Norwalk, Connecticut

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Norwalk, Connecticut
City
Norwalk City Hall
Norwalk City Hall
Motto: E Pluribus Unum
Location in Fairfield County, Connecticut
Location in Fairfield County, Connecticut
Coordinates: 41°05′38″N 73°25′11″W / 41.09389°N 73.41972°W / 41.09389; -73.41972Coordinates: 41°05′38″N 73°25′11″W / 41.09389°N 73.41972°W / 41.09389; -73.41972
Country  United States
State  Connecticut
County Fairfield
NECTA Bridgeport-Stamford
Region South Western Region
Purchased February 26, 1640
Incorporated September 11, 1651
Consolidated June 6, 1913
Founded by Roger Ludlow
Government
 • Type Mayor-council
 • Mayor Harry Rilling (D)
 • State Senator Bob Duff (DDistrict 25)
 • State Reps. Chris Perone
(D137th District)
Bruce Morris
(D140th District)
Terrie Wood
(R141st District)
Lawrence F. Cafero
(R142nd District)
Gail Lavielle
(R143rd District)
 • U.S. Rep. Jim Himes
(D4th District)
Area
 • Total 36.3 sq mi (94.0 km2)
 • Land 22.8 sq mi (59.1 km2)
 • Water 13.5 sq mi (35.0 km2)
Elevation 36 ft (11 m)
Population (2013)[1]
 • Total 87,776
 • Density 3,700/sq mi (1,430/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5:00)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4:00)
ZIP code 06850-06860
Area code(s) 203
FIPS code 09-55990
GNIS feature ID 0209405
Demonym Norwalker
Website http://www.norwalkct.org

Norwalk is a city in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. According to the 2010 census, the population of the city is 85,603, making Norwalk sixth in population in Connecticut, and third in Fairfield County.[1] The city is part of the New York metropolitan area.

The name "Norwalk," originally spelled "Norwaukee," is of uncertain origin. It may come from an Algonquian word, noyank, meaning "point of land." It may be corrupted from "Naramauke,"[2] supposedly the name of a Native American chief.

The farming of oysters has long been important to Norwalk, which was once nicknamed "Oyster Town." Each September, Norwalk holds its Oyster Festival.

History[edit]

Norwalk was purchased in 1640 by Roger Ludlow. The original purchase included the land between the Norwalk and Saugatuck rivers, at a distance of a "day’s walk" from the sea. Norwalk was chartered as a town on September 11, 1651.[3]

The traditional American song "Yankee Doodle" has Norwalk-related origins.[citation needed] During the French and Indian War, a regiment of Norwalkers lead by Colonel Thomas Fitch arrived at Fort Crailo, NY. The British regiment began to mock and ridicule the rag-tag Connecticut troops, who had only chicken feathers for a uniform. Richard Shuckburgh, a British army surgeon, added words to a popular tune of the time, Lucy Locket (e.g., “stuck a feather in his cap and called it macaroni”, macaroni being the London slang at the time for a foppish dandy).

In 1776, American spy Nathan Hale set out from Norwalk by ship on his ill-fated intelligence-gathering mission.

British forces under General William Tryon arrived on July 10, 1779 and almost completely destroyed Norwalk; only six houses were spared. After the Revolutionary War, many residents were compensated for their losses with free land grants in the Connecticut Western Reserve in what is now Ohio; this later became Norwalk, Ohio.

In 1849 the New York and New Haven Railroad started operating through Norwalk. In 1852 the Danbury and Norwalk Railroad connected Norwalk with Danbury. Both railroads eventually became parts of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. The first major U.S. railroad bridge disaster occurred in Norwalk in 1853 when a train plunged into the Norwalk River. Forty-six deaths and about 30 injuries resulted.

Oyster farming in Norwalk peaked from the late 19th century to the early part of the 20th century. By 1880, it had the largest fleet of steam-powered oyster boats in the world.

Norwalk was reincorporated as a borough in 1836, then reincorporated as a city in 1893 and was consolidated with the town of Norwalk in 1913. This latter event gave rise to the 1913 year that appears on the seal of the city.

In the mid-1970s, the city government and several local organizations started successful efforts to revitalize the South Norwalk business district ("SoNo"). The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk was founded as part of that effort.

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 36.3 square miles (94 km2), of which, 22.8 square miles (59 km2) of it is land and 13.5 square miles (35 km2) of it (37.24%) is water.

Neighborhoods[edit]

1847 Map of Norwalk

Norwalk is composed of approximately 24 neighborhoods:

Neighboring towns[edit]

Norwalk is bordered on the east by Westport; on the north by Wilton; on the northwest by New Canaan; on the west by Darien and on the south by Long Island Sound.

Climate[edit]

Norwalk, like the rest of coastal Connecticut lies in the broad transition zone between the cold humid continental climate to the north (Köppen climate classification: Dfa) and the more mild temperate/subtropical climate (Köppen Cfa), to the south. Coastal Connecticut, Long Island/NYC, and northern New Jersey are the general dividing line between theses two climate zones.

The warm season in Norwalk is from late May through mid October. Warm and often humid weather, with highs in the 80's F and lows in the 60's F are common. Late day thundershowers are common in the hottest months (June, July, August), despite the mostly sunny skies. The cool/cold season is from late November though mid March, with highs near 40 F and lows in the upper 20's F. Winter weather is far more variable than summer weather along the Connecticut coast, ranging from sunny days with high temperatures in the low 50's F, to cold and blustery conditions with occasional snow. Like much of the Connecticut coast and nearby Long Island, NY, some of the winter precipitation is rain or a mix and rain and wet snow in Norwalk. Norwalk averages about 30 inches of snowfall annually (reported at NWS Bridgeport) - about half as much as inland areas of CT and southern New York (Hartford averages 45 inches and Albany averages 61 inches for example).

