Connecticut public radio station WNPR‘s weekday morning show, “Where We Live,” featured an excellent two-parter about the city of Bridgeport last month. It’s called “A Tale of Two Connecticuts: Part 1” and “Part 2.” From WNPR’s site:
It’s been said often. There are two Connecticuts…one made up of the very rich, and one for the very poor. Stuck in the middle is the city of Bridgeport.
Connecticut’s largest city sits near the eastern end of Fairfield County, one of the richest regions in the nationupscale suburbs that view New York City as the center of life, work, culture and money. But that stops quickly at the border of Bridgeport. It’s a poor, mostly minority city, that has struggled to re-invent itself after losing much of it’s manufacturing economy.
Issues of crime and corruption have plagued the citybut civic leaders and citizens alike are hoping for a comeback.
Bridgeport’s director of economic development, Nancy Hadley, cared enough about the Urban Land Institute panel’s visit to Springfield last month that she showed up at the panel’s final presentation on September 29, and spoke up to ask questions. (She’s the person who brought up the issue of whether a mayor should serve a two-year term or a four-year term. The panel recommended four.) Hadley knows, for one, that Springfield and Bridgeport have a lot in common.