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The Southeastern Connecticut region comprises, as the name suggests, the southeastern corner of the state of Connecticut. It is sometimes referred to as Greater New London or by the tourist slogan Mystic and More.
Southeastern Connecticut has historically been an area heavily dependent on traditional New England economic activities such as fishing, whaling, oystering, and the defense industry. In the present day, the area remains the primary home of the state's fishing and shellfish activity, but has since diversified its economic base to include tourism, gambling, and other services.
The area is home to the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, a United States Navy base in Groton (also home to Electric Boat where the first U.S. nuclear submarine, USS Nautilus, was launched, on January 21, 1954), a Pfizer research facility, and the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods casinos.
There is currently a petition to make Fishers Island, New York part of Southeastern Connecticut.
There are several official definitions for the region. In all definitions, the following 16 towns are always included:
- East Lyme
- Groton (town and separate central city)
- New London (central city)
- North Stonington
- Norwich (central city)
This section needs to be updated. In particular: 2013 consolidation of Councils of governments in Connecticut. (January 2018)
This is an official region administered by the Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments. It consists of 18 towns and oversees land use and transportation infrastructure planning for its member towns. In addition to the towns listed above, the towns of Colchester and Voluntown are also included.
Southeast Service Delivery Area
New England City and Town Area
The Norwich-New London-Westerly NECTA is the metropolitan area surrounding the Norwich/New London urbanized area using towns as building blocks. This definition contains 22 towns and adds the towns of Canterbury, Lyme, Old Lyme, Voluntown, as well as the towns of Westerly and Hopkinton in Rhode Island (the latter of which now became part of the Providence–Fall River–Warwick, RI-MA NECTA).
Metropolitan Statistical Area
The Norwich-New London MSA is a metropolitan area definition using counties as building blocks. It consists of the 21 towns of New London County and adds the towns of Colchester, Lebanon, Lyme, Old Lyme, and Voluntown.
New London Labor Market Area
Southeastern Connecticut's largest ethnic group is composed of Irish-Americans, followed by Italian-Americans, Polish-Americans, and a dying WASP identity in certain shoreline towns. There is also a large Latino population mainly from Puerto Rico, followed by the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, and Ecuador. There is a strong African-American presence, and many small Asian communities in different parts of the region. The Pequot and Mohegan tribes both have their own reservations and casinos, along with a strong identity to their culture, though most trial members only have partial Native American ancestry. Southeastern Connecticut is an ethnically diverse region.