Trees on Whitney

Craig Cesare, Public Works
Tom Parlapiano, Tree Commission
Craig and Tom,
The Whitneyville Civic Association executive board is writing to request Hamden Public Works remove the 3 dead/dying cherry trees , including stumps and  roots on Whitney Ave , directly in front of the Playwright and Framed. They are becoming a hazard and an eyesore. The remaining cherry trees at that location are in very poor health .
The WCA requests the Tree Commission involve the WCA and the adjacent business owners in the new vegetation/tree plan and installation.
We are very interested in working together to improve Whitneyville center.
Best regards,
Liz Helwig
WCA Business Liaison
Janet Kazienko
Whitneyville Civic Association, President

Tree Removal in Di Nicola Park

Curt Leng, Mayor

Dear Mayor Leng:

Once again, it seems that citizen sentiment and advocacy has been trounced by the Town’s Public Works Department, tree division. The department’s recent tree trimming and clean-up in De Nicola Park has resulted in the loss of at least four mature shade trees, immediately adjacent to the playground they so well served on hot summer days.

According to Kath Schomaker the outcome of her initial inquiries was that: (M)ajor tree limbs came down in a recent storm and those limbs were cleared. Some additional trimming under the direction of the tree warden. No mention of arborist involvement.

The WCA is saddened by the careless removal of these mature trees. Even more, we are disheartened by the lack of honest ‘government to community’ dialogue in the process. At its worst, the lack of dialogue serves to usurp the place of the tax-paying community in making unilateral decisions that serves other than our own interests.

We have faith that you understand the critical relationship between Town and Community. Unfortunately, the recent tree cutting drives a wedge (no pun intended) between them that may well extend beyond trees.

We urge you to suspend the cutting of town trees, except in public safety emergencies, until a clear and approved process is implemented and staff can assume their responsibilities in the interest of the community.

Many thanks,
Whitneyville Civic Association

Jan Kazienko, President
Scott Matheson, Secretary

Plan for Whitneyville Branch Library

Dear Mayor Leng,

 

On behalf of the Whitneyville Civic Association, we are writing to request information on your plans for addressing the physical repairs at the Whitneyville Branch of Hamden Public Library.  As you know, the library building has not been well maintained over many years and now requires a number of repairs.  These include new carpeting, ceiling tiles, repairs in the bathroom, stairs and basement, new paint / siding and removal of the exterior oil tank (among others).

 

  • What are your priorities for repairs and/or capital improvements to the Whitneyville Branch?

 

  • What are the timelines for completing different repairs?

 

The Whitneyville Library is an essential community center in our neighborhood.  The library is filled with patrons using the computers, checking out books and videos, reading to their children, receiving tutoring or help with schoolwork, and meeting their neighbors.  It is a hub for family programs and activities.  Even with limited weekday hours, the library is an important gathering place for people of all ages.

 

The Whitneyville Civic Association is discussing ways to publicize the Library’s Saturday hours, so people who work during the week can also enjoy the library.  The Saturday schedule has been inconsistent and not widely publicized, so many of our neighbors are not aware of the Saturday schedule.  The Civic Association discussed different ways to promote and support the library, including through our email distribution list and Facebook page, and at local events including the Fall Festival and summer Music Slams.

 

Thank you for your consideration, and we look forward to working with you to address needed building repairs and to expand the use of the Whitneyville Library beyond the weekdays.

 

Sincerely,

 

Janet Kazienko

Whitneyville Civic Association President

March Meeting minutes

March 10, 2016 meeting

Announcements:

  • Gardening club will have a work day 4/3 and is looking to perhaps broaden their activities beyond the pocket park.
  • Elections in May will be for Secretary and Vice President. There are two people interested in Secretary and one willing to serve as Vice President.
  • Membership envelopes will be available at meetings starting in May to make it simpler to pay dues.
  • Summer Music Slams scheduled for June 15, July 13, and August 17. We will plan to incorporate dessert truck or two and use the Whitneyville Cultural Commons as a rain-location.
  • The spring Litter Pick-up days will be May 14 and 15, watch for details. Meet in / drop off bags in the Ralston/Whitney lot.
  • Tree trimming will be preceded by signs posted on the trees, there is a 10 day period to object.

Library update from Marian Amodio:

  • Changes in the system to bring the library into the 21st century – building on “strong bones.”
  • Updated to policies, rules, fines to make using the library easier.
  • Updates to Miller – cleaning and working on building maintenance.
  • New catalog system at lower cost because we share with many other systems – bonus: can easily see what’s at other libraries.
  • New career/job center and adult programs – movies, speakers, etc.
  • New collaborations and expansions with grants.
  • Whitneyville branch will continue added hours and work on the condition of the building (but this is likely a capital request).

Laine explained the zoning variance applications and encourage use to support. This would allow combing all of the parcels into one and could allow parking to be established.

Paperwork for Whitneyville Cultural Commons 501(c)(3) application is completed and will be submitted soon.

January 2016 meeting minutes

Whitneyville Civic Association meeting

January 14, 7:00-9:00 pm
Putnam Room of 1253 Whitney / Whitneyville Cultural Commons
1253 Whitney Ave

Minutes:

Traffic calming on Mather St. has started.
Mayor Leng updated on the Putnam Bell – truck needed to replace it is broken, but he asked works to borrow/rent a truck; must be above 40F for epoxy to cure.

Annual Election (May 2016): need a vice-president and secretary. Please let the board know if you have questions of are interested in running.

Help with the 2016 Music Slam – Jan would like help with publicity for the three evenings over the summer.

Help with litter pick up in May – need help distributing bags/gloves and actually doing pickup around the neighborhood.

Reminder to pay dues, see Treasurer Deb Weckerle.

Laine Harris & Deirdre Dolan – update on 1253 / Whitneyville Cultural Commons
Nonprofit organization, Whitneyville Cultural Commons, will operate the property and eventually purchase the profit. Civic Association will remain separate with a separate mission, but coordination is encouraged and WCA is welcomed to continue to meet in the space. All are encouraged to join or participate in the WCC.

Chief Wydra, Hamden Police Department
Traffic Calming:
Mather and Servoss / Mather and Waite: line painting at Waite, crosswalk at Servoss (in-street signs are removed for winter – will consider having resident remove sign when it snows instead). Development at 380 is contingent on 4 speed enforcement units (signs that display speed) that would be installed 2 near development, 2 other places on Mather. Longer-term suggestion to reduce clearance on Mather/trail bridge, more like the box culvert at Skiff St. to increase sight lines, reduce hill height.

Community policing initiative:
Outreach to young people: Police Explorer, School Resource Officers (Middle and High School), Police & Youth, and YMCA after school programs. Also, bike patrols have grown, resumed a walking beat and hope to further expand. Citizens Police Academy is a 12 week program that familiarizes participants with law enforcement.

To help police be most effective, they need to know what is happening, so be sure to report all crime – even if it seems minor to you (and you can remain anonymous).

Remember to email jtesta@hamdenpd.com to sign up for Whitneyville alerts.

Roundtable to raise new issues:
Question about Putnam Plaza status – unknown, but suggestion to incorporate trail better into any redevelopment plans.

Kath Schomaker:
MLK, Jr. Event this Sunday @ Friendship Baptist Church, 4:00 p.m., on Edwards Street.