Although infrequent, tropical cyclones (hurricanes/tropical storms) have struck Connecticut and the Norwalk area. Hurricane landfalls have occurred along the Connecticut coast in 1903, 1938, 1944, 1954 (Carol), 1960 (Donna), 1985 (Gloria). Tropical Storm Irene (2011) also caused moderate damage along the Connecticut coast, as did Hurricane Sandy (which made landfall in New Jersey) in 2012.

Coastal Connecticut is the broad transition zone where so-called "subtropical indicator" plants and other broadleaf evergreens can successfully be cultivated. As such, Southern Magnolias, Needle Palms, Windmill palm, Loblolly Pines, and Crape Myrtles are grown in private and public gardens. Based on NWS (National Weather Service) 30 year data, Norwalk,CT averages 94 days a year with freeze (temperatures of 32 F/0 C or lower)...about the same as Baltimore, MD or Albuquerque, NM.

Climate data for Norwalk, Connecticut
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 68
(20)
71
(22)
79
(26)
95
(35)
97
(36)
97
(36)
103
(39)
97
(36)
99
(37)
89
(32)
77
(25)
66
(19)
103
(39)
Average high °F (°C) 37
(3)
39
(4)
48
(9)
60
(16)
70
(21)
79
(26)
84
(29)
82
(28)
75
(24)
64
(18)
52
(11)
42
(6)
61
(16.3)
Average low °F (°C) 23
(−5)
25
(−4)
31
(−1)
41
(5)
51
(11)
60
(16)
66
(19)
65
(18)
58
(14)
46
(8)
38
(3)
28
(−2)
44.3
(6.8)
Record low °F (°C) −15
(−26)
−7
(−22)
−2
(−19)
17
(−8)
30
(−1)
34
(1)
45
(7)
41
(5)
31
(−1)
17
(−8)
14
(−10)
−9
(−23)
−15
(−26)
Precipitation inches (mm) 4.20
(106.7)
3.03
(77)
4.33
(110)
4.37
(111)
4.36
(110.7)
3.94
(100.1)
3.83
(97.3)
3.89
(98.8)
4.54
(115.3)
3.89
(98.8)
4.04
(102.6)
3.96
(100.6)
48.38
(1,228.9)
Source: The Weather Channel[4]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 5,308
1890 5,826 9.8%
1900 6,125 5.1%
1910 6,954 13.5%
1920 27,743 299.0%
1930 36,019 29.8%
1940 39,849 10.6%
1950 49,460 24.1%
1960 67,775 37.0%
1970 79,113 16.7%
1980 77,767 −1.7%
1990 78,331 0.7%
2000 82,951 5.9%
2010 85,603 3.2%
Est. 2012 87,190 1.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
2011 estimate

As of the 2010 census, there were 85,603 people residing in the city.

The number of Hispanics, who may be of various races, is up by 10,889 — a 61 percent increase from the 12,966 who were counted in 2000.

Norwalk's overall population is up by 2,652. As of 2010, whites were 69 percent of the total (whites were 73.9 percent of the total in 2000); blacks, 14.2 percent; Asians, 4.8 percent; American Indians, Pacific Islanders and people counted as "some other race" were 9.4 percent of the total. Those who said they were of two or more races were 2.8 percent of the city's population (that totals 100.2 percent because the percentage figures are rounded).[5]

As of the census of 2000, there were 82,951 people, 32,711 households, and 20,967 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,637.3 people per square mile (1,404.1/km²). There were 33,753 housing units at an average density of 1,480.0 per square mile (571.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 73.95% White, 15.27% Black or African American, 0.21% Native American, 3.25% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 4.33% from other races, and 2.95% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 15.63% of the population. There is a great African American concentration in the city's South Norwalk And Norwalk. The foreign nation in which the most residents of Norwalk were born was Colombia, the birthplace of 2.8% of Norwalk's total population and 14% of its foreign-born population.

There were 32,711 households, of which 28.5% had children under the age of 18, 47.9% were married couples living together, 12.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.9% were non-families. 28.2% of all households were individuals and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 or older. The average household size was 2.51 and the average family size was 3.10.

In the city the population was 22.1% under the age of 18, 7.0% from 18 to 24, 35.5% from 25 to 44, 22.6% from 45 to 64, and 12.8% who were 65 or older. The median age was 37. For every 100 females there were 95.3 males. For every 100 females 18 or older, there were 91.4 males.

According to a 2007 estimate, the median income for a household in the city was $70,672, and the median income for a family was $83,695. Males had a median income of $46,988 versus $38,312 for females. The per capita income for the city was $31,781. About 5.0% of families and 7.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.6% of those under 18 and 6.3% of those 65 or older.

Politics[edit]

Norwalk leans slightly Democratic, with 1.3 active registered Democrats per Republican as of October 2005.

Voter registration and party enrollment as of October 25, 2005[6]
Party Active voters Inactive voters Total voters Percentage
  Democratic 13,626 109 13,735 29.71%
  Republican 10,029 84 10,113 21.87%
  Unaffiliated 21,447 188 21,635 46.79%
  Minor parties 745 5 753 1.63%
Total 45,850 386 46,236 100%

Religion[edit]

In Norwalk, there are numerous Christian churches which include;

Government[edit]

Municipal[edit]

The city of Norwalk is a charter city. The City of Norwalk's administration offices are located at 125 East Avenue. Norwalk's common council consists of fifteen council members, five elected at-large and ten elected by district, two from each district. The mayor is elected separately, at large and serves for two years. Common Council meetings are held on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month.

