Once Around the City: TTD’s new substation on time, on budget

The Fitch Street Substation.


Updated 12:26 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 24, with Jim Smith comments.

NORWALK Conn. – TTD, Norwalk’s Third Taxing District Electric Company, has completed construction and begun operation of the Fitch Street Substation, according to a press release. What’s more, the facility came in on schedule and within the $7 million budget.

The Fitch Street Substation was completed in less than 33 months, according to the release.

TTD General Manager Jim Smith said Tuesday the entire project  was paid for by cash reserves the district set aside over the past five to seven years.

Smith said residents should not notice any changes, “other than the fact that our service should even be more reliable due to the fact that we are now taking power directly off the transmission system, as opposed to two underground CL&P feeders.”

He also said the new substation will save the district money by eliminating transmission charges from CL&P “by about $500,000 a year and receiving an additional $250,000 per year from the New England ISO ( grid operator ) as a transmission owner.”

Based on those figures, he said, the facility should pay for itself within “five to seven years.”

Smith credited the TTD staff and the partnership with Eaton Corporation for keeping the project on-schedule.

“Under the guidance of Joe Cristino and myself, our dedicated staff has worked long hours to successfully complete this project on-schedule and within budget,” he said in the release. “I am proud of the team involved in every aspect of this process, and we’re proud that Fitch Street is now energized for our community and customers.”

TTD completed testing over the past 10 days, and final testing of the substation was completed without connection to TTD’s system, minimizing any possible impact to TTD customers, the release said.

Mayor’s Ball to benefit preschool

The 2014 Mayor’s Community Ball will be for grown-ups, but the end result will benefit the kids at Room to Grow Preschool.

Mayor Harry Rilling has chosen the Catholic Charities school readiness program as the recipient of the proceeds from this year’s ball, scheduled for 7 p.m. to midnight Friday, Jan. 24, at The Continental Manor, 112 Main St.

Room to Grow is located at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish Center at 208 East Ave., and has an enrollment of just over 80 children.

Last year’s proceeds went to the Fairfield County Community Foundation’s Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund.

The Silver Streaks will provide music for the event. Master of ceremonies will be David Smith. Diners will have a choice of prime rib, poached salmon, chicken saltimbocca and pasta primavera.

Tickets are $90 per person, $900 for a table of 10.

To reserve, stop by the mayor’s office at Norwalk City Hall, 125 East Ave.

Dinner-fundraiser to fete ex-Mayor Moccia

The Norwalk Republican Town Committee is hosting a $75-a-plate fundraising dinner in honor of former Mayor Richard Moccia at the Norwalk Inn and Conference Center, 99 East Ave.

The event is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10, with cocktails followed by a prime rib dinner, with a cash bar and live entertainment by Steve Kazlauskas.

The event is open to the public, but RSVP’s are required as space is limited, and tickets at the door will cost $100. Pre-payment can be accomplished by making a contribution on the NRTC website, or checks can be sent payable to NRTC c/o Brian Smith, 26 Prospect St. E-3, Norwalk 06850-3228.

Touching bases with the mayor

We checked in with Mayor Harry Rilling to see what’s hot as we head into the Christmas week.

“The most important issue facing us right now is the revaluation,” he said, “keeping taxes as low as possible, and moving POKO and Head of the Harbor South forward as quickly as possible in order to grow our grand list.”

The grand list is taking a bit of a hit from the recent reval. While commercial property gained about 1 percent in value according to the preliminary report, residential properties are down 12.3 percent. The figures will likely be adjusted some after the appeals process.

Overall, the grand list is expected to be down about 8 percent, with a slight shift of the tax burden from homeowners to commercial buildings.


One response to “Once Around the City: TTD’s new substation on time, on budget”

  1. Diane C2

    I’m glad that we ratepayers in Third Taxing District will be saving over $500k starting next year by getting off the CL&P grid, because we overpaid $500,000 for the property itself! The property was valued at approximately $500k and the district paid a whopping $1 million. Twice the value. In 2010. In a recession. Just sayin…..
    But kudo’s to the team that brought the project in on time and on budget. Perhaps City Hall could learn a thing or two from TTD’s project management model.

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