Hartford selects developer for new Rock Cats stadium - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Hartford selects developer for new Rock Cats stadium

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(WFSB file photo) (WFSB file photo)

The potential transformation of Hartford's "Downtown North" took a step forward this week as city officials selected a developer for a Rock Cats stadium.

The project is being pitched as a brand new neighborhood with the centerpiece being the stadium. Joining it will be a grocery store, apartments, shops and a Thomas Hooker Brewery.

"One of the key development initiatives is Downtown North," said Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra. "We need to bridge the north part of the city with downtown."

New sketches of the development offered viewers a glimpse of the future. Behind the ballpark and the brewery would be the apartments.

"It has always been about more than just a stadium," Segarra said. "It has been about the development of Downtown North."

Local businesses said at the moment, they are not seeing growth.

Hartford Denim, a Connecticut-made jean shop, was empty Wednesday afternoon. Arien Wilkerson said he was confident that if a vibrant neighborhood were there, business would be better.

"With everything being rebuilt down here, it can let people expand their horizons," Wilkerson said.

Terrence Stewart is from Hartford, but moved to Bloomfield. He said he was excited about what could be in store for his old city. However, he's still not sure if It'll be enough to lure him back.

"As they keep moving forward, it could be a better chance for me to spend time down here," Stewart said.

Segarra said he will hold a special council meeting on Thursday to make the pitch.

The plans won't be able to fit on the two original lots. Segarra said he is looking for the council to approve the transfer of 19 properties to Downtown North so they have the space to work.

The meeting is Thursday at 6 p.m. inside city hall.

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