The Common Council is the law-writing body of the City of Norwalk. The city's charter gives certain administrative powers exclusively to the Council and others jointly to the Council and Mayor. The current mayor of Norwalk, is Harry Rilling, a Democrat. Historically, Norwalk's Nuisance Abatement and Quality of Life Act has been considered an important law for citizens and law enforcement officers.[7]

The current at-large council members are Richard J. Bonenfant, Glenn A. Iannaccone, Douglas E. Hempstead, Bruce L. Kimmel, and Sharon Stewart; and the district members are Eloisa M. Melendez, and David A. Watts from District A; Phaedrel L. Bowman and Travis L. Simms Minority Leader, from District B; John Kydes and Michelle A. Maggio from District C; Shannon O'Toole Giandurco and Jerry E. Petrini Majority Leader, from District D; John E. Igneri and David T. McCarthy from District E.

State[edit]

The citizens of Norwalk as electors of one of five House legislative districts are represented in the Connecticut House of Representatives by:

as members of a single Senate legislative district are represented in the Connecticut Senate by:

Federal[edit]

The citizens of Norwalk, as members of Connecticut's 4th congressional district are represented by Jim Himes (D) in the United States House of Representatives.

Economy[edit]

The economy of Norwalk is spread somewhat evenly across at least 12 different NAICS industry groups according to the United States Census Bureau.[8]

2002 Economic census for Norwalk[8]
NAICS code Description establishments sales ($1000) payroll ($1000) employees
31–33 Manufacturing 147 1321517 334344 6897
42 Wholesale trade 178 4112214 197187 3053
44–45 Retail trade 404 2694568 269868 7455
51 Information 95 93210 1820
53 Real estate & rental & leasing 98 83029 18108 443
54 Professional, scientific, & technical services 439 620019 267952 3874
56 Administrative & support & waste management & remediation service 234 1298440 233201 7824
61 Educational services 32 100–249
62 Health care & social assistance 275 514877 235061 5528
71 Arts, entertainment, & recreation 62 70408 21744 908
72 Accommodation & food services 201 134643 34692 2147
81 Other services (except public administration) 235 169490 54913 1584
Totals 2400 11019205 1760280 41633-41782

Large and distinctive companies[edit]

  • Applera Corp. Applied Biosystems Group (ABI)[9] – headquarters, 301 Merritt Seven; the successor to Norwalk's old Perkin Elmer Corp. (the actual name of Perkin Elmer went to another company) Appelera Biosystems develops, manufactures, sells and services instrument systems, reagents and software for the life sciences industry. It is a separately traded stock under the holding company Applera Corp., also based in Norwalk. (Applera Corp. also includes Celera Genomics, best known for its work on the human genome project.) Appelera Biosystems has 4,030 employees companywide; $1.8 billion in 2005 revenues; CEO Tony L. White
  • Cervalis — Colocation, and managed services Provider; Norwalk is home to company headquarters, and Connecticut's largest data center, a Cervalis facility.
  • Diageo North America—U.S. headquarters of the world's largest liquor maker
  • Dooney & Bourke apparel manufacturer
  • Emcor Group Inc. (EME)[10] – headquarters, 301 Merritt Seven (not to be confused with "Premcor Inc." of Greenwich); a Fortune 500 company that performs mechanical and electrical construction, energy infrastructure and facilities services for a range of businesses worldwide; 26,000 employees companywide; 506 in Connecticut; $4.7 billion in 2005 revenues; CEO Frank T. MacInnis
  • FactSet Research Systems – A leading provider of global financial and economic information, including fundamental financial data on tens of thousands of companies worldwide. Combining hundreds of databases into its own dedicated online service, FactSet also provides the tools to download, combine, and manipulate financial data for investment analysis. FactSet has offices in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, its headquarters are in Norwalk.
  • GE Capital - leasing and financial services company
  • IMS Health — The world's largest supplier of pharmaceutical market intelligence recently moved its headquarters to Norwalk from Fairfield, Connecticut.
  • Kayak.com – headquarters, Connecticut Avenue; a travel search engine Web site founded in January 2005; Steve Hafner, CEO.
  • Media Storm LLC (privately held)[11] – headquarters, advertising company.
  • MBI, parent company of The Danbury Mint and Easton Press.
  • Northrop Grumman Norden Systems (formerly Norden Systems)[12] – a division of Northrop Grumman.
  • Pepperidge Farm – a division of the Campbell Soup Company since 1961.
  • priceline.com (PCLN)[13] – headquarters; online service books airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, cruises, vacation packages and mortgages; 532 employees companywide, 280 in Connecticut; $963 million in annual revenues; CEO Jeffrey H. Boyd
  • SoBe – a division; founded in Norwalk in 1996, it was bought by PepsiCo in 2000.
  • Southern Air - a cargo carrier airline based in Norwalk
  • Stew Leonard's – headquarters and flagship store on Westport Avenue
  • Tauck – An upscale escorted tour and cruise operator, with nearly 100 land tours, river cruises and ocean cruises in over 60 countries.
  • Tower Optical - a small, family-owned company making coin-operated viewers at major tourist sites since 1932.
  • Trans-Lux – maker of real time displays. Headquarters are in Norwalk, but manufacturing has moved elsewhere.
  • Virgin Atlantic Airways – U.S. headquarters at 75 North Water Street
  • The influential Financial Accounting Standards Board and related Government Accounting Standards Board are headquartered in Norwalk.
  • Xerox – World headquarters located at 45 Glover Avenue; global document management company, which manufactures and sells a range of color and black-and-white printers, multifunction systems, photo copiers, digital production printing presses, and related consulting services and supplies.

