Letter: Globe Theater resurrection is great news

By Jackie Lightfield and Maribeth Becker

To the Editor:

Norwalk 2.0 is thrilled that construction has started on the Globe Theater. For every dollar that the State of Connecticut has invested, $26 in economic activity will be generated.

For a performance arts venue, this is an ongoing reinvestment in the local economy. The performers, theater technicians, artists, caterers, electricians, and sound engineers to name a few, are jobs that are filled by local people, will spend their time, energy and dollars in Norwalk Center.

The revitalization of downtown center cannot happen without the creative economy and the investment by the state helps us create the cultural district that will bring more economic activity to Norwalk.

(Read “The arts drive economics benefit” by Jackie Lightfield.)

Jackie Lightfield is former Zoning Commission chairwoman, Arts Commission Chairwoman and co-founder of Norwalk 2.0, an economic development and arts organization. Maribeth Becker is former CNNA coordinator, vice chairwoman of the Arts Commission and co-founder of Norwalk 2.0


2 responses to “Letter: Globe Theater resurrection is great news”

  1. spanner

    Performers, theater technicians, artists, caterers, electricians, and sound engineers all love dollar stores.

  2. Cuz4Coz

    With history and Murphy’s law in mind, safe bet the odds are good, at the local books, that this will never come near expectations, in our lifetimes, no less meeting these continued hollow announcements and shovel photo ops of progress target dates. With locals arguing about everything from sidewalks to one ways, parking and the locations of trees and bike paths and trash receptacles, even traffic stripping and developers always changing plans to meet some criteria or the other by one entity or the other, (yes we agreed to X amount of low income units but you didn’t say where we had to put them), somehow through all the debates of the details, oftentimes the movies theme or message is lost between the credits and commercials. So a new movie/theater/concert hall/etc/etc/ is going up in that crumbling building, saving the facade and structure, (thats some job, btw, remediation than demo than rehab). Any incentives for the contractors to hire local? Than, coming from a dream from a generation ago will sprout right next door, low, and moderate income moderate income apartments, aka HUD Sec 8 approved/accepted, per approval of state, local and federal entity’s, credits, grants, loans and private financing. Oh this is going to work out well, isn’t it? Living next door to concerts? All together the plan sounds kinda like that building being constructed in China, live and work and play and educate all in the same building Sound planning for Norwalk? Look at the monstrosity know as Avalon and while your at it take a look at everything BLT does. Someday, there may very well be indictments and many will be standing with egg all over their faces and worthless buildings that were constructed so cheaply that maintenance costs will exceed return. We often hear talk and comparison to New Cannan, Westport, Darien, even Greenwich. Silent and sometimes vocal racist innuendos. Norwalk is not Greenwich, its not New Cannan or Westport. It’s Norwalk rich in diversity and suffocated by poverty. Neither attribute that is shared with any of our surrounding communities. Ask nearly any kid in Norwalk; What would they like to do? Inevitably a top response is along the lines of: “Are you crazy man? Everyone wants to get the heck out of Norwak.” “There is nothing here but hardship and sorrow.” One of Norwalk’s biggest problems besides focus and unity, is identity. We see our neighbors and we seek to emulate them instead of making our own identity. We often compare ourselves to other towns and even bigger cities with larger populations as well as budgets. Why do we do that? If we do why do we pick and choose what we compare? If we are comparing and postulating all these forecasts and projections on this project, why doesn’t anyone look at what has happened to other similar projects? Fairfield? Darien Stamford? Where is Greenwich’s grand concert hall with all the celebrity residents? When is the last time we have been to the Wilton Playhouse, aka, by local teens as, “The Garage”? Don’t we all hate those long lines at the Bruce Museum and the Ridgefield Playhouse. “Build it and they shall come.” Do we ever ask ourselves what the heck we are building and who the heck is coming and why? Did somebody call Keith Richards in Wilton, (currently on world tour with the rest of the Stones) and get a mou to book at this new gig? Put up all the window dressing that you care to but real world is it comes down to content. Hear Leno is on the road anybody call his agent? Cosby is touring again.. Has to be a draw, promise’s and visions of grandeur do not pay the bills. Certainly worthy of a hat tip for the efforts and expenditures for the guy doing this and all that are trying to help. It’s a very risky bet, lets hope it comes close to some expectations and not just another disappointment and lost dream. Now, when is Dmecca closing again? You want a real draw with coin to drop? Close the bars and encourage dinning establishments using the local venues,(beach, the Maritime, Steeping Stone the other film and future entertainment venues as well as this new theatre and a few art exhibitions, along with go cart and skate board, even boating/sailing/rowing competitions). Connecting SONO with Wall street via pedestrian/bike boardwalk along the river couldnt hurt either. Now if we could level Caldors and reopen the drive in… A dream of the Carvel owner, a nightmare for our police chief, no doubt. 26 for 1? Hope so, that sounds more like the odds the books are giving for, can we say, stumbling/fumbling, again? But we can dream cant we? Care to buy a lotto ticket? Or would you rather drive an old fashioned car at ol’ McDonalds Farm?

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