday evening!
Thanks to all the participants of the Run/Walk the volunteers and the sponsors because if it wasn’t for you, there would not have been an event nor a successful one at that!
For those who missed getting a sneak peek of Bare Bones, watch for the Grand Opening date. You’re in for a real treat!
Please take a minute if you see Charlie Cyr, Lindsay, Robin or Michelle and give them a high five! They deserve it. Thanks gang! Keep up the good work!
P.S. Visit BristolCT.net Ron Tessman took 236 photos. You can find them under “Current Slide Show” Bare Bones Cafe Run.
Name: Andy Adams
Tomorrow is Sept 1st and the count down begins towards Sept 20th and the Fab Five. The following ideas below already have entrepreneurs. Please cast your vote to support them!
Lindsay, Robin and Michelle are working hard to get Bare Bones open in Sept, Mike and Jesse are doing a bang up job hosting concerts every month with food, drink and entertainment for only $15(a real bargain!) at the Ingraham House(Intimate Live Music Venue), Victor and Terri are in the beginning planning stages of the Craft Ale House/Wine Bar( craft beer and wine tastings, yea!), John is moving to open a Coworking Space (would be a great networking spot too) and Ryan has had contact about the Dinner & Drinks Movie Theater(how neat is that!)
Support is needed by clicking on the “thumbs up” icon under each idea. How hard is that? With the number of members on the Bristol Rising and the survey site, this should be no problem to get to 300 Likes! Please reach out to your family and friends. We have the opportunity to transform downtown into a hopping and lively destination. But, it starts with us showing we want change. Aren’t you tired of looking at that big empty lot? Well let’s start clicking! Vote! Vote! Vote! The Fab Five is listed at the top of the survey site. We have people in this community who believe in the project and are willing to start a business. Please take the opportunity to show them that you believe in the project and their idea. Thanks!
Name: Andy Adams
Be proud Bristol Rising members! See article below!
Monday, August 15, 2011 12:32 AM EDT
By Mike Nicastro
If you were one of the multitude of residents and visitors who participated in the Pop-up Piazza sponsored by Bristol Rising on Aug. 6 then you know firsthand just what an unmitigated success it was for Bristol.
This event was a crucial first step and potentially a catalyst for the goal of reclaiming the city center.
The event validated some of the fundamental concepts that form the basis of the initial plan developed by Renaissance Downtowns. At the same time it also created more questions that will need to be considered for the ultimate success of the project. It also brought together every constituency that lives and/or works in the city and the surrounding area.
On the validation side, one thing was clear. The Gen Y’s (those born in 1985 or later) are not only the primary target demographic but they fully appreciate and in many ways expect this form of entertainment intertwined with an urban area. For the most part many of them now have experienced it firsthand.
Most of our Gen Y population that has gone on to college has done so in cities like New Haven, Springfield, Boston, Worcester and others. Urban festivals that include food, crafts and other vendor booths are very much the norm. Pedestrian-based living is what they have become accustomed to and Gen Y’s not only like it they will demand it.
This will mean more bad news for the consumer real estate market (especially those homes built during the height of urban sprawl) as the data shows that Gen Ys are simply not interested.
On the other hand they are interested in a place where they can live, work and play all within a much smaller radius and with a strong pedestrian component.
Bristol’s Gen Y’s got a taste of it on Aug. 6 and frankly the only shock to them was that what was transpiring was indeed in Bristol. The event passed their test.
On the other end of the spectrum the “War Years” (pre-1945) and early “Baby Boomer” (1945-55) generations were much more nostalgic. Many of them stopped by the Chamber booth and shared their thoughts and remembrances. They asked many questions as well.
It was easy to see a glimmer of hope in their eyes that what once was could be again.
For many of them the memories were palpable. They enjoyed the new look and restoration on the east side of Main Street and at the same time while the Gen Ys saw a street festival they could still see the old west side of Main Street with North Main starting just beneath the rail bridge.
To steal James Earl Jones’ line from “Field of Dreams,” “The memories were so thick they had to brush them away from their faces.”
In the middle are the later “Baby Boomers” (1955-65) and the Gen X’s born after 1965.
This is the hardest bunch of all to convince that things can and must change for the city to remain viable. This is the group that fell in love with urban sprawl, turned up its nose at public transportation and in many ways became the purveyors of the throw-away society.
This group also defines high density housing and pedestrian based environments as being “Section 8” in the making.
Maybe they should visit cities like Detroit where it is far safer to live among the high rises of the city than it is to try and survive in the decaying suburbs filled with dilapidated capes and ranches that have long since seen their prime.