Landmarks, sites, and attractions[edit]

1907 postcard showing Green's Ledge (Green's Reef) Lighthouse
  • Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum[14] This 62-room mansion is considered one of the oldest and finest surviving Second Empire style country houses ever built in the United States. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1971. Recently, it was used for interior shots in the 2004 remake of The Stepford Wives.
  • Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, a major aquarium that specializes in displaying the marine life and ecology of Long Island Sound.
  • The Mill Hill Historic Park and Museum, a collection of historic buildings open to visitors on weekends from May through September and by appointment year round, and is maintained by the Norwalk Historical Society.
  • The Norwalk Islands are used by powerboaters, fishers, kayakers and canoeists as well as birdwatchers and campers for day trips and sometimes overnight camping stays.
  • Norwalk Museum,[15] — 41 North Main St. — in the Colonial Revival -style building that previously served as the South Norwalk City Hall prior to the incorporation of Norwalk and Old Well (South Norwalk) in 1913. Museum is currently closed.
  • Norwalk Symphony Orchestra performs five concerts annually in the Norwalk Concert Hall, 125 East Avenue
  • Norwalk Youth Symphony performs at concerts held in the Norwalk City Hall on East Avenue.
  • Sheffield Island Lighthouse is open to the public seasonally.
  • SoNo Switchtower Museum[16]
  • The Silvermine Tavern[17] in a historic riverside mill complex of buildings in the Silvermine section of the city, closed its popular restaurant in 2009, though the inn remains open as a bed and breakfast and for special functions.
  • Stepping Stones Museum for Children at Mathews Park, near the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum. For children ages 10 and under.

Sports[edit]

Baseball and softball are popular amateur sports with active leagues across many age groups in Norwalk. There are 4 baseball fields and 16 Little League fields in the city.[18] Several of the fields are illuminated for nighttime play.[19] The Norwalk Little League team won the Little League World Series in 1952.[20] The 14 year old Babe Ruth League team won the championship in 2008.[21] In 2010, the cal Ripken 12 year old Norwalk all star team made to the Cal Ripken league World Series and placed 3rd in the country. In 2011, the Norwalk American Senior Legion baseball team won the Connecticut State Championship. This had not been accomplished by any other Norwalk Legion team in the storied 83 year history. The team defeated Branford, CT in the championship game. The girls Norwalk Pride fast pitch softball team won the Connecticut State Championship in 2005, 2006, and 2007.

The Norwalk Biddy Basketball All Star team went to the World Championships in New Orleans, LA in 1986 and placed 7th in the world.

Being a coastal city Norwalk is home to a great many water sports including competitive swimming, recreational boating and fishing, sailing, windsurfing, and kayaking. The Norwalk River and inner Norwalk Harbor host rowing events and organizations.[22] Norwalk resident Daniel Walsh won a bronze medal in Beijing with the U.S. Olympic rowing team in the 2008 Summer Olympics.[23]

There are three golf courses in the city of Norwalk.[24]

The cross town rivalry between the city's two largest high schools' sports teams can be rather fierce, particularly for the football, soccer and field hockey teams in the fall; as well as lacrosse, baseball, and softball teams in the spring. Brien McMahon high school's football team won the FCIAC (Fairfield County InterAthletic Conference) and Class M State Football championship in 1994. McMahon high school's boys lacrosse team went on to win the state division 2 lacrosse championship in 2000.

In professional team sports Norwalk is represented by the Connecticut Wildcats in the American National Rugby League.

Education[edit]

The Superintendent (education) of Norwalk Public Schools is Dr. Manuel Rivera.

The public school system has three high schools, each covering Grades 9 through 12: The oldest, Norwalk High School (founded in 1902) is the home of the Norwalk Bears. Brien McMahon High School (founded in 1960) is named for U.S. Senator Brien McMahon. The third is Briggs High School, which was named for Dr. Richard C. Briggs, who was superintendent of schools from 1971 to 1980. Briggs High School was formerly known as the Briggs Center for Vocational Arts and is an alternative to the two traditional high schools.

The city has four public middle schools, for grades 6–8: West Rocks Middle School and Nathan Hale Middle School, which feed into Norwalk High School, as well as Roton Middle School and Ponus Ridge Middle School, which feed into Brien McMahon High School.

There are twelve elementary schools in the Norwalk public school district: Brookside, Columbus Magnet, Cranbury, Fox Run, Jefferson, Kendall, Marvin, Naramake, Rowayton, Silvermine, Tracey, and Wolfpit. One charter school, Side by Side Community School, is located in South Norwalk.

In 2006, three of the city's four middle schools and nine of its twelve elementary schools, along with a "community school" were cited as falling behind in standards for the federal "No Child Left Behind" Act. Three elementary schools had not met the standards for two years in a row, so students in those schools are offered the choice to go to a Norwalk public school that hasn't been designated as needing improvement.

Aside from public schools, there is also the private All Saints Catholic School, which offers preschool through 8th grade education; the Montessori Middle School for grades 5–8; and the Winston Preparatory School for grades 6–12, and starting in the fall of 2009 the Connecticut Friends School will offer classes for K-8.

Post-secondary education[edit]

Emergency services[edit]

Emergency medical services[edit]

Norwalk is served 24/7 by Norwalk Hospital and Norwalk Hospital EMS, a progressive 911 paramedic service. The service consists of hospital based paramedics and EMT-Is who serve Norwalk as well as New Canaan, Wilton, Weston, and Westport. The service responded to over 9,500 medical emergencies in 2008 in the city of Norwalk and 6,000 in the neighboring communities. Norwalk Hospital EMS is widely known as one of the top services in the state and region. Typically the ambulances respond out of Norwalk Hospital as the paramedics and EMT-I assist in the Emergency Department while not in the field. NHEMS works closely with other Norwalk first responders (Norwalk Fire and Police Departments).

