The Naugatuck Valley Council of Governments (NVCOG) hosted the 2022 Spring Meeting of the Metropolitan Area Planning (MAP) Forum on Friday, June 3. Waterbury Mayor Neil O’Leary, Chair of the NVCOG and Central Naugatuck MPO, welcomed the attendees and speakers, emphasizing the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic as a focus of the meeting. Mayor O’Leary recognized the importance of the MAP Forum to maintain coordination of planning activities and interconnectedness between the multi-state regions.
Fred Nangle, deputy director of Service Planning Projects Operations Planning & Analysis at MTA Metro-North Railroad, discussed the significant impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on ridership and rail service as well as how Metro-North service has adjusted to a post-pandemic market. Mark Abraham, Executive Director of DataHaven, presented COVID-19 and Community Wellbeing Survey results, highlighting data collected on experiences with discrimination, quality of the built environment, financial insecurity, and mental health. Looking towards the future, a presentation on the Route 8 & Waterbury Rail Lines Alternative Modes Assessment Study outlined recommended improvements to the Waterbury Rail Line, with goals to ensure a better-integrated transportation system and address connectivity between our regions.
This presentation was followed by MAP Forum work program activity updates from the Multi-State Freight Working Group, Multi-State Resilience Working Group, and the MAP Forum Hub, an online portal for members to upload and exchange information and documents.