Late Boomers and Gen X’s also see nothing as permanent. To this group a building like City Hall, which is a newborn compared with the city halls in European cities, should be taken down and rebuilt on the former Mall property. They would argue that this would be the best use of the land. Maybe, but then what?
In order to secure this demographic we will first need to prove that any project will not become Section 8 housing but will in fact attract the Gen Y’s and Gen Z’s who will follow. As demand for this form of housing increases and the value of their suburban homes continue to fall the lesson may be learned.
The one big question that the Pop-up Piazza did generate is “what’s next?” A very good and important question.
Shovels are not ready to go into the ground and there is still a good bit of marketing yet to be done. The downside from the success of the event is the potential to lose momentum, whether perceived or real.
Recognizing that it would be difficult for the immense work done by the Bristol Rising volunteers to be replicated again so soon there are a few things that can keep the juices flowing.
First and foremost, finish the night by rescheduling the movie ASAP. In addition, we would encourage Bristol Rising to engage with the Mum Festival on its 50th anniversary edition. The Chamber’s Children’s Holiday Parade (the parade in reverse) is another opportunity to use Main Street and work in a street festival atmosphere.
Even more importantly will be the success of the Bare Bones Café. This simple and eclectic coffee house can be a continued draw for the Gen Y’s of Bristol and surrounding communities. Despite its small and simple concept, Bare Bones, if successful, can sow more positive activity on Main Street. Activity that potential investors will be looking to see happen before they invest.
So once again our hearty congratulations to the Bristol Rising team for a job well done. We’d also like to say thank you to Ann Nyberg of WTNH Channel 8 for hanging with us all day.
Lastly, big kudos to the city and police for maintaining a great presence during the event and for a quick and thorough cleanup. If nothing else we proved that as a community we can come together and make things happen.
Michael D. Nicastro is president and CEO of the Central Connecticut Chambers of Commerce. M.Nicastro@CentralCTChambers.org
Name: Andy Adams
Mark your calendars for Bristol’s Biggest Block Party on Saturday, August, 6th on Main St and the old mall site! Renaissance and Bristol Rising members have been working very hard planning this festival. 50+ orange and black circular signs have been posted all over town to advertise to passerbys as they drive to their destinations. Several thousand flyers have been distributed to businesses all over town as well as to shoppers at both Stop & Shops, Wal Mart, Price Chopper and Shop-RIte.
Over 60 food and craft vendors, games, activties, live music (bands), vintage cars, entertainment, muralists, live art, beer garden, dancing and a free movie on a 40 ft inflatable screen are in place to make the day spectacular! Over 400 people have already RSVPd for the event.
Tell your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers! Stop by and join the festivities! Meet some of our entrepreneurs and ask them questions or give them ideas and feedback on their business venture. Jesse Gallagher will be there to talk about the Ingraham House (Intimate Live Music Venue), Robin Messerli is waiting to talk to you about the Bare Bones, Scott Lombard wants to hear your thoughts on Bristol Billiards and Victor Lugo is looking for 300 “Likes” so he can host a beer tasting!
Downtown Bristol’s transformation is beginning to take place. Be a part of it! Come celebrate, have some fun, enjoy the festivities and show your support! Let’s breathe some life back into this town! It’s Pop Up Piazza Festival on Main Street!
Hope to see you there!
Name: Andy Adams
We had another Bristol Rising meetup at Giamatti last evening and members of the Bristol Rising community gathered to hear updates on downtown. Ryan brought us up to date and touched upon the Pop Up Piazza event taking place in August. Housing was the main topic of discussion and its impact it will have on downtown’s revitalization as well as how to go about crowd sourcing the idea. Bristol Rising members enthusiastically contributed opinions and ideas as Mark captured each and every one on video.
Bare Bones Fluid Store Front Space had a historical moment when the lease was signed last evening by the Historical Society at their monthly meeting. And a local resident of Bristol gave us an update on the Ale House that he is interested in opening on Main Street. Soon Main Street will be bustling with activity. Bristol Rising members are waiting with bated breath for the shovels to hit the dirt.
I encourage you to attend a meet up or read the email blasts sent by Bristol Rising informing you of updates and requesting you to vote or campaign others to vote on an idea. There are interested parties out there waiting to see what the crowd wants and they are ready to deliver when we show them support.
This is an exciting time and it’s great to see the participation grow. These dedicated members of the Bristol Rising community are volunteering their time and energy to this cause which only validates the spirit held in so many members hearts.
Keep a watchful eye. There’s alot going on!