Fire Department[edit]

Norwalk Fire Department (NFD)
Operational Area
Country United States
State  Connecticut
City Norwalk
Agency Overview
Annual calls ~6,000
Employees 120
Fire chief Denis McCarthy
IAFF 830
Facilities & Equipment
Battalions 1
Stations 5
Engines 5
Trucks 2
Rescues 1
Fireboats 2
HAZMAT 1
EMS Level BLS First Responder
USAR 1

The city of Norwalk is protected 24/7, 365 by the 120 paid, professional firefighters of the city of Norwalk Fire Department (NFD). The Norwalk Fire Department operates out of 5 Fire Stations, located throughout the city, under the command of a Deputy Chief per shift. The NFD also maintains and operates a fire apparatus fleet of 5 Engines, 2 Trucks, 1 Rescue, 1 Tactical Rescue, 1 Haz-Mat. Unit, 1 Tanker, 1 Fireboat, and numerous special, support, and reserve units. There are 32 firefighters on duty at all times. The Norwalk Fire Department responds to over 6,000 emergency calls a year.[25][26] The city's most recent fireboat, the Robert L. Bedell -- delivered in October 2012 -- was paid for from a grant from the Department of Homeland Security's Port Security Grant Fund.[27][28][29][30]

Fire Station Locations and Apparatus[edit]

Below is a list of all fire station locations and apparatus in the city of Norwalk.

Engine Company Truck Company Special Unit Command Unit Address Neighborhood
Engine 1 Truck 1 Rescue 1, Marine 238 90 New Canaan Ave. Broad River
Engine 2 Truck 2 Support Units Car 1(Chief of Department), Car 2(Deputy Chief) 121 Connecticut Ave. Central Norwalk
Engine 3 56 Van Zant St. East Norwalk
Engine 4 180 Westport Ave. Cranbury
Engine 5 23 Meadow St. South Norwalk

The Norwalk Fire Department also operates a Fire Apparatus Maintenance Facility in Central Norwalk at 100 Fairfield Ave. It houses a Haz-Mat./Crane Unit, a Tanker, 3 Reserve Engines (6, 7, 9), 2 Reserve Trucks (Truck's 1, 4), 2 Reserve Rescues (2, 3), 1 Tac. Rescue Unit(Tac. Rescue 2), a Reserve Deputy Chief's vehicle (Car 3), and numerous support vehicles. The city's fireboat, Marine 24 is docked at the boat ramps at Veterans Memorial Park in East Norwalk.

Response guidelines[edit]

  • Activated Fire Alarm (AFA) Assignment: 1 Engine, 1 Truck
  • Box (1st Alarm) Assignment (Structure Fire): 3 Engines (3rd is RIT), 2 Trucks, Rescue, Deputy Chief, Safety Officer, Norwalk Hospital EMS
  • 2nd/General Alarm Assignment(Structure Fire-Upgrade): 2 Engines, Safety Officer, Car 1 (Chief of Department)
  • Minor Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) Assignment: 1 Engine, Norwalk Hospital EMS
  • Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) w/Injuries/Entrapment Assignment: 1 Engine, Rescue, Deputy Chief; Norwalk Hospital EMS
  • Emergency Medical Services Assignment: 1 Engine, Norwalk Hospital EMS
  • Water Leak Assignment: 1 Truck

Police department[edit]

Founded in 1913, the Norwalk Police Department (NPD) currently has approximately 180 sworn police officers and 3 police dogs.[31] Police Officers of the Norwalk Police Department have reportedly earned a maximum annual salary of roughly $228,269.79.[32]

Annual events[edit]

  • Norwalk Harbor Splash!,[33] held in early June and started in 1995, the festival features arts and crafts booths, food vendors, music, a parade, and dragon boat races.
  • St. George Greek Orthodox Festival, held in early June, the festival features Greek delicacies, Pontic Greek dance exhibitions and a large carnival.
  • Round Hill Highland Games,[34] a festival of Scottish culture and athletic events, was started in 1923 in Greenwich, CT but interrupted during World War II, then restarted in 1952, and has been held in Norwalk's Cranbury Park on or around July 4 for a number of years. In 2006, the 83rd annual event attracted 4,000 people to hear bagpipes and watch the caber toss, the hammer throw, and other events; with athletes often wearing wool kilts. Games for children are also offered. Food and Scottish items are offered for sale. Organizers say the event is the third-oldest Scottish games festival in the United States.[35]
  • SoNo Arts Celebration,[36] held in mid-summer
  • Kayak for a Cause, a fund-raising event held every summer since 2000 at Calf Pasture Beach.
  • The Norwalk Oyster Festival, held first weekend after Labor Day
  • Norwalk Boat Show,[37] held in late September
  • The Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum has hosted an annual antique show since 1978. In 2006 the show was held the last weekend in October and attracted dealers from Ohio and Pennsylvania as well as Connecticut.[38]

Sites on the National Register of Historic Places[edit]

Rock Ledge estate in Rowayton

Norwalk sites and districts on the National Register of Historic Places include the Norwalk Green Historic District (roughly bounded by Smith and Park Streets, Boston Post Road, East and Morgan Avenues). The district contains examples of Federal Style, Greek Revival, and Late Victorian architecture. (added 1987)[39]

Another local site on the Register is the Former Joseph Loth Company Building (25 Grand St.). The 133,000-square-foot (12,400 m2) building, since renovated as an apartment building and renamed "Clocktower Close" in the mid-1980s, has an 85-foot (26 m)-high Romanesque Revival clocktower[40] (added 1984) These other sites are also on the Register: the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion (added 1970), the former Rock Ledge estate in Rowayton (1977), the Norwalk Museum (1995), and three lighthouses—the Sheffield Island Lighthouse, Peck Ledge Lighthouse, the Onion domed, 1906 Moorish Revival building of Beth Israel of Norwalk/Westport and Greens Ledge Lighthouse. The most recently added site to the historical register is Village Creek, which was the first community in the United States to be racially integrated. The community was added to the register in August 2010.