Name: Andy Adams
About 17 or 18 Bristol Rising members gathered around 11am for the Forestville Memorial Day Parade. As we waited for the parade to begin we chatted about the progress on the website along with the new ideas being posted. We were also discussing our strategy about passing out fliers, carrying the banner and showcasing the newly created signs. You could feel the excitement among the members! We were walking the parade route wearing orange Bristol Rising t-shirts. We were encouraging area residents that by joining BristolRising.com they have a voice and can make a difference.
Mark W. created a flyer and printed about 400 that we passed out along the parade route. He also had signs made that Bristol Rising members carried with pride.
We chanted “Bristol Rising” (clap, clap, clap) “Bristol Rising” (clap, clap, clap) as we walked along the last stretch of the parade. People waved and cheered us on as we walked by. We encouraged parade onlookers to join BristolRising and have a voice and make a difference. People smiled and nodded while some others said “Okay, I will. Thanks.”
We’re hoping that we get a good increase in membership from exposure in the parade. If anything, we showed residents that we care enough about our city and the revitalization of our downtown to take time out of our holiday weekend and march in the parade in 90 degree heat! Now that’s support and dedication. Thanks to all who came out to support BristolRising! You did this because you care and YOU made a DIFFERENCE by participating and allowing BristolRising to have a presence at this event.
Name: Andy Adams
The initial stage of planning this wonderful event has begun! Mark will be sending out details soon. We need people to help make this a success! Here’s an opportunity for the Bristol Rising members to partner with Renaissance and local businesses to host an event on the future ground of Bristol’s own Piazza!! Please consider giving a little of your time. Remember a little goes a long way–strength in numbers–many hands make light work.Join us and have some fun! Let’s breathe life back into Bristol! Are you with me?!
Name: Andy Adams
I’m looking for help to organize a Bristol Rising group that would march in the Forestville parade. This is an opportunity for members of Bristol Rising to reach a large number of residents. If it’s a nice day, the streets are crowded with adults and children before they go off to their cookouts.
Interested? Please let me or Mark know. Let’s strategize on posters, banners, one page handout etc.
The parade starts at noon and we usually are required to line up around 11. It lasts 45 min.
Name: Andy Adams
As I walked into City Hall to attend last evening’s presentation of the concept plan by Renaissance, I had several people ask me why I was wearing a t-shirt with Bristol Rising printed on the front and what did it mean. Well, being enthusiastic about the project and the opportunity that Renaissance has given the people of Bristol to be a part of this project, I couldn’t wait to tell them! These people are not members yet and I’m hoping after I talked with them and they saw the awesome presentation by Ryan that they will go home and join us! They thought the concept of crowdsourcing and the BristolRising and survey sites were very interesting. As I turned around to look at them during Ryan’s presentation they nodded and smiled. One woman gave me a thumbs up! I think they are on board!
So wearing our bright orange shirts with pride has piqued interest and have people wondering what is this all about. There was a group of us who came in with our shirts and there were many who left with them after the presentation. I agree with Mike Seery’s comment that was posted on his blog this morning. “It’s tough for the skeptic not to come out with something but this has a better chance at becoming a reality if we all stay positive. Go Bristol!” Nicely said Mike!
I can’t wait to put the shovel in the ground as many of us expressed this sentiment after the meeting. The naysayers will continue to be among us and post their negative comments on the Bristol Press’s blog. I say don’t bother wasting time reading them and responding. Let’s devote our time and energy to making this project a success!
As a bumper sticker was passed around last night stated, ” I believe in Bristol!”
Name: Andy Adams
Now’s the time to shine! Let’s support Ryan and the Renaissance team by attending the Presentation of the Concept Plan on Thursday Night–7pm at City Hall! Only 36 members have RSVP’d out of almost 600. It’s an opportunity to see what the future of Bristol’s downtown may become. Restaurants, shops, festivals, activities, entertainment, art, social gatherings, more upscale housing….businesses that we can support which in turn will bring people to our town to live and or spend their dollar, keep people in town to spend their money and bring in more tax dollars. That’s just the beginning!
We have the chance to show our leaders that we care about Bristol and its future. Please make it a point if you’re free that evening and help us make a statement that Bristol and its residents want to see it happen!