For additional Norwalk sites on the list, see South Norwalk.

Media[edit]

Several publications regularly cover news in Norwalk, including two daily newspapers, a weekly newspaper, two professional news websites affiliated with large companies and one independent professional news website.

The Hour is an independent daily newspaper based in Norwalk and founded in 1871. The Advocate (Stamford), a unit of Hearst Corp., had a Norwalk edition with a bureau in the city, but both have since closed down, and the Advocate provides occasional coverage, much of which also appears in the Norwalk Citizen-News, a weekly also owned by Hearst. Norwalk Patch is part of a news division owned by AOL. The Norwalk Daily Voice (owned by The Daily Voice, which is headquartered in New York City). NancyOnNorwalk.com (independent website) focuses on local government, schools, social services and other taxpayer-relevant issues. It is owned by Englewood Edge LLC, headquartered in Norwalk.

News 12 Connecticut, a 24-hour regional news channel covering events in southwestern Connecticut is based in Norwalk. News 12 Connecticut is owned and operated by Cablevision, a unit of Rainbow Media Holdings, Inc. and is available to subscribers of that cable television service.

Rowayton is also covered by New Canaan-Darien & Rowayton magazine, a glossy monthly is owned by Moffly Publications.

Norwalkplus is a publication of Canaiden, LLC of Stamford.[41]

Infrastructure[edit]

Transportation[edit]

Public transportation[edit]

Bus[edit]

Public transportation within Norwalk is provided primarily by the Norwalk Transit District's "WHEELS" buses. The WHEELS buses offer extensive service in Norwalk and Westport and the Norwalk Transit District operates services throughout southwestern Connecticut. The state run Connecticut Transit Coastal Link buses operate through Norwalk as part of the Stamford Division.

Rail[edit]

The Metro-North Railroad's main New Haven and Danbury branch lines both run through Norwalk. Metro-North provides passenger and commuter service to four stations within the city, with direct connections to New York City, Stamford, Bridgeport, and New Haven. The South Norwalk owned and operated by the Norwalk Parking Authority (www.norwalkpark.org) station lies along the main line and is also the southern terminus of the Danbury branch line. The Rowayton and East Norwalkoperated by the Norwalk Parking Authority Norwalk Parking Authority(www.norwalkpark.org) stations are along the New Haven main line. The Merritt 7 station lies along the Danbury branch line. The New Haven line bridge over the Norwalk River is the only four track swing bridge in the nation. The main line comprises a segment along Amtrak's Northeast Corridor though the national passenger railroad does not provide service to Norwalk. The nearest stations that Amtrak does stop at are Stamford and Bridgeport. The Connecticut Department of Transportation's Shore Line East passenger service trains also run through Norwalk, though only a few SLE trains stop at South Norwalk station. Shore Line East trains also stop at nearby Stamford and Bridgeport stations.

Freight service over the rail lines in Norwalk is provided by CSX Transportation and the Providence and Worcester Railroad. During the week, over 200 trains a day pass through Norwalk.

Air[edit]

There is no scheduled air service directly into Norwalk, but there are airports nearby such as LaGuardia Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City; Newark Liberty International Airport in Newark, New Jersey; Westchester County Airport in Westchester County; Stewart International Airport in Newburgh, New York; and Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks (near Hartford) Connecticut. Nearby general aviation airports include Danbury Municipal Airport in Danbury, Sikorsky Memorial Airport in Stratford, and the Tweed New Haven Regional Airport in New Haven.

Roads and highways[edit]

Interstate 95 crosses through Norwalk, and there are several exits within the Norwalk city limits. The Merritt Parkway also crosses through Norwalk. Both of these roads are designated to be north/south routes, but through Norwalk, both of them primarily travel east/west. The major north-south artery is Route 7, which begins at Interstate 95. There is an exit to the Merritt Parkway, but only southbound towards New York City, as environmental activists have successfully blocked a full interchange between the two arteries. In northern Norwalk, Route 7 changes from a limited access, divided highway to an ordinary surface road. Originally, the intent was to build the "Super 7" highway (in a different place than the current Route 7), which would link Interstate 95 with Interstate 84 in Danbury, but environmental groups and slow-growth advocates succeeded in preventing this highway from being built (although the state of Connecticut continues to own the land to build the highway). Other state highways in Norwalk are Route 53, Route 123, and Route 136.

The Route 123 bridge over the Norwalk River, which was undergoing being replaced from August 2007 to August 2008, was one of 12 bridges in the southwestern part of the state (including New Haven) with safety inspection ratings so low they are (or were) considered to be in critical condition.[42]

Utilities[edit]

Electricity in most of Norwalk is provided by the Northeast Utilities's Connecticut Light and Power Company division (CL&P). However, within the second and third taxing districts the taxing districts act as the local electric power utility company. Residents of those districts are billed by the district. The districts in turn purchase wholesale power and arrange for its delivery to, and distribution within, the district. Power lines and meters in East Norwalk, South Norwalk, and parts of Rowayton are maintained by line crews employed by the district and they may be seen driving about in trucks with district logos.[43][44] Both the second (SNEW) and third (TTD) district electric departments belong to the six member Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative which pools their wholesale power purchasing to obtain lower rates for customers.[45] The history of municipal power in Norwalk extends back to the 1890s when Albert A. Winchester was an early and forceful advocate of it. In 1892 Winchester designed the city of South Norwalk's generating station – remnants of which still lie along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in South Norwalk in front of the railroad station. The newer power plant on Manressa Island (near the Harbor View neighborhood) does still generate power within the city. The Manressa generation plant was originally a coal-fired plant but was converted to burn oil. It was operated up until the early first decade of the 21st century by CL&P but is now operated under contract by another company. In 2004 the third taxing district installed 3 diesel powered generators at the Norden complex on Norden Place that were initially licensed only for emergency power supply. By summer 2008 the generators, with a combined capacity of 6 Megawatts, had been upgraded to allow licensed operation as regular power providers for the grid (not just emergency power).[46] In 2007 and 2008 the construction of the Middletown-Norwalk transmission line disrupted traffic along the Boston Post Road, but the completion of the line is hoped to help CL&P to provide additional power to lower Fairfield County. In addition a high-voltage undersea line runs from Manressa Island to Long Island to help provide electric power to Long Island Power Authority customers. In 2008 the city government of Norwalk started initial investigations of whether the city might resume generating power for sale to electricity customers in the city.[47]