Name: Andy Adams
Visualize a piazza, an open public square surrounded by buildings with shops, offices, restaurants and cafes. Maybe a fountain in the middle with a man-made river that dumps into a pond with goldfish. Benches, tables with umbrellas and chairs scattered around. Sit and relax with an iced tea and read a book or listen to music on your Ipod or maybe watch people passing by on their way to work or to grab a bite to eat. Stop at the microbrewery for Happy Hour after work or meet friends on a Friday or Saturday evening to enjoy a beer with an appetizer and/or sandwich. Pop in the bookstore cafe and browse or use the free wireless and grab a pastry, mini cheesecake, or cupcake at the bakery along with a cup of coffee, cappuccino or latte and sit outside with a friend, spouse or family member and enjoy each other’s company. Catch up on the going ons in Bristol then stroll into Bristol’s own art or sports museum. Shop for fresh produce at the Farmer’s market during spring, summer and fall months. Street performers including local Bristolites, can break dance, juggIe, perform magic tricks or play the saxophone to entertain the crowd that gathers. In the winter, the piazza can be transformed into an ice skating rink similar to Rockefeller Center. Watch adults, teens and children skate on the rink and later enjoy hot chocolate. A winter festival is not out of the question. Schmidt’s in Pennsylvania has a Winter Jam with a band. A tree lighting during the holiday season with the traditional Carole sing at Webster’s Bank is a wonderful family event that can be a tradition that continues.
Want something to do with the kids? How about painting some pottery in the Pottery Shop then letting the kids pick out their favorite cookie at the bakery. Adults that want to enjoy the nightlife…how about a wine bar with entertainment or maybe a concert at the Live Music Venue.
It doesn’t stop there either!! Many events and activities can take place year round…Art Festival, Ethnic Festival, Wine Festival, Pet Festival, Taste of Bristol, Craft Fair, Summer Concerts, Ice Skating Show, Outdoor Movie Night, Sports Event shown on the Jumbotron, SummerFest, Flea Market, Farmer’s Market, Talent Show, etc The events and activites are endless!!
Want a little exercise? No worry about traffic as you walk along the walkways or man made river. Of course now you deserve an ice cream at the Ice Cream Churn after that walk. Catch a show at the Performing Arts center on the Boulevard. The school has the opportunity to be transformed into our own Warner Theater, Seven Angels Theater, Waterbury Palace. Walk to Brackett Park in the summer and let the kids play on the swings or watch them play a pick up game of basketball.
Bristol is so lucky to have so many wonderful people who live and work in town. Now we’re given the opportunity to be part of downtown becoming alive again as it was in the late 60s and early 70s. Please join the movement!!
Name: Andy Adams
I found this while searching about piazzas and plazas. See Below:
Why is it even important?
The words plaza and piazza have the same Greek origin, with plaza being the Spanish adaption and piazza the Italian one. However, the U.S. has adopted the Spanish ‘plaza’ to define its urban public squares, which have pretty much become auto-oriented models. For instance, the New Urbanism Lexicon, the de facto dictionary for progressive urban planning, defines a plaza as:
A public space at the intersection of important streets set aside for civic purposes and commercial activities. A plaza is circumscribed by frontages; its landscape consists of durable pavement for parking and trees requiring little maintenance. All parking lots on frontages should be designed as plazas with the paving not marked or detailed as parking lots.
That’s three references to parking in one definition. It’s no wonder the term shopping plaza doesn’t elicit elegant examples of memorable placemaking.
The definition of a piazza however, still retains its definition as an open public square, especially in Italian towns, surrounded by buildings, and usually the center of public life. In other words, it’s still defined by its historic heritage as a pedestrian-only destination, designed to be the heart of a neighborhood or town, filled with cafes, restaurants and bars and host to a series of local events and public markets. See a more detailed description in “What emerging generations really want: A piazza… 2011“.
There is only one piazza in the U.S., and it just opened in 2009: The Piazza in Philadelphia. It has quickly become the beloved center of the neighborhood. A second is being crowdsourced in Bristol, Connecticut.
So, how does one technically distinguish a piazza from a plaza? For that we turn to Moule & Polyzoides, where you’d be hard pressed to find an urban design firm in the U.S. that is more knowledgeable about piazzas and plazas. It shouldn’t be a surprise that co-founder Stefanos Polyzoides is from Greece, the birthplace of the agora and precursor to forum, then the piazza. Based on their criteria, here’s how to tell a piazza (which they refer to as a Mediterranean plaza) from an Americanized plaza:
1. Strong Enclosure – Piazzas feel like being in human-scaled outdoor rooms; very large courtyards, not like the aforementioned parking, cars and sometimes skyscrapers that are associated with plazas.
2. Wall Continuity – Piazzas are almost always surrounded on all sides by buildings with pedestrian-sized passageways, as opposed to the minimum two-lane traffic-filled streets that break up the sense of place in plazas.