Natural gas is provided by Northeast Utilities' Yankee Gas subsidiary.[48]

Water in most of the city is provided by the Aquarion Water Company from reservoirs in Wilton.[48] In the first and second taxing districts the taxing districts act as the local water utility provider.[43][49]

Notable people[edit]

Notable residents and others connected to Norwalk include Andy Rooney, commentator on 60 Minutes, who lived in Rowayton until his death, as does author Philip Caputo. A. Scott Berg, an award-winning biographer of celebrities was born in Norwalk. Johnny Gruelle, artist and author, creator of Raggedy Ann, lived in town before he moved to Wilton. Big Band composer Arthur (Artie) Shaw lived in Norwalk in the 1950s. Jazz-piano great Horace Silver was also born in Norwalk. Cartoonist B. Kliban was born and raised in Norwalk. Rapper Chris Webby also hails from Norwalk. Nanobiologist and physician Andrew Borocan was also born in Norwalk; who has made contributions to the medical and nano fields[Bio-MEMS]]

Multi-Grammy award winner Vince Mendoza was born and raised in Norwalk. NBA Hall of Famer Calvin Murphy, and baseball player Mo Vaughn both hail from Norwalk. The late Bob Miller was born in the city. Two Medal of Honor recipients came from Norwalk: John D. Magrath in World War II and Daniel J. Shea in the Vietnam War.

Also Kevin W. Pace, who lived in Norwalk, after his retirement, was a center for the 1956 New York Knickerbockers and currently holds the record for highest triple double involving dunks, blocks, and rebounds. The record includes 12 blocks, 19 dunks, and 25 rebounds in a game against the Boston Celtics.

Movies filmed in Norwalk[edit]

Full-length features and documentary movies, partially filmed or completely taking place in Norwalk, listed in reverse chronological order:[50]

Television[edit]

  • For One More Day (television movie, ABC, December 2007). — filmed in July 2007 on Broad Street.[60]
  • To All My Friends On Shore (1972, made for TV movie).[61]
  • House of Dark Shadows (1970, TV series). — "Abandoned Monastery" portions filmed at the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion.[62]

In popular culture[edit]