3. Continuous Accessible Ground Floor – Piazzas are true to their Greek origin, acting as open stages by nature, deemphasizing landscaping features other than its floor. Plazas are often completely filled by fountains, monuments and other over-designed landscaping elements (see Georgetown Waterfront in Washington DC where the entire plaza is a fountain).
4. Open to Multiple Use/Non-Specific Design – The buildings on piazzas are designed to be timeless, so that as the economy and culture changes, so do the uses in the building… seamlessly. For some reason, many plazas seem to insist on featuring large buildings that are easily dated.
5. Temporariness vs. Permanence – As with a stage, the blank slate that is a piazza leaves the imagination to whoever is planning an event in it that day, unlike many plazas that are designed for specific experiences, from a fountain show to a landscaped viewing garden to picnic areas… which are fine for a park.
6. Day and Night – A piazza is in full use day and night by the locals – it can be a playground in the morning, welcome a concert in the afternoon, be a dining scene in the evening, and host a movie later that night. Plazas commonly have dead zones during certain times of the day if it’s not positioned as a major tourist attraction.
7. Design of the Threshold between Public and Private Spaces This is a big one. Piazzas emphasize the private lingering spaces within it, from an outdoor dining area to a local coffeehouse or pub on the corner, it’s a third place filled with third places. Plazas tend to feature more corporate or large public venues.
8. Cars Matter at Times – Piazzas can accommodate vehicles when necessary, such as when needed for special events and loading/unloading, versus plazas where accommodating cars is necessary, period. There are no roads bordering any side of a piazza as you’ll find with just about all plazas. You could say that the historic piazzas that have been transformed into parking lots are now plazas rather than piazzas.
9. People-Watching as Sport – As a stage, there is always a spontaneous human activity show going on. In other words, life is never dull in a piazza. While people may enjoy people watching in a plaza, it’s definitely a sport in a piazza.
10. The Heart of the Neighborhood – This is what makes a piazza a piazza. Just ask anyone who lives near one, they couldn’t imagine not having one.
About Neil Takemoto
Neil Takemoto is the founder and CEO of Cooltown Beta Communities. His work over the last 17 years has been committed to the crowdsourced development of places with significant economic, environmental and social benefit, including a 17-acre transit oriented development in Bristol, Connecticut, a car-free neighborhood near Columbia, South Carolina, and a neighborhood cafe in Washington DC. Neil is the founder of Cooltown Studios, a ‘crowdsourcing cool places for creatives’ blog/news site that attracts 50,000 unique visitors a month. It has been featured in Architect Magazine and the Urban Land Institute. He is also the cofounder of Bubbly, a crowdsourcing web application. With Andres Duany, Neil co-founded the National Town Builders Association in 1997, the only business trade group of Smart Growth/New Urbanism real estate developers. Prior to that, he founded a national nonprofit educational clearinghouse for the New Urbanism field.
Name: Andy Adams
It was a wonderful meet up last night at Nuchies. About 45+ people ranging from 20 yrs old and up. All age groups were represented. Everyone rolled up their sleeves and jumped right in. The enthusiasm filled the room with all of us sharing our thoughts and a lot of ideas. Events and ideas will be posted so stay tuned. We need you to add your input and vote!
Name: Andy Adams
Bristol Press article states:
Expo success reflects recovering economy
Sunday, February 27, 2011 10:30 PM EST
By BRYAN KOENIG
BRISTOL — Hundreds filed through Bristol Eastern High School Sunday for the last day of the 26th annual Bristol Home and Business Expo. The expo started Friday. See full article below.
Several BristolRising members along with Mark worked the booth on Saturday at the Home Show. Many people stopped by to learn about the project. They asked questions and gave us ideas. We encouraged them to atttend the Pasta Dinner on Thursday. Flyers with the Pasta dinner info were available and given out. We felt that we were able to reach more of the public through this venue. Hopefully they’ll stop by Thursday night. If not, we at least peaked their interest!!
Name: Andy Adams
Great meeting tonight st Cafe’ Buono! For those who couldn’t make it…keep an eye on the site. Alot of postings will be added. Your input and ideas are greatly appreciated!
Name: Andy Adams
I was pleasantly surprised at the energy and enthusiasm at tonight’s meeting. Many great ideas were discussed. We’ve begun as a community to come together and brainstorm of what we would like the downtown to become. I’m excited and looking forward to future meetings where I may be a part of making Bristol’s downtown vibrant again. My goal is to bring 3-6 friends to the next meeting. Hope to see you there!
Name: Andy Adams