Sister cities[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b . United States Census Bureau. August 30, 2013 http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/09/0955990.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ State of Connecticut. Secretary of State. "Connecticut towns in the order of their establishment; with the origins of their names". Connecticut State Register and Manual. Retrieved June 6, 2013.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  3. ^ Richard Somerset-Ward (11 June 2005). An American theatre: the story of Westport Country Playhouse, 1931-2005. Yale University Press. p. 24. ISBN 978-0-300-10648-0. Retrieved 21 November 2011. 
  4. ^ "Average Weather for Norwalk, CT – Temperateure and Precipitation". Retrieved July 29, 2008. 
  5. ^ Gurliacci, David (2011-03-10). "Census 2010: Norwalk Is Larger, More Hispanic and More Asian - Norwalk, CT Patch". Norwalk.patch.com. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  6. ^ "Registration and Party Enrollment Statistics as of October 25, 2005" (PDF). Connecticut Secretary of State. Archived from the original on September 23, 2006. Retrieved October 2, 2006. 
  7. ^ http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1916&dat=19981027&id=2Q1JAAAAIBAJ&sjid=cwUNAAAAIBAJ&pg=1352,3371760
  8. ^ a b "2002 Economic Census: Summary Statistics by 2002 NAICS – Norwalk city, CT". U.S Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-07-18. 
  9. ^ applera.com
  10. ^ "emcorgroup.com". emcorgroup.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  11. ^ mediastorm.biz
  12. ^ "Norden Systems Historical Information". Nordenretireesclub.org. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  13. ^ "priceline.com". priceline.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  14. ^ "lockwoodmathewsmansion.org". lockwoodmathewsmansion.org. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  15. ^ "norwalkmuseum.com". norwalkmuseum.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  16. ^ "Welcome to the SONO Switch Tower Museum!". Westctnrhs.org. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  17. ^ Gizmo Graphics Web Design - Bruce C. brown. "silverminetavern.com". silverminetavern.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  18. ^ "Norwalk Park Facilities" (PDF). Retrieved September 6, 2008. 
  19. ^ The fields at Calf Pasture Beach are illuminated.
  20. ^ "Little League Baseball". Retrieved September 6, 2008. 
  21. ^ "Babe Ruth World Series". Retrieved September 6, 2008. [dead link]
  22. ^ "The Norwalk River Rowing Association". Retrieved September 6, 2008.  and the "New Canaan Crew". Retrieved September 6, 2008.  are two such rowing organizations.
  23. ^ Hine, Tommy (August 22, 2008). "Summer Bronze: Norwalk's Walsh Garners Olympic Medal". Norwalk Citizen~News 12 (34): A1,A15. Retrieved August 27, 2008. [dead link]
  24. ^ The Shorehaven club is a private club in East Norwalk, the Silvermine club is a private club in Silvermine (part of the course lies in the town of Wilton), and the Oak Hills Park golf course is a public course in West Norwalk.
  25. ^ [1][dead link]
  26. ^ "Norwalk Fire Fighters Assoc. Local 830". Local830.org. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  27. ^ Nancy Guenther Chapman (2012-10-24). "New Norwalk Fire Boat Increases Homeland Security". Norwalk Daily Voice. Archived from the original on 2013-12-02. Retrieved 2014-10-24. It was ordered in 2009 and fully paid for by a Port Security Grant through the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency, Norwalk Fire Department Lt. Steve Popadoulos said. It was shipped from Oregon and delivered to Cove Marina two weeks ago. 
  28. ^ "Meet Norwalk’s New Fire Boat !". Norwalk Cove. 2012-10-22. Retrieved 2014-02. The aluminum boat, which was constructed by the Almar division of North River Boats in Roseburg Oregon, was delivered to Norwalk Cove Marina yesterday. North River personnel were familiarizing Norwalk Fire staff on the complex systems today before handing over the boat.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  29. ^ Harold F. Cobin (2012-11-26). "City Christens New Fireboat [Video]: The 38-foot-long Robert L. Bedell was built in Oregon.". Norwalk Patch. Archived from the original on 2014-10-24. Besides the abililty to fight fires, the Bedell is outfitted with sensors that can detect chemicals or radiation. The grant from FEMA requires that it participate in homeland security operations on Long Island Sound. 
  30. ^ "Pumped up: Fire boat deployed for firefighting drill". Westport News. 2014-07-29. Archived from the original on 2014-07-30. Retrieved 2014-10-24. The fire boat, which has a pumping capacity of 2,300 gallons of water per minute, "had no problem" supplying a water deed to the pumper, which can pump 1,500 gallons per minute, fire officials reported in a statement. 
  31. ^ "Norwalk, CT – Official Website - Police Department". Norwalkpd.com. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  32. ^ CITY OF NORWALK TOP 2008 SALARIES - Thehour.com: Norwalk. Thehour.com (2009-01-02). Retrieved on 2013-07-15.
  33. ^ "norwalkharborsplash.com". norwalkharborsplash.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  34. ^ "roundhill.org". roundhill.org. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  35. ^ "Great Scots: Kilts and cabers fly at the 83rd annual Highland Games", no byline, article in The Advocate of Stamford, July 2, 2006, pages A3, A4
  36. ^ South Norwalk Arts Celebration. "sonoarts.org". sonoarts.org. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  37. ^ "boatshownorwalk.com". boatshownorwalk.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  38. ^ "Antiques show will benefit museum" in "Area briefs" feature, The Advocate of Stamford, October 25, 2006, page A18, Stamford edition, "... the 29th annual Lockwood-Mathews Antiques Show ..." Remember, if the 29th was held in 2006, the first would have been held in 1978, counting must be done the way we count centuries such as the "first century" from the years 1–100 AD.
  39. ^ "National Register of Historical Places - CONNECTICUT (CT), Fairfield County". Nationalregisterofhistoricplaces.com. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  40. ^ "Postings - Postings - Norwalk Conversion - Nytimes.Com". New York Times. 1985-02-03. Retrieved 2012-05-01. 
  41. ^ Canaiden home page. Retrieved 2013-01-14.
  42. ^ Kaplan, Thomas, Martineau, Kim, and Kauffman, Matthew, "12 state bridges are judged to be in critical condition" article in The Advocate of Stamford, Connecticut, article reprinted from The Hartford Courant, August 5, 2007, pp1, A6
  43. ^ a b "SNEW HOME PAGE". Retrieved July 29, 2008. 
  44. ^ "TTD – Home". Retrieved July 29, 2008. 
  45. ^ "CMEEC". Retrieved September 29, 2008. 
  46. ^ "TTD Commission Invests in Norden Generators to Help to Control Electricity Prices". Inside Your Third; The Newsletter for Norwalk's Third Taxing District 7 (8): pg. 1. August 2008. 
  47. ^ Koch, Robert (July 28, 2008). "Power panel looking to fulfill a unique request". The Hour. p. A1. 
  48. ^ a b "Utility Companies in Norwalk". Retrieved July 29, 2008. 
  49. ^ "Water Departments in Norwalk CT". Norwalk City Website. Retrieved July 29, 2008. 
  50. ^ "Internet Movie DataBase Web site's page for Norwalk". Retrieved June 1, 2008. 
  51. ^ "Hope Springs (2012) – Filming locations". Retrieved August 2, 2012. 
  52. ^ "Confessions of a Shopaholic (2009) – Filming locations". Retrieved June 1, 2008. 
  53. ^ "Bird of America (2008) – Filmin locations". Retrieved July 28, 2008. 
  54. ^ Road Trip' hits the highway", photographs and long caption in The Advocate of Stamford, Connecticut, Norwalk and Stamford editions, July 17, 2007, page 1
  55. ^ Gizmo Graphics Web Design - Bruce C. brown. "Current Events". Silverminetavern.com. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  56. ^ "The Six Wives of Henry Lefay (2008) – Filming locations". Retrieved July 28, 2008. 
  57. ^ "Star-Struck over Uma," article by Alexandra Fenwick in The Advocate of Stamford, August 16, 2006
  58. ^ "The Stepford Wives (2004) – Filming locations". Retrieved June 1, 2008. 
  59. ^ "The Stepford Wives (1975) – Filming locations". Retrieved June 1, 2008. 
  60. ^ Nickerson, John, "Chase Scene / Police: Man speeds through Oprah movie set", news article in The Advocate of Stamford, Connecticut, Norwalk edition, pp A9-A10
  61. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0067858/locations
  62. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0065856/locations
  63. ^ MJC. "The Catcher in the Rye: Free Study Guide". Cummingsstudyguides.net. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  64. ^ "About Us". Norwalk/Nagarote Sister City Project. Retrieved November 26, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Government[edit]

Community associations and institutions[edit]

Other[edit]